MEET OUR TEAM
Founder and President
Ms. Appleman has been working in the summer camp and after school enrichment industry for over thirty years. By the time she launched Performing Arts Workshops in 1998, Cheryl had already compiled a long and varied list of accomplishments: she was a ballet teacher, ran children’s theater programs at UCLA, owned and operated the after school enrichment company Kids In Motion, assisted the Los Angeles Unified School District in developing the first district-approved licensing procedures for enrichment companies working on LAUSD campuses, volunteered at the surgical recovery ward of Los Angeles Children’s Hospital. She founded the Academy of Children’s Services – the first state-registered vocational school for enrichment teachers, which later evolved into the National Enrichment Teachers Association, which developed best practices training and certification standards for instructors throughout the country working in this field.
Performing Arts Workshops began with after school drama, dance, vocal training and karate classes comprising the bulk of its services. As a result of Cheryl’s vision and passion for expanding opportunities for children to experience the Arts, PAW has continued to grow and evolve to include full day Summer Camps, offering programs as varied as Musical Theater, Guitar, Dance, Photography, Filmmaking, Comedy, Magic, Poetry Slam, Stage FX Makeup, Vocal Recording, Debate, Language Arts and more. Due to her constant innovation, PAW was named BEST Summer Camp, BEST Children’s Live Theater and BEST After School Program in the prestigious LA Parent Magazine.
PAW has served tens of thousands of children in communities all throughout the greater Los Angeles area, but for Cheryl, making a difference begins one child at a time.
“I always knew I wanted to work with kids. I knew from a very young age. When I was a teen and was apprenticing with my ballet teacher, Anita Newman, I could see when a kid’s eyes would light up because they ‘got it’, they had an ‘aha!’ moment, the light bulb turned on. And the lesson learned didn’t always have to do with just ballet. It was something bigger, more profound, a lesson they could carry with them for the rest of their lives, whatever their path may be. It made me feel good knowing that I had something to do with that. I never forgot it.”
Cheryl, age 10
With her ballet teacher and mentor, Anita Newman.
Mr. Fitzgerald has been a teacher and educator for over 20 years. He has taught ESL classes in Korea, been an acting coach and martial arts instructor at dozens of public and private schools throughout Los Angeles, a guest artist in the Manhattan Beach Cultural Arts Department, and is currently a professor at Loyola Marymount University.
A lifelong student of theater, Timothey holds a Master of Fine Arts in Acting from UCLA, as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theater from LMU. He joined Performing Arts Workshops in 1998 as an instructor, and has since expanded his duties to include being artistic director, adapting plays and musicals, creating new works, and developing curriculum for PAW’s summer camp and after school enrichment programs.
“Teaching, teaching children especially, is an enormous responsibility. What you say and do, or the manner in which you go about it can profoundly affect how a child feels about learning and education in general. I was very fortunate in that I had some wonderful teachers and mentors. They set the stage for me. When I’m teaching or developing curriculum, I’m standing on their shoulders. I’m thinking of the lessons they imparted to me, and how I might improve upon the design.”
Tim in college
Performing in a production of “Romeo and Juliet”.
Ms. Aaylin ~ Dance Teacher
Hey PAW Campers! My name is Ms. Aaylin and this is my sixth season with Performing Arts Workshops. I’ve trained in ballet, modern, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, and African. I studied dance at El Camino College and graduated from Cal State Dominguez Hills (Go Toros!) with a bachelor’s degree in English Literature. I was part of a dance company for several years and I got the opportunity to travel with them to the Bahamas. In addition to teaching at PAW, I am currently a dance teacher for LAUSD and teach at LA Academy Middle School. My school students learn different genres of dance, put on showcases, and attend dance competitions. I am very excited for another great season at Performing Arts Workshops, and I can’t wait to dance with you all!
Mr. Alan ~ Guitar Teacher
Hi! My name is Mr. Alan! I first picked up a guitar at the age of 12 and I’ve never looked back. I am classically trained on the guitar and am currently attending California State University Dominguez Hills and working on obtaining my bachelor’s degree in music education. While this is my second year with PAW, I have been teaching kids and adults guitar and music for 5 years. The guitar has opened whole new worlds to me, and I think it can for you, too! I’m very passionate about teaching and think that anyone can learn if they want to. I hope everyone has fun learning not just guitar but everything PAW has to offer!
