In a career that spans 34 years, Michael Card has recorded over 37 albums, authored over 25 books, hosted a radio program, and written for a wide range of magazines. While he has penned such favorites as “El Shaddai”, “Love Crucified Arose”, and “Emmanuel,” He never imagined selling more than 4 million albums or writing over 19 #1 hits. The popularity of his work seemed a stark contrast to his goal in life, to simply and quietly teach the Bible.
Although music provided him the opportunity to share insight gained through extensive research, writing songs alone limited what he felt called to share. Card would frequently agonize over having to condense the vast depth and richness of scripture into a three-minute song. And so he fell, quite naturally, into the field of book writing where he has garnered numerous awards.
Never one to compartmentalize his spiritual life, Card’s quest for community slowly seeped into his professional life as he began to write articles and books on topics that captured his imagination through conversations with Bible teachers, friends and contemporaries in both Christian music and the academic community.
“Thomas Merton said, ‘The least of learning is done in the classroom,’ and he is so right,” says Card. “The bulk of what I’ve learned whether academically, musically, or personally is through interacting with people, which is why I think community is so important to our growth as Christians.”
In everything he does, Card seeks to encourage his audience to join in his own journey to know and be known by God by asking questions and entering into meaningful discussion with one another. Card’s vision is to edify the body of Christ around the world by sharing experiences and resources in the context of community in order to help facilitate the growth of smaller and more intimate communities within his audience’s own churches and neighborhoods.
To that end, Card has branched out beyond the music which made his name known within the Christian community into the various mediums he uses today; another reason why Card sees the importance of continuing to teach at conference centers like Glen Eyrie, The Cove, Columbia Bible College, Maranatha Bible College, and even on a regular basis at his home church.
Whether it’s through his writings, concerts, or teaching, the core of what binds these seemingly diverse endeavors together is biblical community. It is at the heart of everything Michael Card does.
“The one thing we strive to achieve is to reach people where they are,” explains Card. “whether it’s my work or the work of someone else, there is a greater chance of reaching more people, who in turn will reach out to others in their own community.”
Michael is a graduate of Western Kentucky University, where he earned his bachelors and master degrees in biblical studies. Michael has also received honorary PhD’s in music and Christian education from Whitfield Seminary and Philadelphia Biblical University.
Michael lives in Franklin, Tennessee, where, with a group of close friends, he pursues racial reconciliation and neighborhood renewal. He and his wife, Susan, have four children and one grandchild.
Musician, Bible Teacher, Author
Colin Smith is the pastor of Berean Baptist Fellowship in northeastern Pennsylvania. His love for the Scriptures and passionate exposition of them is infectious. Pastor Colin places a heavy emphasis on studying the Scriptures in their literal, grammatical, and historical context. The Word of God becomes rich with deeper meaning to the hearers under his skilled teaching.
Pastor Colin Smith
Dr. Warren Gage studied at the Southern Methodist University, BA, Summa Cum Laude; Dallas Theological Seminary, ThM, Highest Honors; Southern Methodist University School of Law, JD; University of Dallas, MA, PhD (Political Philosophy); and University of Tübingen (Germany), Post-graduate studies. He currently teaches at Knox Theological Seminary.
He believes that students should be trained to preach the Word, be prepared in season and out of season, to correct, rebuke, and encourage – with great patience and careful instruction (2 Timothy 4:2-3).
Prior to entering ministry, Dr. Gage spent ten years as a trial attorney. He was national counsel for a multi-billion dollar defense contractor based in Washington, DC.
Dr. Gage wrote the curriculum for the Christian and Classical Studies program at the seminary. He has written twelve books on the theme of biblical theology, ten titles published through Logos Bible Software. Three of these titles are on the resurrection of Jesus in the Old Testament. He also has published articles in various academic journals such as Crux and the Westminster Theological Journal.
When not teaching, Dr. Gage enjoys the Great books, conversation with friends, World War II history, and all things German. He is married and has two children.
Dr. Warren Gage
With his impressive roster of high profile projects and clients, and a long list of credits encompassing a great diversity of musical styles spanning over 25 successful years, John Campbell is fulfilling a dream that began at a very young age, beginning with his family’s musical talents.
John studied at Dick Grove Music of Studio City, CA, graduating with degrees in both Composition and Film Scoring. He learned how to ‘paint’ a soundtrack using music instead of colors. After college, John continued to develop his musical talent by arranging and performing with numerous bands and orchestras, including a stint as musical director and keyboardist for singer Debbie Boone. His work with Debbie led him to other notable artists and groups such as Larry Norman, the Maranatha! Praise Band, Michelle Pillar, Chicago, Eddie Van Halen, and Loverboy.
John honed his film and television skills composing music for such Emmy Award television shows as “Where on Earth is Carmen San Diego” (Fox), and “Higglytown Heroes” (Disney), as well as scores for films, including “A Month of Sundays” (DeLaurentiss Entertainment), and “A Vow to Cherish” (Worldwide Pictures in association with Billy Graham). In addition, he composed the theme and many of the scores for Focus On The Family’s award-winning Adventures in Odyssey series, Radio Theatre productions and Lamplighter Theatre.
Digital Music Composition
Cathy is a professional actress in the UK, married to a Methodist Minister and is the Deputy CEO and Head of Overseas Development for ‘Talitha’ – a charity that offers arts based therapeutic workshops in the UK and for teenage trafficking victims in India. She won the Carleton Hobbs BBC Radio Award upon leaving Drama School and has enjoyed leading roles such as Lucy Honeychurch in A Room With A View, Lauren Walsh in The Archers and most recently, Phillida Trant in three episodes of Rumpole of the Bailey, opposite Benedict Cumberbatch, to be transmitted March 2015.
For Lamplighter Theatre, Cathy played Mary in The Basket of Flowers, Marietta Gray in Jessica’s Journey and for Focus on the Family, she worked on Oliver Twist, played Martha in The Secret Garden and Nancy in Silas Marner. Her Theatre work embraces Shakespeare through to Stiffy Byng in the musical ByJeeves in London’s West End. On television her roles span from murdering drug addicts to Queen Victoria, Mrs. Drake (the tenant farmer’s wife) in the first two series of Downton Abbey, and opposite Iain Glen as Mrs Mulligan in Breathless (2013). She played Sybil Grey/Peep-Bo in Mike Leigh’s Oscar winning movie Topsy-Turvy and Mrs. Jerome in The Woman in Black starring Daniel Radcliffe (2012).
Philip Glassborow is a playwright, lyricist and composer who writes for theater, radio and television. His best known theater musical is the hit, The Great Big Radio Show!
He has dramatized many classic books for radio including Billy Budd, Sailor, Christopher Himself, The Secret Garden, and Silas Marner.
For BBC Radio, Philip compiled and presented The Gorey Details based on the work of Edward Gorey. Recently the BBC aired a broadcast about the Titanic entitled Never Again, written and directed by Philip.
His BBC television credits include Play Away, The Sunday Gang and a dramatization of The Princess Who Couldn’t Laugh. Philip was the scriptwriter for Winchester: Chronicles of Light, which will be performed live at Winchester Cathedral. He has served as Lamplighter Theatre’s London casting director.
