Elise Marinkovich – Drama Club Advisor/Director
This is Mrs. Marinkovich’s ninth year at Francis Parker. When she first came to Parker she created the middle school drama club. A few years later it became a sixth through twelfth club. It is thrilling for her to be able to work with the students for six to seven years and see them grow into amazing human beings. The club has grown in many ways each year with a Drama Club officer board and a mentor program.
“Mrs. M” hails from the Bay Area where she worked as drama teacher/director at Hillbrook School in Los Gatos. She was also an Associate Artist with Peninsula Youth Theatre, a professional children’s theatre company in Mountain View, California. While there she directed Footloose, Les Miserables, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, West Side Story, Honk!, The Wizard of Oz and The Sound of Music – twice! She was also involved and directed shows for their Stories on Stage program and their Theatre in the Park summer program. Mrs. M has also worked extensively in the Bay Area with the following theatre companies; Hillbarn Theatre, Starting Arts, Teatro de la Esperanza, Palo Alto Players, Los Altos Youth Theatre, Eureka Theatre, and Bay Area Educational Theatre.
Last season marked Mrs.M 100th show! She cannot believe it and is grateful that she got to mark the occasion with her Parker family. She considers herself fortunate to do something she loves as a job!
Ian Brandon – Music Director
Ian moved to San Diego from London (after a few years in Washington D.C.) where he served as a Music Director and Composer in the West End and on the London Fringe. He studied at the London School of Musical Theatre and Leeds University and has been Musically Directing school and college productions for nearly 20 years. Past favorite productions include Spring Awakening, Ragtime, Pippin, The Wild Party, Violet, Heathers, Once On This Island, Sister Act, Bare, Crazy For You, Hair, Xanadu, Songs For A New World, Bat Boy, Children of Eden, Parade and In The Heights. He was the resident Composer and Music Director at St Bride Foundation’s Youth Theatre Program for over 5 years and he writes, arranges and performs with the award-winning Musical Comedy act Scales of the Unexpected. Ian has also worked extensively in the U.K. as an Actor, Vocal Arranger, Orchestrator and Vocal Coach and he has written original music and songs for numerous short films, plays and recordings. His songs have been performed in the West End, London Fringe and Off-Broadway.
Erica Buechner – Choreographer
A local to San Diego, Erica Buechner has been professionally choreographing, teaching, and performing since 1999. She has worked at Francis Parker since 2012 as the Drama Club choreographer and since 2015 as the Middle and Upper School dance teacher. Ms. Buechner obtained her Master of Fine Arts in Dance from Hollins University/American Dance Festival in 2013 and obtained her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from San Diego State University in 2006. She has danced professionally with many local companies and continues to perform as a guest artist at times as well as in her own works. She is the co-producer of youTurn Arts, an annual arts event, and is the director of Sound Dance Company. Ms. Buechner is the 2018-2019 recipient of the Creative Catalyst fellowship grant through the San Diego Foundation.
Geronimo Omabtang – Technical Director
Geronimo Omabtang is a theatre product of San Diego State University, graduating in 2003 with a Bachelors of Arts in Theatre, with an Emphasis in Design. Throughout college life he had been wonderfully employed by a local theme park, SeaWorld San Diego, working as a Theatrical Lighting Technician, and as a Scenic Arts Craftsperson. In professional theatre, Geronimo was the Technical Director for Sushi Performance and Visual Art until their closing. Independently, Geronimo has had the honor of working in the many performing arts venues in San Diego, as a designer, technician, and performer, making him a person of many hats.