Ms. Angela ~ Director & Acting Teacher
With her high energy and awesome activities, Ms. Angela has been a long time favorite of PAW’s campers. Ms. Angela has been the Director and Acting Teacher at PAW’s West LA location for the past 7 years and has loved every minute of it! During the school year Ms. Angela is a resident stage manager for the 24th St. Theatre in Los Angeles and is also a guest lecturer/professional mentor for UCLA’s Theatre Department. When she is not working in live theatre, Ms. Angela loves to go out for brunch and sing karaoke, but for now she enjoys spending her days with her daughter and going for walks at the park.
Ms. Cynthia ~ Dance & Drill Team Teacher
Originally from Sacramento, California, Ms. Cynthia began dancing at the age of 3. Her classical ballet training helped her land a lead role as “Clara” in the Sacramento Ballet’s Nutcracker at the age of 10. She began choreographing for the stage at the age of 13 and since then has worked with hundreds of children in numerous theatre productions. She worked at Disneyland as a dancer in the “Parade of Dreams”, “A Christmas Fantasy” parade, “Fantasmic!,” and at Universal Studios Hollywood in the “Character Bash” show and tap dancing as part of the “TapWorx” cast. She has choreographed twice for the Rose Parade for the San Antonio Winery’s float with KC and the Sunshine Band and Kool and the Gang. This is Ms. Cynthia’s 8th season with PAW as a dance.
Mr. Daniel ~ Guitar Teacher
Mr. Daniel is a long-time favorite here at PAW and is a classically trained guitarist. He received a BA in classical guitar and composition from Loyola Marymount University. Prior to this, Daniel has played in several jazz and rock groups and holds a soloist award at the Reno Jazz Festival. Today he is a composer, performer as well as a teacher. Daniel started teaching with PAW in 2013 and has been teaching summer camp ever since. His passion for music has helped him inspire students of all ages to pick up the instrument he loves and learn to play their favorite music!
Ms. Haley ~ Singing/Vocal Teacher
This will be Ms. Haley’s fifth year at PAW and she is so excited to see both new and familiar faces this summer and is so excited for all of the summer fun that is to come! Ms. Haley is currently a theater and screenwriting major at Loyola Marymount University and has been doing theater since she was 7 years old! Growing up, she did lots of camps similar to PAW that sparked her love and passion for theater. She hopes PAW will help you find that same love for the arts that she did!
Mr. Jace ~ LOL Comedy Teacher
Mr. Jace a fan favorite of PAW campers, earned his BFA in film and television at Studio School LA. While attending school, he continues to purse acting and comedy professionally. He has performed stand up, improv, and immersive theatre all over LA and has even started doing comedy shows back in his hometown in Texas whenever he visits. PAW students adore Mr. Jace for high energy, enthusiasm, and his dynamic approach to teaching. He is extremely excited to share what he knows with the next generation of young comics!
Mr. Jake ~ Theatrical Makeup Teacher
Jake is a graduate of the Master Makeup program at the renown Makeup Designory School (MUD) in Hollywood. He has worked on feature films such as ‘Ghostbusters: After Life’ (2021), and ‘Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’ (2019). He has received makeup awards for ‘Best 5×5 Film,’ from Life Fest 2017 and ‘Best Thriller’ from Telos Awards 2015. As well nominations for ‘Best Makeup’ in Utah Film Awards. This will be Jake’s third season with Performing Arts Workshops. In class, he will be teaching the fundamentals of Movie Makeup, Theatrical and Aging, Character Makeup, Pop Art, Commercial, High Fashion, Glamour, Fantasy, and Dia de los Muertos Makeup!
Ms. Kelly ~ Singing, Acting & Dance Teacher
Ms. Kelly is so excited to be teaching a third year for Performing Arts Workshops! Originally from San Antonio, Texas, Ms. Kelly traveled to New York City for college, where she attended American Musical and Dramatic Academy and then continued on to The New School where she received her BFA in Musical Theatre. Kelly is the triple threat…a talented singer, dancer and actor! She has been performing in musicals for 30 years, and her favorite part is Adelaide in Guys and Dolls. She now enjoys improv classes at Second City. Ms. Kelly’s favorite TV show is I Love Lucy, her favorite band is The Beatles, and she always ALWAYS has unsweetened iced tea with her.
Ms. Kelsey ~ Director & Singing/Vocal Teacher
This is Ms. Kelsey’s fifth year teaching with Performing Arts Workshops and she is thrilled to be back with us on Zoom! She received her BFA in Contemporary Musical Theatre and Film from Hussian College Los Angeles, and is currently working towards a Certificate in Business and Management of Entertainment from UCLA Extension. Ms. Kelsey has served at Director at our RPV camp location, has taught PAW’s Rock the Mic Specialty Camp for 2 years and has mentored students for 3 years. As a big musical theatre nerd, Kelsey’s goal is to teach her students how to bring out their inner sparkle and share their stories.