Christopher Parkening is celebrated as one of the world’s preeminent virtuosos of the classical guitar. At the heart of his dedication to performance, recording, and teaching is a deep commitment to the Christian faith.
For over 40 years his concerts and recordings have received the highest worldwide acclaim. Parkening’s rare combination of dramatic virtuosity, eloquent musicianship and uniquely beautiful sound has captivated audiences around the world. Parkening has been guest soloist with the finest orchestras in the United States, including the Philadelphia, Cleveland and Minnesota Orchestras, the Chicago, Pittsburgh, and National Symphony Orchestras, the Detroit, Houston, Oregon, and St. Louis symphonies, the New York Philharmonic, the St. Paul and Los Angeles Chamber Orchestras, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl.
The Washington Post cited his stature as “the leading guitar virtuoso of our day, combining profound musical insight with complete technical mastery of his instrument.” Parkening is recognized as heir to the legacy of the great Spanish guitarist Andrés Segovia, who proclaimed that “Christopher Parkening is a great artist – he is one of the most brilliant guitarists in the world.” The Los Angeles Times has noted: “Parkening is considered America’s reigning classical guitarist, carrying the torch of his mentor, the late Andrés Segovia.”
Christopher Parkening, his wife Theresa, and their son, Luke, reside in Southern California.
John Morgan travels as "the face" of President George W. Bush at corporate, comedic, and faith-based events around the world, bringing joy and inspiration to millions of astonished people who might otherwise never have an audience with America's Commander in Chief. With a small cadre of "Secret Service" agents stationed around him, John nods his head and greets the crowd with the President's trademark Texas drawl. John's show combines his hilarious but respectful impression of President Bush with a few famous George W. faux pas, blended with a mix of parody songs and finishes up with an inspiring message about hope and determination. He elicits heartfelt laughter from both sides of the political aisle.
Discovered at a "Bush For President" rally in 2000, Morgan went from selling appliances to performing at the President's Inaugural. By 2007, John was bringing his big- time comedic impersonation to arenas all across America, appearing live before tens of thousands on Sean Hannity's "Freedom Concerts" and before hundreds of thousands on "The Winter Jam Tour Spectacular," where he amazed audiences with his guitar playing and singing.
He has been on America's Got Talent, The Family Feud, Headline News, Hannity & Colmes, E! Entertainment Network, ABC's "The View," and The 700 Club. Fans even voted him a finalist on ABC TV's celebrity reality show, "The Next Best Thing." John was awarded America's # 1 Bush Impressionist along with two "Mirror Image" awards and a 2005 Cloney award for "Best Historical Impersonation" voted on by his peers. Has also been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, and interviewed in dozen’s of newspapers such as The Sunday London Times.
John was born and raised in Orlando, Florida. He and, his wife of 29 years, Kathy, still reside in sunny Orlando with their four sons, Christopher, Stephen, Daniel and Jonathan, two wonderful daughters-in-law, and three exciting grandkids. John's inspiring journey is chronicled in print. My Life as a Bush…and My Heart for Imitating Jesus, with forward by Governor Mike Huckabee, is filled with laugh-out-loud stories, audacious encounters, and spiritual insights. Each chapter of John's story encourages readers to become imitators of the greatest Man who ever lived.
Peter has worked as an actor and musician, performing around the world with companies such as the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre, in venues as varied as The Royal Albert Hall and St. Paul’s Cathedral.
As a writer and composer, his work has been performed at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and as far afield as Singapore. Peter has also written original music. As a singer/songwriter, Peter has performed in places such as the Royal Albert Hall and the Royal Festival Hall. He recently completed a series of concerts of Blues and Jazz standards, piano improvisations and original songs in St. Paul's Cathedral, London.
Peter is the co-creator and artistic director of Applecart, an innovative live storytelling and film production company. Applecart rediscovers traditional stories and delivers them live and kicking to a modern-day audience.
One of the most respected Chesterton scholars in the world, Dale Ahlquist is President of the American Chesterton Society, creator and host of the EWTN series “G.K. Chesterton: The Apostle of Common Sense,” and Publisher of Gilbert Magazine. He is the author of three books on Chesterton, including The Complete Thinker.
An internationally sought-after speaker, Dale has given over 400 lectures at major colleges and universities and other venues, including Yale, Columbia, Cornell, Notre Dame, Oxford, and many more.
Dale is the co-founder of Chesterton Academy, a new high school in Minneapolis, Minnesota, that is centered on Chesterton’s ideas of integrated learning. He is also the executive producer of Manalive, a film based on a novel by G.K. Chesterton, which will be released in 2012.
Dale received a B.A. from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, and a M.A. from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. He and his wife Laura have six children.
In the last 20 years Dr. Jeff Myers has become one of America's most respected authorities on youth leadership development and is currently Summit Ministries President.
As a communicator, Dr. Myers weaves together biblical insight, penetrating social commentary, fascinating research, and hilarious personal stories to motivate and challenge listeners. His inspiring presentations have delighted audiences of teachers, business leaders, parents, and young adults, renewing their enthusiasm for passing the baton of godly faithfulness.
Through the years he has been a student and served as a summer staff volunteer, instructor, and most recently, chairman of Summit's board of directors. From 1989 to 1995 Dr. Myers headed up the Summit's curriculum team as it produced the Understanding the Times and Lightbearers courses for Christian schools. In 1997 Dr. Myers completed his dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree at the University of Denver and accepted a faculty appointment at Bryan College in Dayton, Tennessee, where he has taught undergraduate and MBA courses in leadership and communication for 14 years. While at Bryan, Dr. Myers also founded and directed an eastern U.S. branch of Summit's youth and adult programs. In 2006, Dr. Myers, along with a small team formed a non-profit organization called Passing the Baton International to teach Christian leadership.
Dr. Myers' many books and video courses include Of Knights and Fair Maidens, Playpen to Podium, Secrets of Great Communicators, Secrets of the World-Changers, Secrets of Everyday Leaders, Handoff, and, most recently, Cultivate: Forming the Emerging Generation through Life-on-Life Mentoring. Jeff Myers and his wife Danielle have been married for almost 17 years, and are parents to two sons and two daughters ranging in age from 7 to 14.
Dr. Jeff Myers
Ira Krizo is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in New York, with over 12 years of gourmet cooking experience in France, Australia, Virginia, Colorado, Arizona, Southern California and Portland, Oregon. He and his wife owned and operated a fine dining restaurant for 2.5 years and he has also been the co-chef at one of Portland's largest off-site catering companies.
Past employments, current business ownership and chef-instructing has given Ira a great deal of experience in training, hiring/firing, motivation and coordinating staff. He is experienced in negotiation and coordination, event management such as weddings and special events such as winemaker's dinners and cooking classes, working with vendors and companies to get the best prices and products to provide the best quality food possible, with or without a budget and has been involved in the opening of 5 different food-service operations.
