The Players


Dr. Hugh K. Long (Director/Set Designer) is an Assistant Professor of English and Drama and the Artistic Director of the Athenian Players at Athens State University. Dr. Long most recently directed the Athenian Players’ inaugural production of Tennessee William’s The Glass Menagerie this past spring marking the beginning of the renewed Drama program at Athens State University. While Dr. Long teaches a variety of dramatic literature, theatre history, acting, and stage combat courses, his first love was performance. As an actor he has been featured in such films as The Fighter, Bewitched, Joe Dirt, and the TV series; Freaks & Geeks, Las Vegas, Arrested Development, and The Closer. He has also worked in Off-Broadway and Regional Theatres in Measure for Measure, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, West Side Story, The Music Man, and Asi Que Pasen Cinco Años.

Travis Sharp (Assistant Director/Stage Manager/Dramaturg) is a graduate of Athens State University with a BA in English and is a founding member of the Athenian Players. He is also the founding editor of athena’s web, Athens State’s arts and sciences journal. In the fall, he will enter the MFA in Creative Writing and Poetics at the University of Washington. He currently serves as the assistant director, stage manager, and dramaturg for the Athenian Players. He has previously served as stage manager, dramaturg, and music and sound manager for The Glass Menagerie.


Jensie Britt is a junior at Athens State University where she is majoring in English Education with a minor in Drama and is a founding member of the Athenian Players. She has worked on six plays at Northeast Alabama Community College and was in six plays at Scottsboro High School. She played Laura Wingfield in the Athenian Players’ inaugural production of The Glass Menagerie in April 2013 and has returned to the stage for Trojan Women.

Amberly Bryant is 15 years of age. She attends Clements High School and is pursuing her acting/modeling career with the help of classes held at Hollywood Huntsville with Bill Billions.

Ashley Busick cannot play the violin like Joshua Bell, nor is she a champion barrel rider like Bilbo Baggins, nor has she written the next Harry Potter series, but what did you want from a local eighth grader, really? For Trojan Women she’ll settle for pronouncing all of the Greek names correctly and remembering her lines.

Stephanie Cooper is a native Athenian, having graduated from Athens Bible School in 2009. She has been a part of community theater in Athens since 2007. She’s played Maxine in The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, Anna in The King and I, Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof, and was part of the premiere cast of Parade for Magic City Actors’ Theatre in Birmingham. Furthermore, she was selected to be in the top five for Red Mountain Theatre’s state-wide search for Tracy in Hairspray.

Kristi Coughlin is a strings instructor with The Huntsville Symphony and Athens State University’s Center for Lifelong Learning. She is the co-founder of Footlights Community Theater and specializes in musicals. Kristi has previously performed as Nancy in Oliver! and as the Fiddler in Fiddler on the Roof but prefers to be behind the scenes most of the time.

Chelsea Hollis is a student at Calhoun Community College. This is her second theatre production, after the musical The Little Match Girl.

Daniel Hutton is an English major at Athens State University with a minor in Drama.

Forrest Johnson is a native of Huntsville, Alabama. He is an English major at Athens State University and has aspirations to become a writer. He is a founding member of the Athenian Players.

Jeff Klevorn is a graduate from Athens State University with a degree in English, he is now seeking his teaching certificate. A twenty year veteran of the stage, some of his many credits include Moon over Buffalo, Night of January 16th, and a lead role in Reckless. Two of the Southern Playwrights Contest winners, The Bayou Merchant and The Blood of the Bear, were first runs of the shows. These shows were all done at Jacksonville State University. In the 90s, he performed in Bathroom Humor for Athens Dinner Theater as “The Big El”. He also played in Taming of the Shrew for Huntsville Little Theater.

Jacque Poe is a freshman at Clements High School and is a member of the Clements Marching Band.

Justin Poe is a second grader at Blue Springs Elementary School. This is his first theatrical production.

Laura Poe is a student at Athens State University where she is majoring in English and minoring in Drama. She is a founding member of the Athenian Players. If you have visited the Athens-Limestone Public Library you might recognize Laura – she is the tall paralibrarian behind the counter.

RJ Poe is a junior at Clements High School and is a member of the Clements Marching Band. This is his first theatrical performance.

Julian Rojas was born in New Jersey, partly raised in Alabama, and upon graduation served six years in the Marine Corps. On returning to Athens, he began his acting career with several regional musical productions such as Jesus Christ Superstar, Lil’ Abner, The Fantasticks, and Amahal and the Night Visitors. From there he was introduced to strait plays, performing in True West, The Lilies of the Field, The Treatment, A Few Good Men and selected scenes of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot. His film credits include Hunger, The Novice, The Sting of the Viper trilogy, Duncan’s Big Day and Room One. He also moved into the arena of writing and production while Co-Artistic Director of Test Tube Theater in New York, completing his first full length plays, The Long Road Home and Two Tablespoons of Crazy which were produced in Manhattan

Dorothy Weems in 2013 she performed as literary great Dorothy Parker in the New York premiere public reading of Steven Carl McCasland’s Little Wars (sponsored by Beautiful Soup Theatre); played the title role in Miss Wolfe’s Tangier Stories™, which is her original stage adaptation of her mother Ruth’s 1940s North Africa stories (UAH Coffeehouse Writers series); and appeared in two independent films. In 2012 she premiered the well-received Miss Wolfe’s Tangier Stories™ at the American Legation in Tangier, Morocco, for an international theatre and performance conference. Among her other stage credits are Comedy of Errors (Lady Abbess), Hamlet (Gertrude), Sarah in America (Sarah Bernhardt), Lion in Winter (Eleanor), Ten Little Indians (Emily Brent), Rain (Sadie), Mousetrap (Catherine Casewell), ‘Night Mother (Jesse), Coriolanus (Volumnia), and Agamemnon (Clytemnestra). She appeared on Alabama Public Television (Chekhov’s The Marriage Proposal) and on network television, as well as in local and regional commercials, videos, and independent films. She authored and performed in “Light of Christ” (Faith and Values network, Higher Dimensions Christmas Special), and wrote several plays, screenplays, and videos, including for Carman Time 2 series. Among other awards, Dorothy received Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress awards, and First Place awards in Solo and Acting Competitions. She received an M.A. in English and has taught at the university level. Dorothy will play the lead role of Kate in the UAHuntsville Theatre production of All My Sons November 13 – 23 at Wilson Hall Theatre.

Colin Whitworth is an Athens, Al native with a varied performance resume appearing in roles such as Seymour Krelborn (Little Shop of Horrors) and Tom Wingfield (The Glass Menagerie) with groups across North Alabama. He currently resides in Tuscaloosa, Al where he teaches public speaking and is currently working towards a Master’s Degree in Communication Studies at The University of Alabama.


Victoria Cochran (Lighting Designer) received a Bachelor’s of Science in Communications Arts with a concentration in Theatre from the University of North Alabama in May of 2013. While there she focused on design and technical theatre in the fields of scenery and lighting. Her 2012 set design for Six Characters in Search of an Author by Luigi Pirandello went to the Kennedy Center of American College Theatre Festival Region IV competition where it was critiqued by Tony award-winning designers Todd Rosenthal and Toni-Leslie James. Victoria is currently the technical director for Calhoun Community College’s Theatre Program and works with the iATSE Local 900 on occasion.

Dr. Kimberly Jack (Costume Designer) is officially joining the Athens State family as the new Assistant Professor of English on August 15, but agreed to step in early to design the costumes for Trojan Women. Her research investigates how clothing details function as communication in literature, and she’s delighted to see a hands-on application of her research. Dr. Jack has previously produced costumes for high school theater productions, Renaissance Faires, the Society for Creative Anachronism, Gencon, DragonCon, and a Renaissance wedding.

Susan Puryear (Hair/Makeup) was born and raised in north Alabama. She has worked in the beauty industry as a licensed managing cosmetologist for 20 years. For the last 7 years, she has been involved in local community theater projects with special emphasis on stage hair and makeup. Aside from Trojan Women, Susan is currently working on Night of the Living Dead. Past projects have included, among others, 101 Dalmatians and Laura.

Kelly Riley (Assistant Costume Designer) is a dual English and History major at Athens State University. Her dramatic pursuits include makeup, fashion, and sarcasm. Miss Riley’s costuming contributions include button sewing, ironing, and not bleeding (much) on the costumes.