Ray Palasz, MA
Auditorium Director
Munster Theatre Company Producer/Director
International Thespian Society Troupe #2861 Director

Ray came to Munster in 2016 from Lake Central High School, where he spent 12 years working on nearly every aspect of theatre, from directing to designing to building, and yes, even acting! While at Lake Central, he re-chartered their troupe of the International Thespian Society in January of 2005. His directing credits include Lives of the Saints, Tartuffe, It's a Wonderful Life, Don Quixote, Drum Taps, As You Like It, and The Harvey Girls, which won the Regional Championship in 2012 and placed 5th at State in 2013. Drum Taps performed in 2014 at the International Thespian Festival in Lincoln, Nebraska. Ray also served as technical director for several musicals and summer community productions at Lake Central.Ray grew up in nearby Lansing, Illinois, and attended T. F. South High School. Between the sixth and twelfth grades, he worked on over twenty productions, helping lead T. F. South to two consecutive state championships in Readers Theatre.

After graduating high school, Ray attended Valparaiso University, where he majored in English Education and Theatre and Television Arts. While at Valpo, Ray worked on many productions as actor, director, designer, stage manager, and technician.

He currently is the Co-Chapter Director for the Indiana Thespians, and has served on the nominating committee for the Educational Theatre Association. He is also a member of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology.

In 2012 Ray earned his MA in literature and composition from Purdue University Calumet. In 2015, he married his wife Courtney, a midde school choir teacher. They have a beautiful son, Elias, who hasn't quite decided if he wants to be a performer or a technician just yet!

   

Andrew Robinson, M.M.T.
High School Choir Director
Munster Theatre Company Music Director/Pit Conductor

Andrew Robinson is Choir Director at Munster High School and Music Director/Pit Conductor for the Munster Theatre Company.  He directs four curricular choirs and two extracurricular choirs at MHS, teaches introductory piano and electronic keyboard classes, and is Co-Director of the Elementary Gifted and Talented Honors Choir.  The MHS choirs maintain an active performance schedule, with multiple appearances at community functions, school concerts, and regional and state contests throughout the year.  Additionally, MHS singers are frequently selected for top state, regional, and national honor choirs. 

Coupled with his school duties, Andrew is Director of Youth and Children’s Music at Christ Lutheran Church in Valparaiso, and he is presently serving as Co-Interim Music Director.  Additionally, he is an active composer and arranger.  His compositions have won First Prize in a contest in Washington, D.C. and have been performed at three state music education conferences.

Prior to his Munster appointment in 2016, Andrew taught K-5 general music in La Porte, IN; 9-12 choir, music theory, music history, and drama in Armstrong, IA; and 3-8 choir and general music in Algona, IA.  He assisted the high school choral departments in Crown Point, IN and Avon Lake, OH.  Before starting at Christ Lutheran Church, Andrew held traditional and contemporary music posts at three other churches.  He enjoys piano accompanying and has done so for concerts and contests at several schools.

Andrew has a passion for theatre that begin in high school, when he played “Uncle Max” in Pickerington High School Central’s production of The Sound of Music.  He acted – and continues to act – in musicals, straight plays, and opera.  Upon entering the professional world, he has been Director, Technical Director, and Music Director for productions in multiple school districts in Ohio, Iowa, and Indiana. 

Andrew earned a Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, in Vocal Performance with a minor in theatre from Valparaiso University in 2010, where he was also a Christ College (Honors College) Scholar.  In 2011, he completed the Master of Music Teaching (M.M.T.) degree, with a choral/vocal concentration, at Oberlin College Conservatory of Music.  Andrew is a member of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), Indiana Choral Directors Association (ICDA), NAfME: The National Association for Music Education, and the Indiana State Teachers Association (ISTA).  He is married to Brooke, an elementary music teacher in Crown Point.