George D. Escobar is vice president of WND Films and TV, in charge of programming, production and strategy. He directed “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment” for WND Films, which became Amazon’s No. 1 Faith DVD for 75 weeks. Most recently he directed “The Harbinger Man” and co-produced with WND CEO Joseph Farah, “Global Jesus Revolution” and “End Times Eyewitness.” Currently, George is developing the feature film production of “Trapped In Hitler’s Hell,” the true story of Holocaust survivor Anita Dittman.
George is co-founder of Advent Film Group, created to produce Christian films and train Christian filmmakers. AFG's inaugural movie, “Come What May,” was seen by over 3.5 million people online and on TV. His narrative films include “Hero” (as producer/editor), “The Screenwriters” (as executive producer), and “Alone Yet Not Alone,” which he co-wrote/co-directed and co-produced for Enthuse Entertainment. “Alone Yet Not Alone” was Oscar nominated for Best Original Song.
George has more than 20 years of experience in film, television, and interactive media. Before founding AFG, he was Vice President of Product Development for Discovery, Executive Director for AOL/Time Warner, and a producing fellow at the American Film Institute. In his career, George has worked for top executives in the industry, including Howard Stringer (Sony CEO), Sandy Grushow and David Grant (Fox), Kit Laybourne (TELE-TV), and Kim Friedman (TV director). He holds seven U.S. patents in technology and user interface design and has taught filmmaking to over 3,500 students. George and his wife homeschooled their three sons.
Film Producer, Writer, and Director
For more than twenty years now, Andrew Peterson has been about the business of quietly changing lives in four-minute increments. In the city of Nashville where music is an industry in the same way fast food, generic greeting cards, and bumper stickers are industries, Peterson has forged his own path, refusing the artistic compromises that so often come with chasing album sales and radio singles and creating instead a long line of songs that ache with sorrow, joy and integrity, and that are, at the end of the day, part of a real, ongoing, human conversation.
A highly respected songwriter in the Christian music community, Andrew Peterson's career began in the mid-'90s with his first independent release, an eight-song EP called Walk. While touring the country with wife, Jamie, Peterson caught his first break when popular CCM band Caedmon's Call invited him on their 1998 tour. This increased exposure led to his signing with Watershed/Essential Records and the 2000 release of his first proper album, Carried Along. A pastor's son, the Illinois-born, Florida-bred Peterson imbued his rootsy, folk-rock style with a strong Christian message, taking influence from veteran singer/songwriter Rich Mullins. In the coming years, he would establish himself with strong albums like Love & Thunder, The Far Country, and Resurrection Letters, Vol. 2. Along the way, Peterson's many collaborations with musicians in and outside the Christian community bolstered his image as a creative and versatile artist. In 2006, he and a number of other like-minded singer/songwriters formed a musical collective called the Square Peg Alliance. A year later, he made his debut as an author with his first children's book, The Ballad of Matthew's Begats. In tandem with his increasingly successful musical career, Peterson furthered his writing career, publishing the first novel of his four-part fantasy/adventure series The Wingfeather Saga in 2008. He also launched the publishing company and creative writing blog The Rabbit Room. A 2014 anthology called After All These Years: A Collection was released by Centricity celebrating his impressive back catalog, and in late 2015 his 11th studio album, The Burning Edge of Dawn, reached number three on the Billboard Christian chart, becoming his most successful release to date.
"Let me be completely honest with you. Sometimes I’m sick of music. I’m sick of the road. I miss my home and my family. That boyish thrill of being in a different city every night is long gone. It’s been twenty years since I first started doing concerts, and I’m no longer surprised when people tell me I look tired—I always look tired. But, as some wise farmer somewhere surely said, nothing worth doing is ever easy. When I was a young man I heard a call as clear as day, and that call led me here, to a life of writing stories and singing songs, doing my small part to proclaim the Kingdom of God—both its presence and its coming consummation—and at no time do I remember hearing a promise that following that call would be easy."
Singer, Songwriter, Author
Mark Hamby (M.S., M.Div., Th.M., D. Min. cand.) is founder and president of Lamplighter Ministries, which consists of Lamplighter Publishing, Lamplighter Theatre, Lamplighter Guild, Lamplighter Life-Transforming Seminars and Lamplighter Moments Daily Radio Broadcast. He lives in Northeastern Pennsylvania with his wife, Debbie. They have been married for 34 years and have three adult children who were homeschooled.
If you have ever heard Mark speak, you know that he loves to tell stories! If you have ever heard him on the radio, you have heard his passion for God and His Word. Interviewed on numerous national programs including Family Life Today with Dennis Rainey, Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss, and Moody Bible Network’s Prime Time America, Mark shares the miracle story of how Lamplighter was birthed and how Lamplighter stories have a redemptive influence around the world.
What Mark is most passionate about is the Lamplighter Guild—a unique educational model which follows a rare principle of the early Renaissance masters called “Agon.” After discovering this principle in Scripture, Mark combined Renaissance training with Scriptural principles that have proven to motivate others toward the pursuit of Christ-like character and mastery skills.
After a professional career including stage work at theatres in Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse in plays such as “Amadeus”, “Harvey”, “Our Town”, “Brighton Beach Memoirs”, “The Shadow Box”, “The Miracle on 34th Street”, and personal comedic favorite and backstage extravaganza “Greater Tuna”, Patrick had managed to keep a family of four successfully fed and loved in the upstate NY area.
To assist with life’s needs, Patrick also became well known and professionally sought after as theatrical director of adults and children, which culminated in an 11-year residency as actor and director of the Children’s Theatre Program at Bristol Valley Theatre. At 35, after amassing a resume inclusive of voiceover work, commercials, industrial films, script writing, dinner theatre, a bit of stand up comedy, a full-length Christmas film for Reader’s Digest, and an opportunity to be the “Bill Nye, the Science Guy” poster boy for NYSEG, Patrick was tiring. It was at this time that Patrick accepted his greatest and most important role of his entire life—to be a God-directed, Spirit-led, servant of Jesus Christ!
Patrick walked out of the limelight and into HIS light, never intending to look back. After a short time as third grade instructor at the Christian school his daughters were attending, and a self-imposed decline in health due to the denial of God’s clear will, Patrick acquiesced to teaching a drama class at the high school level. God honored Patrick’s repentance by giving him not only a life-mission, a vision to keep it alive, a heart and a reason to act again, but also a scriptural vehicle to carry him onto the next and ever-expanding path to becoming God’s storyteller.
Now at 53 with three more children and four grand kids (and one on the way), Patrick has most recently performed in “St. John in Exile”, a one-man play depicting the time the apostle John spent exiled for his faith on the Isle of Patmos. Patrick still keeps busy with other projects, including writing two full-length plays, two books, and an occasional voiceover job or TV commercial.
Patrick joined the ranks of the Guild instructors in 2016 and is beyond ecstatic to return for his second year! He cannot wait to spend a short but intense time of exploration, inspiration and instruction with his stage-acting students.