Mr. Kelvin ~ Guitar Teacher
Mr. Kelvin is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University where he studied classical guitar performance. He has also studied jazz arranging and classical composition at Los Angeles Valley College. Mr. Kelvin has been working with PAW for 10 glorious years and loves working with all the children he has met along the way. Having studied his entire life, he is very passionate about educating children in music and the arts. He has given this gift back to hundreds of children and is looking forward to expand that number to thousands. Mr. Kelvin is one of PAW’s true rock star teachers and has been a long time favorite of our students. He has created a beautiful blend of arts and technology teaching children guitar on Zoom in group and private lessons for the past several years.
Ms. Kristy ~ Director & Acting Teacher
Ms. Kristy has been working with PAW for the past 10 years and is one of our most beloved camp directors. Ms. Kristy loves living in Los Angeles and teaching acting to kids! She holds a BFA from Chapman University and is a middle school teacher at Bridges Academy. Her favorite role to play is Miss Hannigan in Annie! She can’t wait to act and play improv games with all of you theatre lovers! “My old students, my new students, my giggly students, my funny students…I’m looking forward to having an amazing summer with you all. Let’s act our way through the amazing world of theatre!”
Ms. Natasha ~ Director & Singing/Acting Teacher
Ms. Natasha has been working with PAW for over 15 years and is one of our most beloved camp directors and vocal teachers. She earned her Bachelor of Music degree from the prestigious Berklee College of Music. Since then, she has performed all over the U.S. & overseas, performed on R&B tracks for River City Music’s released in Japan, spent several years fronting showbands for Carnival Cruise Lines, performed with Regional Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Champions, Top Shelf Vocal, and released her own first full-length album, Full Circle. Ms. Natasha currently resides in Torrance, CA, and has been teaching and directing in South Bay for over 16 years! Her teaching focuses on technique, appropriate stylistic singing per genre, and emoting/stage presence.
Mr. Omar ~ Magic Teacher
Since 2013, Mr. Omar has been teaching and performing for PAW campers. Straight from the world famous Magic Castle, Mr. Omar has been amazing children and adults through his creative and original performance & teaching style. Throughout the years he has performed for companies like Ubi SOft, has consulted and hand doubled for movies, performed for live audiences in Las Vegas as well as created original pieces of magic for other professional magicians, and has even produced his very own playing card deck based around his art. He believes in passing on the secrets of magic to the next generation and loves sharing his knowledge and passion for magic with the PAW campers he teaches!
Mr. Paris ~ Karate Teacher
A native Los Angeleno, long time PAW favorite, and lifelong practitioner of the martial arts, Sensei Paris has been teaching and competing for over 30 years. He has expertise in a variety of disciplines, including holding black belts in Kyokushin Karate, Tae Kwon Do, and Brazilian Jujitsu. He has taught all age groups, from tots to seniors, as well as all experience levels from novices to professionals. “I love karate for what it gives to kids. Fun, direction, confidence, discipline, humility, and compassion.” Mr. Paris looks forward to seeing his future black belts in-person and over Zoom!
Ms. Shaindi ~ Debate Teacher
This is Ms. Shaindi’s sixth summer leading PAW’s Debate Camp for Kids! Ms. Shaindi was captain of Santa Monica College’s Speech and Debate team before transferring to UCLA and winning medals at several competitions including the Gold award at the annual Phi Rho Pi National Forensic tournament, where she placed first overall in IPDA (International Public Debate). When she is not teaching debate, she is a full-time student at UCLA pursuing her bachelor’s degree in Anthropology with a minor in Professional Writing. She also works as a writing tutor at SMC, and previously volunteered with Reading Partners of LA as an elementary school reading tutor. Ms. Shaindi believes that everyone, no matter their age, has something worthwhile to say; sometimes they just don’t know how to say it! She loves teaching PAW’s in-person classes and has found it rewarding incorporating her Zoom expertise making Debate educational and FUN for kids learning online!
PERFORMING ARTS WORKSHOPS MISSION STATEMENT
Performing Arts Workshops is committed to ensuring that all school-aged children are provided the opportunity to experience a quality arts education through affordable after school enrichment and summer camp programming. The development of character and life skills which children can apply to school and beyond is a core principle of our mission.
PAW’s faculty and staff are dedicated to fostering a safe, non-competitive environment,
where children can use the arts as a medium with which to learn communication,
compassion, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity.