Staff & Production Team
Yvonne A.K. Johnson (Executive Artistic Director) is the founder and leader of the
award-winning Spokane Valley Summer Theatre and future Idaho Central Spokane
Valley Performing Arts Center producing musical theatre and an educationally focused
Conservatory program for students grades 2-12. Her talent and professional
management base extends from artists performing on Broadway, the West End and
regionally across the country. Johnson holds several advanced theatre degrees
including a B.A. at Carthage College in Speech, Communications and Theatre, an M.A.
in Contemporary Theatre Practice from the University of Essex in Colchester, England
and an M.F.A. in Directing from Minnesota State University. From 1996 until 2001,
Johnson served as the Artistic Director of Kassiopia Theatre Company in London,
England. She then became Company Director and Producer of the national award-
winning CLIMB Theatre, Inc. in Minnesota’s Twin Cities followed by Executive Artistic
Director for the national award-winning Spokane Civic Theatre. While residing in New
York during the initial formative years of SVST, her independent work in board
development, strategic planning and talent management had her traveling coast to
coast working with various artists and institutions. Over the past 30 years, she has
produced and directed over 250 productions for various schools, universities,
community and professional theatres throughout the U.S. and United Kingdom. Johnson
has continually been an advocate for Theatre in Education throughout her career,
previously founding two Academy programs for youth grades K–12 at Carroll College in
Waukesha, Wisconsin and establishing the Spokane Civic Theatre Academy in
Spokane, Washington in addition to SVST/SVPAC’s Conservatory. Johnson has
received numerous accolades and recognitions for directing and producing throughout her tenure. Most recently she received a 2022 Governor’s Arts and Heritage Award in Leadership, a 2022 Women in Business Leadership Award, a 2021 Difference Maker Award and the 2021 Governor’s Arts & Luminary Award for SVST. As an Executive
Artistic Director, Johnson has a proven track record of producing high quality artistic
productions with record breaking financial success. She has led several capital
campaigns throughout her career with the culmination being a beacon of light and hope for the region, Idaho Central Spokane Valley Performing Arts Center. Shine on Team SVST/ICSVPAC!
Anne M. “Marnie” Rorholm (Managing Director) is a Gonzaga University MBA PhD (Leadership Studies), obtaining her undergraduate business degree at Santa Clara University. She is the inaugural winner of the Eva Lassman Memorial Grant for Holocaust research and serves on the Editorial Board for the Journal of Hate Studies. Dr. Rorholm is a published author and 2020 Greenleaf Scholar, researching the intersection of servant-leadership and her dissertation topic, interruptive symbology. Dr. Rorholm has worked in higher education and in municipal government, where she served in Business and Developer Services, and as the Director of the Mayor’s Office for the City of Spokane. She has been a long-time supporter of the performing arts in the Northwest region, including as a SAG-eligible actress herself, represented by Ryan Artists Inc. in Portland, Oregon. She is a military spouse and mother to two college-aged sons who study theatre arts at Marquette University and St. Mary's University of Minnesota. She looks forward to connecting the government and local business communities to the professional arts community, to create a vibrant live-theatre scene that contributes significantly to tourism and the local economy.
Melody Chang Heaton (Communications & Marketing Director) is a fiercely dedicated arts marketer with years of experience in the theatre and classical music industries. Having earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Washington State University, she understands the nuances and complexities of arts organizations. Melody was most recently the Director of Marketing for Inland Northwest Opera. Her automotive and mechanical skills shined when she joined the team that built INO’s widely-acclaimed Opera Truck, allowing INO to bring opera to regional youth. A fervent advocate for equity in the arts, Chang Heaton serves as Executive Director of the Asian Opera Alliance. In recent years, Ms. Chang Heaton has been seen onstage with the Spokane Symphony, Inland Northwest Opera, and Spokane Valley Summer Theatre.
Katie Guarisco (Business Administration Officer) is a lifelong resident of Spokane Valley and a graduate of Eastern Washington University. Katie brings a wide variety of experience from different industries to SVST/ICSVPAC. She has worked for successful advertising agencies as project manager and media buyer for local and national clients. Katie has owned two award-winning business with her husband, one in the restaurant industry and the other in the advertising industry where she was both office manager and bookkeeper. She has been married for 34 years and has 3 adult children. Katie is excited to be a part of the SVST/Idaho Central Spokane Valley Performing Arts Center team and the exciting opportunities it brings to our region!
Collin J. Pittmann (Production Manager) is a director, stage manager, and actor. Currently, Collin is pursuing an MFA in Theatre Directing at the UK’s #1 Drama School - East15 (London). A 2021 graduate of Texas Christian University, Collin double majored in theatre and broadcast journalism. His TCU credits include arranger and director of the award-winning Wonder Women: Celebrating Women’s Roles on Broadway, stage manager of Children of Eden, The Melody Lingers On, The Pajama Game and Assistant Director of 42nd Street. An involved theatre artist and Spokane native, Collin serves as Production Manager for the award-winning Spokane Valley Summer Theatre (SVST). His recent credits at SVST include production stage manager for The Bridges of Madison County, Sister Act, Little House on the Prairie, The Sound of Music and Into The Woods. Pittmann was recognized as an 'Emerging Leader' by his Alma mater, TCU, in 2023. He is thrilled to continue his work with SVST and looks forward to a lifelong career in theatre and education.
Linay Robison (Resident Costume Designer) is pleased to be returning as Costume Designer for her 4th season with Spokane Valley Summer Theatre. Linay began sewing and making costumes at a young age. After a career in International Banking she returned to her first love of art and costume design. Linay began helping with costumes for SVST shows with Always Patsy Cline and The Secret Garden, then added puppet creation to the costume design for Into the Woods and The Sound of Music. Loving what we do and having fun doing it makes it not seem like work at all.
Logan Tiedt (Senior Lighting Designer) is graduating from Southern Oregon University with a BFA in Lighting Design and BS in Music. In his fourth season with SVST, he designed both The Sound of Music and Mamma Mia!. Past credits include Elektra (SOU); Into the Woods (SVST); The Secret Garden (SVST). He has also designed for the Oregon Fringe Festival and the Oregon Center for the Arts at SOU (Music and Theatre Performances).
Amanda Guarisco (Front of House Coordinator) Amanda is a recent graduate of Eastern Washington University. During her time at Eastern she earned a double major in Secondary English Education and Theatre. She has also received her Career and Technical Education certification in Technical Theatre and Design. Amanda currently teaches at University High School as the Theatre Director. Amanda has been involved in Spokane Valley Summer theatre since its inaugural year in 2016. She has worn many hats during her time with SVST. Amanda has been an actor, stage manager, worked in the box office, and has been a production coordinator. She is also very excited to continue her journey with SVST as a teen camp director. Amanda is eternally grateful for the opportunities SVST has provided and cannot wait to see what the future holds. Amanda’s recent credits include Home for the Holidays: A Big Band Christmas (SVST, stage manager) Mamma Mia! (SVST, actor), Sound of Music (SVST, actor), Always, Patsy Cline (SVST, stage manager), Heathers (EWU, actor), Wild Dust (EWU, actor), Bring it On! (SVST, actor).
Daniel Urzika (Senior Audio Engineer) is a lifelong musician, singer and techie. After getting involved with audio visual production at a young age, Daniel decided to pursue audio engineering as a career. He joined SVST during their 2019 season, working on Always... Patsy Cline, The Sound of Music, and Mamma Mia!. His more recent credits include the 2021 season's Under the Stars, and Little House on the Prairie. Daniel is thrilled to have found a home in SVST, and cannot wait to keep sharing the gift that is live theatre with our community.
David Baker (Technical Director) is a Theater Designer and Technical Director with over 30 years of professional experience. A born Washingtonian, David received his bachelor’s degree in Drama at the University of Washington before earning a Master’s in Fine Arts in Theater Production at Southern Methodist University, Dallas. David is pleased and excited to be with SVST for his fourth season. Although relatively new to the organization, he is not new to theatre in the Spokane area where he has worked a number of years and has compiled multiple credits in scenic and lighting design, and technical direction in dozens of productions.