Actor, Director, Playwright
Matthew Christian Harding was raised with the new-age teachings of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and the ascended masters. He quickly delved deeper into the occult of the Satanic Bible, Astral Projection and drugs. Addictions, broken relationships, and a belief in reincarnation brought him nearly to the point of suicide. But God revealed Himself to Matthew at several critical moments in his life, until the day he began reading the Word of God for the first time. He asked God to show him if it was actually true. The Word suddenly came alive, and in a matter of weeks, Matthew repented, believed, and confessed the Lord Jesus Christ as his savior.
Matthew graduated from St. Olaf College with an English degree, and he received a Masters in Special Education, Vision and Orientation & Mobility from the University of Arizona. He also attended the Sorbonne in Paris, and studied in Thailand. He now resides in Pearisburg, Virginia – where he writes and works as an Orientation and Mobility Specialist training the blind to travel. He and his wife Cassandra have four children who are being raised to love and obey their Lord.
Matthew has loved adventure ever since he was a child. His family, friends, and walk with the Lord have been the greatest adventure of all. Tiring of the same bedtime story routine with his children, he began to make up stories that got longer and more intricate, sometimes lasting for months. With his wife's encouragement, he began writing books. Foundlings was his first novel, followed by Paladins and Loresmen. He's currently working on a fourth Peleg Chronicles adventure and the Ebenezer’s Land picture books.
Matthew Christian Harding
You might call John Fornof “That Radio Drama Guy.” When he was a kid, he clutched his Panasonic RQ309S cassette tape machine close to his heart, and with his dad’s encouragement, started making his own radio adventures. His dream was to grow up to write and produce radio dramas. Sadly, no one was doing radio dramas anymore. It was sort of like, “Hey, when I grow up, I want to be a telegraph operator!”
Fast forward the tape machine to 1997. John was invited to write for the Adventures in Odyssey radio show — literally, a dream job. Since then, God has opened up opportunities for John to work on nine different audio drama series. He’s written over 130 episodes.
In 2009, he was asked to help launch Lamplighter Theatre with Mark Hamby. The popular program grew to over 1700 radio outlets in 29 countries. Lamplighter Theatre is on the verge of reaching a major milestone in its history — soon to become a daily radio show.
John and his team recently launched their newest audio drama with Heirloom Audio — The Extraordinary Adventures of G.A. Henty. (Note: This historic audio drama series was birthed here at the Lamplighter Guild!) Their show about William Wallace--“In Freedom’s Cause”—recently won four Voice Arts Awards in Los Angeles: Outstanding Audio Production, Outstanding Audio Engineering, Outstanding Narration and Outstanding Casting. It was also a finalist for the Audie Award.
As a director, John has had the privilege of working with many great actors including Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings, Rudy), Golden Globe Award-winner Joanne Froggatt (Downton Abbey), Kirk Cameron (Growing Pains, Fireproof), John Rhys Davies (Raiders of the Lost Ark, Lord of the Rings), Billy Boyd (Lord of the Rings), Skandar Keynes (Chronicles of Narnia), James Cosmo (Braveheart), Tom Baker (Dr. Who), and Anthony Daniels (Star Wars).
John wrote and helped develop the award-winning Ribbits! animated series with creator and former Disney producer Bob Garner. He’s also a published author with Zondervan, Thomas Nelson, Focus on the Family, and Tyndale and has won two regional Emmy awards for his television documentaries, along with a number of Telly Awards and Addy Awards.
But his most important creative work: John is dad to three amazing kids, Chris, Robert, and Melissa.
He’s taught at the Lamplighter Guild, the Oregon Christian Writers Conference, the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Academy, and the Christian Worldview Film Festival. He was also Time Person of the Year in 2006.
John is a graduate of the Act One Writing and Executive Program in Hollywood with an eye on the next dream -- film. Short version: John has fun! And who knows where that fast forward button will take him next?
Writing, Producing, and Directing
Award-winning composer Jurgen Beck was born in Germany and began his musical journey early in his life. His passion and interest in music was directed toward training on the trumpet, while at the same time picking up other instruments such as guitar, piano, and bass. His passion for harmonic structure stems from his early years of musical training and playing in a brass choir in Germany.
Having received a full scholarship, he moved to the USA in 1987 to continue his music studies at a college in Dallas, Texas. It was during that time that he began producing music for independent artists, allowing him to refine his skills not only as a composer, but in all aspects of music arrangement, recording, mixing, and mastering audio.
His love for film music essentially resulted in a natural transition from writing and producing music for artists to writing for film.
Jurgen is a creative composer who loves to explore the multi-faceted aspects of music and how it affects the listener. This gives him a unique ability - adding music to picture that engages the viewer’s emotive abilities to absorb the story. Whether it is composing for feature films, documentaries, commercials, or digital media, his passion is to bring whatever medium he writes for to life by adding a unique blend of electronic and orchestral elements.
Jurgen has been highly active with a number of popular productions lately ranging from his iconic score for the highly successful faith-based film Beyond the Mask, his music for the passion play The Thorn, and numerous television commercials and film trailers.
Rob started his career in radio at the age of seventeen as a disc-jockey at a 1,000 watt daylight AM Christian station in Boise, Idaho. KSPD was about the only station in town at the time that played contemporary Christian music, and, of course, Adventures in Odyssey.
After college, Rob began working at the Raymond Group agency in the Seattle area, producing Christian programming.
Rob and his wife arrived in Colorado Springs to work for Focus on the Family in 1994. Over the years, he held several positions there, including editing Doctor Dobson's daily radio program, producing Focus on the Family Weekend, and producing promotional material for Focus' internal agency, Briargate Media. He joined the Odyssey team in May of 1999. Later, he became the production engineer for Focus on the Family Radio Theatre.
Rob Jorgensen is now the creative muscle running the machine called Rojo Creative Studios, which began as a concept in 1998 with a used computer, a folding table, and one client. Today, Rojo Studios works with many of America’s best-known Christian ministries producing podcasts, radio commercials, audio books, and award-winning audio drama. Rojo has grown to include a network of professionals all over the country. Through a collaborative work environment on the web, audio production specialists, composers, actors, and artists are all available to work on projects. Rob is a two-time recipient of the Audio Publishers Association's Audie award.
When Rob is not producing radio drama, his interests orbit very closely around his work world. He is an avid collector of antique microphones, and he loves radio shows from the Golden Age. When he is not reading or playing his guitar, he spends as much time as possible with his wife and children. Rob and his family make their home in Florida.
Rob was an amazing addition to the Lamplighter Guild team in 2016, and we are pleased to bring him back to the seventh annual Guild for another week of top-notch sound design!
Joel Jost is a filmmaker from southern Alberta, Canada, best known for Jostie Flicks, a popular YouTube channel which he runs with his family. He has directed and produced over 80 short films, music videos, commercials, etc. He has also helped shoot several documentaries across the US and was part of a team shooting one in Europe. Joel has taught at the 2013, 2014, and 2015 guilds. He has a passion for using the language of film to be a culture changer, to bring honor and glory to God, and to make a difference in people's lives.
Kim Winey is passionate about photography, as demonstrated by her emotive 'outside the box' presentation of God's unfolding gifts. Kim's photojournalist approach produces images that are often described as "magazine style". In 2014, at the start of her fifteenth year in photography, Kim announced her 'retirement' from the wedding photography industry to focus her energy on Bootcamps (photography workshops) and Styled Shoots (themed shoots containing meticulously planned clothing and props, as well as a team of vendors and interns who collaborate to create unique photo experiences). She also continues to thrive on capturing babies, children, high school senior girls & couples, as well as 'Real life. Your life.' sessions (lifestyle/time-capsule sessions). In addition, Kim offers private mentoring, critiquing and in 2013 had her first "live-in-tern." She also continues to dabble in the hobby of food-photography, because once a foodie, always a foodie...
Kim Winey's photos have been featured in ads and articles, in The Knot (Pennsylvania & Delaware edition), Happenings Magazine, Susquehanna Style Magazine, Elizabeth Anne Designs Blog, Fabulously Wed Blog, as well as several other blogs, magazines and newspapers. She has enjoyed teaching photography classes throughout the years and provides private mentoring, both in-person and online. In addition to her photography work, Kim has also volunteered her gifts for Mount Joy Mennonite Church, The Walk for Sienna, The Remembering Zachary Project, Lancaster Mennonite School, and biennially accompanies the LMS Boys Soccer Team to Costa Rica where she documents their missions trip. She is also the school photographer at Summit Christian Academy, where she also volunteers as a teacher's aid in the High School Yearbook Class.
Kim will be returning to the Lamplighter Guild for her seventh year as a Master Teacher as well as the Guild's official photographer.
Phillip is the founder and director of Media Talk 101, a non-profit ministry dedicated to teaching media discernment in the light of following Christ. Phillip believes that every song is a sermon, every movie a message, every TV a teacher, and every word a weapon. He believes a picture is worth a thousand words.
Phillip is the author of the book, What Wouldn’t Jesus Do?Media Choices in the Light of Following Christ. He served for several years as co-pastor at Living Water Fellowship in Bulverde, Texas with Richard “Little Bear” Wheeler. He has written approximately one hundred songs and sings in churches, schools, festivals, prisons, camps, coffee houses, living rooms, and on the street.
Phillip is the writer and producer of Captivated, a documentary addressing the impact of media in our culture and the growing need for discernment. Captivated was chosen runner-up for best documentary at the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival and was selected as a finalist for best of festival.
Over the years Curt Morse has worked with nearly every major Christian ministry, including Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, Tyndale House Publishers, Child Evangelism Fellowship, Family Life, Christian Educators International, Sparrow Records, Mastermedia International, Zondervan Publications, Promise Keepers, Compassion International, and Family Matters, to name a few.
Curt began his career in media as an on-air radio personality in the early eighties and was heard for many years on one of Christian music’s leading radio stations, KYMS, in Southern California. In 1987 Curt joined the staff at Focus on the Family and for over eight years provided production and management to the Focus broadcast production team, eventually serving as Dr. James Dobson’s senior recording engineer. In 1995, he founded Skynet Media with the purpose of providing first-rate audio production and consulting. He is the voiceover coach for Mark Hamby, President of Lamplighter Ministries.
Ravi Zacharias is Founder and President of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM). Dr. Zacharias has spoken all over the world for 42 years in universities, notably Harvard, Cambridge, and Oxford University. He has addressed world leaders internationally, including the president’s cabinet and and the National Prayer Breakfasts in the seats of multiple governments. He has twice spoken at the Annual Prayer Breakfast at the United Nations, at the White House, the Pentagon, and The Cannon House. At the invitation of Billy Graham, Dr. Zacharias was a plenary speaker at the International Conference for Itinerant Evangelists in Amsterdam in 1983, 1986, and 2000. He is a distinguished lecturer with the Staley Foundation and has appeared on CNN, Fox, and other international broadcasts. His weekly one-minute radio program outlets worldwide. Various broadcasts and his television program are also translated on over 250 outlets in seventeen countries.
Dr. Zacharias was born in India and immigrated to Canada with his family twenty years later. While pursuing a career in business management, his interest in theology grew. He received his Master of Divinity from Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois. He held the chair of Evangelism and Contemporary Thought at Alliance Theological Seminary. Dr. Zacharias has been honored by the conferring of a Doctor of Laws degree from Asbury College, Kentucky and a Doctor of Sacred Theology from Liberty University, Virginia and others. He is Senior Research Fellow at Oxford University.
He has authored numerous books, including Can Man Live without God and Jesus Among Other Gods which were nominated for and the first awarded for a Gold Medallion. In all, Dr. Zacharias has authored or edited over twenty books.
RZIM is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with additional offices in Canada, India, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the Middle East, Hong Kong, Romania, Turkey, Austria, Spain, and South Africa. Dr. Zacharias and his wife, Margie, have three grown children. They reside in Atlanta.
Dr. Ravi Zacharias
Stephen Kendrick has dedicated his life to serving Jesus Christ and to making Him known around the world. He is a co-writer for the screenplays and books and the producer for the Kendrick Brothers' films. He has produced Facing the Giants, Fireproof, and Courageous with his brother Alex Kendrick and Sherwood Pictures.
Stephen has spoken to churches, conferences, and seminars around the nation, and has been interviewed by FOX and Friends, CNN, ABC World News Tonight, The Washington Post, and other media outlets. He is a co-founder and board member of the Fatherhood Commission. He graduated from Kennesaw State University and attended seminary before being ordained into ministry.
Stephen and his wife, Jill, live in Albany, Georgia, where they homeschool their six children. They are active members of Sherwood Church in Albany.
Dr. John Lawlor has taught Biblical Theology since 1970 at several esteemed Seminaries and Universities including Grand Rapids Theological Seminary, Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, and Baptist Bible Seminary where Mark Hamby was introduced to his teaching. Dr. Lawlor has spent the last 45 years steeped in the study of Old Testament narrative and the compositional strategy that informs the content, shape and meaning of the books of the Old Testament. His education includes a Ph.D., Drew University, M. Phil., Drew University, Th.M., Grace Theological Seminary, B.D., Grace Theological Seminary, B.A., Cedarville University. While serving as full time pastor and several interim pastorates, he was also involved in Archaeological Research in the Middle East (Jordan) from 1967-2004.
Currently retired from full-time teaching, Dr. Lawlor has 3 married daughters and 5 grandchildren.
Dr. John Lawlor
Kathy Wierenga Buchanan received a Bachelor's Degree from Taylor University and a Master's in Biblical Counseling from Colorado Christian University. Kathy resides in Colorado Springs where she’s served on staff at Focus on the Family, as a writer and director for Adventures in Odyssey. She also kept a Christian counseling practice.
Kathy has authored several novels for The Brio Series for teenage girls, including Double Exposure and Croutons for Breakfast. In addition, she’s written a number of devotional books for girls including Want More? Love, and the Guide to Being a Girl series, told from the perspective of Connie Kendall. Clubhouse Magazine features Kathy’s writing in a monthly column, along with occasional features.
She also writes for the Wildlife Story series. These audio dramas are written for human trafficking victims and their caretakers—using stories for therapy and healing.
