About – Staff
Christine Verdun – Owner of Creative Endeavors
Christine is an accomplished musician, model and actress with over 20 years of experience in performance and 12 years in teaching. She graduated from Rutgers College with high honors; her studies included educational psychology and communication. She has also studied acting with The School of Film and Television in New York City and voice and piano with teachers from Julliard.
Christine has recently taught several local seminars, including YPO, Mind-Body Bootcamp, Benardsville Library and The Art of Dance.
Other speaking arrangements have included AFLAC, Watersign Creative & Recording, Long Valley Music Fest, Models of the South Scholarship, Fashion Rock Live on NBC, Johnny Zero on Fox, Rutgers College Scholar Program, Campus Fellowships, National Honor Society, and Future Business Leaders of America. She has also been seen as a fashion model for the last 15 years in companies such as The Gap, Lands End, Talbots, J Crew, Jordache, and Levis. She was a semi-finalist in an international fitness and swim wear competition last year and also help promote companies such as Oil of Olay, BMW, Mercedes Benz, and Porche. In addition she has produced and directed the following plays: Grease, Newsies, Highschool Musical 1&2, Annie, Wizard of Oz, Cinderella, Charlotte’s Webb, Hanna Montanna, Little Mermaid.
She is a recording artist who specializes in songwriting and singing. Soon you will be able to hear her on the radio and on television. Christine is currently working on a children’s television show on Channel 21. Students from Creative Endeavors have recently been featured. Her current CD can be found on her website www.christineverdun.com
Frank Amantea has been with Creative Endeavors for over 4 years. He has been an integral staff member and director. He works closely with students, parents, and the owner of the school. Frank’s talents in music composition, recording, drama, writing, guitar, and piano have not gone without notice in the community. As a director he has re-written over 15 shows including;.Grease For Kids, High School Musical 1 and 2, Annie, Hairspray, Charlotte’s Web, Camp Rock and soon High School Musical 3 as well as other original pieces of work. As a teacher he has assisted in designing programs for children with special needs in several schools including the Calis School. As a producer and engineer, he has assisted the school in helping students record music and utilize technology in their studies. Frank has also been continuing his education in professional music and acting while teaching.
Rachel Dunwoody has performed in community theatre productions throughout Morris County and New York City. She has over 10 years of private vocal and piano instruction, and has taught Choral and Orchestral Music, as well as Theatre, at the middle and high school levels. She received her B.A. in Theatre Arts: Directing and Acting, from Dordt College in Sioux Center, IA, and holds a M.A. in Music and Music Education from Teachers College Columbia University. Favorite past roles include Clytemnestra (Agamemnon, Electra), Laurey (Oklahoma!), Ann Deever (All My Sons), Lorraine Taylor (The Receptionist), and Cecile Leroux (Is He Dead?).
Bryan Ramirez entered the world of performing arts at the age of seven, playing the piano at a recital for Mr. Paz’s music school in Kearny, New Jersey. He later followed his uncle’s footsteps to the stage and became familiar with musicals like “Godspell” and “Jesus Christ Superstar”. At the age of nine, he then enrolled in The Children’s Theatre of Livingston continuing to discover his potential in acting in a production named “Forget Me Not”. Through years in high school, Ramirez worked with his youth community program to further develop a Stations of the Cross performance. Toni Bilotti Cecere, whom Ramirez met at his parish of St. Raphael’s shaped his public speech and diction gracefully taking him under her wing endowing him with valuable skills he would need for the rest of his career. Bryan then attended Fordham University where he studied psychology and performing arts. He vigorously studied the classical guitar and took classes to learn more about the fundamentals of acting and performance. After returning to New Jersey, he was given the opportunity to work with director Angelo Uccello in the production “Say Yes to Life!” A community program geared towards the youth in an anti-drug and alcohol campaign. Given the opportunity to further use his talents in Trinity Theatrical Productions, Ramirez enthusiastically accepted the co-producer position focusing on creating original productions further developing community values. Ramirez went on to be nominated by NJACT in 2008 for Outstanding Original Production/Musical. Soon after separating from Trinity Theatrical he would go on to contribute his talents with Creative Endeavors. Bryan continues working with children and fostering creative growth while continuing to elaborate on his artistic abilities. He hopes to pass on the many valuable lessons he has learned and share many good memories with others.
Sarah Wertheimer Lopez graduated from Hofstra University in 1999 with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. She began her career teaching Special Education dance classes as a high school volunteer at the Center for Modern Dance Education in Hackensack, NJ. After college she came back as a staff member of CMDE and became co-director of a dance company of disabled and able bodied dancers. Sarah has extensive experience as a para-professional working with children of all different abilities.