Kathy has penned many popular shows for Lamplighter Theatre, including Charlie’s Choice,The White Gypsy and Teddy’s Button and has taught at the 2013, 2014, and 2015 Lamplighter Guilds.
Story Creation & Writing
Todd Busteed graduated with honors from Loyola University with a degree in Psychology. Todd's studio, GAP Digital, is committed to top quality audio, applied via innovative methods, to create message solutions for all who have a story to tell.
Since 1980 Todd has worked at his facility creating scores of radio dramas, including programs based on such classic stories as Victor Hugo's Les Miserables, C. S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia, and George Eliot's Silas Marner. He has produced 144 half-hour episodes of the drama series, Left Behind. This series is broadcast on over 700 radio stations. Recently he produced and narrated the NLT One Year Bible audio.
Todd also enjoys announcing sporting events, such as the National Criterium Championship and the Chicago Triathlon. Currently he does much of the sound design for Lamplighter Theatre’s audio dramas.
Comic-book superheroes comprised the bulk of Adam Clague's portfolio until age twelve, when he tested his skills at realistically rendering a grouping of soda cans. This work, entitled "Pop Art," gained Adam his first art award, a "Best of Show" at the Michigan State Fair. Since then, the challenge of accurately capturing visual reality has fueled Adam's passion for art.
The artist received his training at Pensacola Christian College, where he earned a Masters degree in Fine Arts. While pursuing his degree, Adam taught drawing and painting classes at the college. His own instruction came from master painter Brian Jekel, who gave expert teaching on the skills of representational painting. Today, Adam strives to faithfully depict his subjects while maintaining the intrinsic beauty of his chosen medium.
Adam credits Christ Jesus his Lord for his skills and for the ability to daily pursue art. He gladly directs all the glory for his work and life back to his Savior, who sacrificed everything for him.
Paul was given his first typewriter early in his childhood and hasn't stopped writing since. Although he received a college degree in journalism, Paul's first love was writing sketches and plays for Grace Baptist Church. From those efforts came his published drama collections for the prestigious Baker's Plays, and the Lillenas Publishing Co., Contemporary Drama Services, Group Books and Monarch/Gazelle Books in England.
In 1985 he moved to California where he worked with Continental Ministries and wrote plays for the nationally-renowned drama group The Jeremiah People. This led to his work as a freelance writer for the Focus on the Family radio drama called Family Portraits, which later became Adventures in Odyssey. Since joining the Focus staff as a writer in 1988, Paul has written over 300 half-hour episodes for Odyssey and has also written 22 tie-in novels. Paul served as Creative Director at Focus On The Family until 2015.
In addition to Adventures In Odyssey, Paul helped to create Focus On The Family Radio Theatre, writing and directing many of its productions. Milestones include the Peabody Award-winning Bonhoeffer: The Cost of Freedom, all seven books in CS Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia series, the acclaimed Father Gilbert Mysteries, the Audie-winning Life of Jesus, and The Screwtape Letters. Dickens' Oliver Twist is his latest adaptation.
His novels include Epiphany (nominated for a ECPA Gold Medallion Award) for Zondervan Books, and You Say Tomato with best-selling British writer Adrian Plass. He has authored the popular Zondervan novel The Mill House, and its sequel A Season of Shadows. Paul recently penned a pair of medical thrillers, TSI: The Gabon Virus and The Influenza Bomb, with Dr. Walt Larimore. His non-fiction includes Playwriting: A Study In Choices & Challenges for Lillenas and The Ultimate Youth Drama Book for Monarch/Gazelle.
More recently, his connections with the writings of CS Lewis have strengthened, with the release of The Annotated Screwtape Letters and the new RT drama, CS Lewis at War. A companion book to that drama will come out next year.
Paul and his wife Elizabeth live in Colorado Springs with their two children.
Creative Writing, Directing, Producing
Born and bred in Macon, Georgia, Buddy Greene benefited at an early age from the influences of a town and culture that produced the likes of Little Richard, Otis Redding, and the Allman Brothers Band. By age 10 he began playing to audiences around Macon and quickly established himself as a local talent worth watching.
Buddy’s first big break came with an invitation to join Jerry Reed’s band, and shortly thereafter he and new bride Vicki moved to Nashville. After touring the country, recording, and making numerous TV appearances with Reed, Buddy was given the opportunity to record an album of original gospel music which quickly brought him to the attention of gospel greats Bill & Gloria Gaither.
Through touring with the Gaithers and appearing on their Homecoming video series, as well as continuing to write and record his unique brand of gospel music, Buddy has built a solid reputation as a singer, songwriter, instrumentalist and talented performer with a distinct southern flavor. His virtuosity on the harmonica has distinguished him as an instrumental force to be reckoned with.
Buddy’s songwriting has gained him recognition as well, especially as the co-writer of the Christmas favorite, “Mary, Did You Know?”, recorded by many of today’s top recording artists, including Clay Aiken, Pentatonix, Kathy Mattea, Kenny Rogers & Wynonna, Natalie Cole, Glen Campbell, and Kathleen Battle, to name a few.
Buddy’s outstanding performances have taken him from Macon, GA to Billy Graham crusades, music festivals, concert halls, churches, pickin’ parties of every kind, and even Carnegie Hall.
Singer, Songwriter, Musician
Jeff Taylor grew up in Batavia, New York, and began playing accordion and keyboards in his dad’s band when he was 10. He studied classical piano at the Eastman School of Music and was leader of a small jazz/rock group when he was in the Air Force in Ohio. He has lived in Nashville since 1990.
Taylor counts among his performing highlights his two years as bandleader at the Ryman auditorium for the musical production Always....Patsy Cline, hundreds of shows as bandleader at Opryland theme park and on the General Jackson showboat, The Skaggs Family Christmas Tour, and many appearances on the Grand Ole Opry backing numerous artists.
He has recorded with Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, Harry Connick Jr., Keith and Kristyn Getty, Amy Grant, George Strait, The Chieftains, Martina McBride, Buddy Greene, Vince Gill and Ricky Skaggs. He was a featured artist on the Ricky Skagg’s and Kentucky Thunder Instrumentals album that won a Grammy in 2007 for Best Bluegrass Album.
Besides excelling on accordion and piano, he also shines on the concertina, penny whistle, mandolin and bouzouki.
Musician & Recording Artist
Sara Groves is a mom, wife, singer/ songwriter and recording artist with a passion for justice and a heart of mercy. In 1998, she left her job as a high school teacher to pursue what had been a joy and passion of hers since childhood.
Since the release of her first independent album, Sara has experienced many ups and downs in her walk with Christ that have ultimately formed her into a stronger and more confident woman of God. During this journey, she has developed into a highly respected singer and songwriter.
Sara has joined forces with International Justice Mission to advocate for victims of human trafficking for the past 8 years. She has been nominated for 7 Dove Awards and has produced a string of successful albums including her latest, Floodplain, which was inspired by the Mississippi River in her hometown, and speaks of God's provision.
Sara, her husband Troy, and their 3 children (Kirby, Toby & Ruby) reside in St. Paul where they cultivate an artist support community out of a 100-year old church called Art House North.
Singer, Songwriter, & Recording Artist
John William Doryk is an award winning film composer and sound designer who has been creating original music and sound design for over 25 years. He has had his works aired on The Discovery Channel, History Channel, PBS, NBC, BBC, ABC Nightline, FOX Network, Netflix, A&E Biography, and for Focus on the Family (Adventures in Odyssey/Radio Theater), Answers in Genesis Creation Museum, Compassion Intl, and many independent feature films and audio dramas.
In 2010, John received “Gold” at the Park City Film Music Festival for his work on the PBS series “For Love of Liberty:The Story of America’s Black Patriots” starring Halley Berry, Morgan Freeman, Samuel Jackson, Alan Rickman and General Colin Powell.
Recently, in addition to composing music and songs for Sight & Sound Theater’s latest musical “Samson” and providing original music for the PBS special “Unsung Heroes” produced by Ron Howard, he was supervising sound editor/sound designer on Stone Table Films latest feature film “Badge of Faith” as well as supervising sound editor for the feature film “Confessions of a Prodigal Son” starring Kevin Sorbo (currently featured on Netflix). He was also dialogue editor on Burns Family Studio's “Beyond The Mask” starring John Rhys Davies.
John is now working with Lamplighter Theater on recording and sound designing several new upcoming audio drama series. He currently resides in Colorado Springs, Colorado with his wife and two children.
Sound Designer & Composer
Lisa Mistiuk began her serious study of art in Germany. During this time she worked closely with several artists and professors developing her figure drawing skills. In 2004 she received a portfolio scholarship in Amsterdam to study art at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. Upon returning to her native California she began her studies at the Academy where she focused on oil painting, receiving her BFA with honors in 2009.
Lisa paints primarily in oils with an emphasis on the elements that make up our everyday lives. She has participated in various group and solo shows in the US and is pleased to have her work collected and commissioned internationally. She currently resides in Michigan with her husband, son and daughter. Her hope with her work is to continue discovering the meaning and beauty in everyday life and to share these discoveries with others.
Lisa taught at the 2014 Guild, and we are honored to welcome her back for another week of artistic excellence! To learn more about Lisa's art, visit her website.
Bob Garner began his television and film career by working for CBS television as a production assistant and backstage page for the Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour, The Carol Burnett Show, and The Red Skelton Show. Bob has also written segment and promotional material for a variety of other CBS shows, including MASH, All in the Family, and several CBS children’s shows.
His writing credits do not stop there, as Garner has written numerous entertainment articles, including special publicity for Ice Capades and dramatic short stories published by dailies and weeklies such as The Saturday Evening Postand the Los Angeles Times. His entertainment articles included “Whatever Happened to…”profiles on the original “Little Rascals” and the original “Mouseketeers.” He was also the co-author of the popular book, Disneyland, The First Quarter Century, a detailed chronology about the creation of Walt Disney’s first theme park.
After four years with CBS, Bob began a fifteen-year relationship with the Walt Disney Company in Los Angeles. During that time, he had the opportunity to utilize his skills as writer, director, and producer on a wide variety of major projects, including Magic Carpet ‘Round the World, The Twenty-First Century Begins…The Grand Opening of EPCOT Center, Walt Disney: Magic Moments, EPCOT Center…Behind the Scenes of Walt Disney’s Greatest Dream, production of all film and video shows for the Gene Autry Western Heritage Center in Los Angeles, production of all video and film shows produced for “The Living Seas” pavilion at EPCOT Center, and multiple radio/television commercials for all Disney Parks. As a result of one of the EPCOT projects, Garner had the opportunity to work with Marine Biologist/Geologist Dr. Robert Ballard, who located the wreck of the Titanic in 1985. That relationship led to Garner’s full-blown presentation on the Titanic’s inside story.
Continuing his relationship with CBS, Bob brought his production and writing skills to special CBS Network regional image campaigns (“The CBS Place To Be”). In addition, he wrote and produced the acclaimed one-hour live specials, “A Sea World Family Spectacular: Our Grand Opening and Baby Shamu to You.” These specials were broadcast live from six locations and featured more than thirty entertainers from network television shows! Later, Bob also wrote, produced, and directed Both Sides of the Story, an entertainment/documentary shot on location in Russia, hosted by Mary Hart of Entertainment Tonight.
Some of his most recent film projects were produced as motivational or “message” pieces where Garner was Executive Producer overseeing multiple projects that continue to “change and affect lives.” His work has included a special award-winning work for teens called, Sex, Lies &…The Truth, featuring Kirk Cameron and Chelsea Noble (released to public schools and for national television broadcast). He produced and directed a multi-part series (six volumes) titled “That the World May Know”, filmed on archeological locations in Israel and Turkey. Two seasonal NBC TV specials were also produced from that same series. Garner also produced and directed the eleven part series, “Bringing Up Boys.”
One of Garner’s creations for children is a computer animated series called “Ribbits” for ages three and up. Set in “Hoppers Landing…” “Tad,” Toad,” “Bully,” “Sally Mander,” “Bubblegum,” and others live adventures that are entertaining and educational – even for adults.
Recently, Garner co-produced and directed a special 90 minute “docu-tainment” show for Walt Disney Studio’s Home Video Division, “Disneyland: Secrets, Stories, & Magic.” Introduced by Leonard Maltin and hosted by Julie Andrews, the show commemorates 50+ years of the magic and dreams of Disneyland, a true national treasure.
Garner attended the University of North Carolina, Columbia College, and special seminars at the University of Southern California. His B.A. degree is in Television and Film Arts & Sciences.
Director, Producer, & Writer
Deb Hamby is an established oil painter, published writer, and art instructor. She is also an avid gardener and cook. Currently residing in Northeast Pennsylvania, Deb enjoys the dramatic lighting and rich textures of the area's rural landscape, dotted with pristine lakes and working farms.
Master Oil Painter
Throughout his lifetime Dr. Lew has expressed his concern for Biblical leadership development as a director of a major camp and conference center, a founder of a discipleship school, a former president of CHA (an instructor safety certification program) and as a certified youth, marriage, and family counselor. He has received many prestigious national awards for his influence in leadership such as the National Leadership Award from the National Republican Congressional Committee Business Advisory Council and the Moody Bible Institute-Most Influential People. Lew is the founder of Sermon on the Mount, a ministry which exists to inspire the character of generations, equipping them to lead with integrity through practical training and unique horse illustrations.
Biblical Leadership Training
Specializing in Custom Horse and Pet Portraiture, artist Jennifer Brandon delights in capturing the charm and personality of people and all kinds of animals. From beloved pets to working class farm animals to million-dollar racehorses. Oil on canvas is the medium, while artistic passion and an understanding of an animal's personality brings her portraits to life. Having grown up a farm girl, raising horses in Dalton, PA, Jennifer Brandon has an ingrained understanding of the nuances of horse and pet portraiture. Using a modern, stylistic approach, she brings a liveliness and energy to her pieces seldom seen in traditional oil portraits.
Jen graduated from Marywood University with a BFA in Illustration. She's illustrated a number of published children's books, and in 2007 she officially launched her painting, illustration and design company, Jaché Studio.
Now, Jen travels to horse shows for inspiration and to exhibit her paintings. Her work is on display around the country, including Saratoga, NY, Nashville, TN, and Clarks Summit, PA.
Jen's work has been sought after by prominent groups in the horse world to feature her paintings on various book covers (Trafalgar Square Books) and as the official artwork for The Equine Affaire for 2013. She's exhibited at the Hampton Classic Hunter Jumper Show in Bridgehampton, NY, and has been the featured artist in a number of local and national magazines and catalogs, including The Horsemen's Corral, Bit of Britain and Life: Beautiful.
Jennifer's foremost goal for her original and custom portraits is to present "a piece of a beautiful moment" ... something to cherish for years to come. She believes her love for painting and illustration are gifts given from the Lord, and will continue to enjoy these gifts and the joy of sharing them with others for as long as He would have her do so.
Stuart originally trained as an actor and has enjoyed a varied career including theatre; television, musicals, film, radio and voice-over. As a singer, song-writer, Stuart has also recorded albums of his own work. Stuart made his operatic debut in 2011 after studying with Julian Gavin and coaching with both Phillip Thomas and David Syrus. He has since steadily built a career as a dramatic bass-baritone. Stuart continues his studies with Phillip Thomas and Janice Chapman.
Stuart has been awarded scholarships from the Wagner Society; The Mastersingers – The Howard Goodall Scholarship; Grange Park Opera and he also became the first ever recipient of The Carole Rees Award for Advanced Musical Studies again from The Mastersingers. Stuart has performed in masterclasses with Sir John Tomlinson, Petra Lang, Dame Anne Evans and Dame Josephine Barstow.
Recent seasons include Kurwenal Tristan und Isolde (Revival); Biterolf Tannhäuser, Kurwenal Tristan und Isolde and HagenDer Ring des Nibelungen (Longborough Festival Opera); ScarpiaTosca; Pizzaro Fidelio (OperaHerts); Sweeney Todd Sweeney Todd (VivoD’Arte); Amfortas Parsifal (Elemental Opera) and his house debut covering Dr Schon/Jack the Ripper in Lulu for English National Opera.
Other operatic engagements include Hagen Götterdämmerung(Longborough Festival Opera); Baron Dauphol La traviatadirected by Dr. Jonathan Miller, Dutchman (cover) Der fliegende Holländer, Montano Otello and Sciarrone Tosca(Dorset Opera Festival); Nightwatchman Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg; Alberich Götterdämmerung (cover) for Saffron Opera Group; Hunding Die Walkure (Act 2) for Berwick Festival Opera; Marullo Rigoletto (Grange Park Opera); EscamilloCarmen (Impact Opera, New Vic Opera).
On the concert platform performances include Brahms Ein deutsches requiem, Handel Messiah, Mozart Requiem and Solemn Vespers, Rossini Petite messe solennelle, CharpentierMesse de Minuit, Monteverdi Beatus Vir and PergolassiMagnificat.
Engagements in the current season include recitals including the music of Brahms; Finzi; Schubert and Weill and Scarpiafor Oxford Opera.
Andrew Pudewa is the director of the Institute for Excellence in Writing and a father of seven. Traveling and speaking around the world, he addresses issues related to teaching, writing, thinking, spelling, and music with clarity, insight, practical experience, and humor. His seminars for parents, students, and teachers have helped transform many a reluctant writer and have equipped educators with powerful tools to dramatically improve students’ skills.
Although he is a graduate of the Talent Education Institute in Japan and holds a Certificate of Child Brain Development from the Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, his best endorsement is from a young Alaskan boy who called him “the funny man with the wonderful words.” He and his wonderful, heroic wife, Robin, have homeschooled their seven children and are now proud grandparents of eleven, making their home in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Allen Hurley has been involved in audio production and sound design since 1984 when he began his career in radio broadcasting. He is the owner/sound designer and video motion designer of The Audio Suite.
Allen has produced award-winning commercials, radio specials, promos, audio books, as well as audio dramas like Focus on the Family's Adventures in Odyssey and Lamplighter Theatre that have sold and broadcast internationally. More recently he has been editing video and designing Motion Graphics for TV commercials, large plasma displays, stage backdrops, as well as creative church promotion.
Sound Design, Filmmaking
This versatile artist was born in Englewood, Florida, in 1954 in a small rural coastal town. He was born the son of a fisherman, which he writes “gave me a love for nature, along with my mother who delighted in the seashore.” Johns attended Trinity College of Florida, where he earned a BA in biblical studies and a Master of Fine Art degree from Academy of Art University in San Francisco, CA in 2014. He lives in Graceville Florida with his wife Linda where the couple own and operate the Art Design Center. He is currently working to help establish the visual arts at the Baptist College of Florida where he is currently serving a professor on staff.
It was Leonardo da Vinci who said, “A laborer works with his hands, a craftsman works with his hands and his head, but an artist works with his hands, his head and his heart.” According to Johns, “In a world of shrinking time and space, the visual arts open up new vistas of discovery and fuel imagination toward resplendent beauty. Natural beauty may or may not be perceived by the eye, but to respond to it through painting is seeing it with the heart and soul. This expansive quality of joy must be expressed; there is something transcendent about it that cannot be contained, it must spill over. These echoes of praise we call paintings. They are reflective of a greater reality than our own; as artists we live not in a disconnect but a present reality of such discovery, we often call inspiration. It is what I have most enjoyed about being an artist.”
Oils are the perfect medium and the most versatile for capturing Florida’s natural beauty on canvas. From thin wash-like watercolor applications to the opaque quality, oils have the ability to offer a wide range of application. The final toning using transparent mediums, brings luminosity as light penetrates these thin glazes and illuminates the painting. These paintings are painted with a formal and traditional approach.
Rich Swingle is an award-winning actor who has performed on five continents, 29 nations and in hundreds of venues with his one-man plays and workshops. The dynamic nature of his work can fill as little as ten minutes in a larger presentation or as much as a full week of workshops. He has performed at churches, colleges, retreats, camps, prisons, a military base, theatres from Off-Broadway to The Kennedy Center, film, radio, and CD-ROM. For the Beginners Bible video series, distributed by Sony Wonder, he did 20 roles including Jesus, Adam, and the Serpent. He has performed voice-overs and on-screen roles in several commercials and over 20 film projects. He has performed and/or taught workshops in nearly 50 colleges or universities, including Namseoul University, Korea, Memphis University, and he co-leads a workshop annually at Princeton University. Rich also spoke at the Ivy League Congress on Faith and Action, hosted by the Harvard University chapter of Christian Union.
The New York Times calls him "a seemingly limitless well of feeling." Sanborn is best known by hundreds of thousands of people in the theater world for his portrayals of legendary heroes like Ben-Hur (Judah Ben-Hur), Aeneas (Dido and Aeneas), Jesus (The Miracle), and King David (King David) off Broadway. As a comedian, he has also been specifically noted by critics from Backstage, The New York Times and others for his spot-on celebrity impersonations.