Dylan Tashjian (Co-founder, Artistic Director)
Dylan is a Junior at New York University where he studies Drama and Directing at Tisch School of the Arts and Entertainment Business at Stern School of Business. He grew up in Hickory and is a 2015 IB diploma graduate from Hickory High and active member in the Hickory arts scene. Among being elected President of the Choral Department, Dylan also played an active role in bringing the theater program back to Hickory High with Molly Bass and Donna Wiles. He appeared as Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz and Linus in You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown at Hickory along with being the captain and choreographer of the school’s Show Choir. Dylan has also appeared as Hanna the Dominatrix in Hickory Community Theater’s La Cage Aux Folles. For his Eagle Scout Project, he designed a multi-purpose room at Hickory for athletes and artists to work on their individual crafts.
In New York, Dylan has performed in Assassins as John Hinckley, Failure: A Love Story as John N., among others including the creation of his own role in Autobiography of Red adapted from the Ann Carson novel in verse. This Fall, he will be a part of a new musical workshop with the Playwrights Horizons Theater School. Dylan has produced Punk Rock in New York City and plans to produce an immersive show in the Fall of ‘17.
As Artistic Director, Dylan oversees the creative programing for the Hickory Playground. He is in charge of outreach as well as recruitment and execution of the annual Hickory Playground play festival.
Find him on Instagram.
Robert Fuller (Co-Founder, Multimedia Director)
Robert works as a production assistant for an independent production company called Plan A Films, located in Asheville, North Carolina. He was born and raised in Hickory and has a background in theatre, having been involved in several local productions, including The Hobbit (Gollum), The Princess Bride (Inigo Montoya), Into the Woods (the Wolf), and Fiddler on the Roof (Tevye). His short films, including Acceptance, can be found on his YouTube Channel.
As Multimedia Director, Robert is acts as a general manager and oversees photo and video documentation of events.
Jordan Makant (Co-Founder, Technical Director)
Jordan has lived in Hickory since 2008 and is a senior at Lenoir-Rhyne University. He is an assistant editor at Wild Goose Poetry Review, and his poetry has been published in Rat’s Ass Review, Main Street Rag, The Ekphrastic Review, and Kakalak 2017 (forthcoming). His first book, Impossible Angles, will be published in September 2017. Jordan is also an actor, and his acting credits include The Hobbit (Bilbo Baggins), Pablo Picasso at the Lapin Agile (Elvis), The Princess Bride (Wesley), The Good Doctor (Ivan, Young Anton), From This Day Forward (Duke Victor, Fred), and Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) (Adam).
As Technical Director, Jordan handles the budget, databases, website maintenance, poster and program design, and supervision of the different crews (actors, playwrights, and technicians). He is the primary liaison between the production and artistic aspects of Hickory Playground events.
Megan Clark (Production Manager)
Megan was homeschooled in the foothills of North Carolina, where she discovered a deep passion for the theatre arts. She has acted, directed, and stage managed in various productions over the past few years. Acting credits include Bang Bang You’re Dead (Emily), You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Lucy), and Seussical (Mrs. Mayor). Directing credits include It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown; Smallest And Grandest of Adventures; Eloise at the Plaza; and Jack Tales. Stage managing credits include Mary Poppins; The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; Once Upon a Mattress; A Christmas Carol; A Midsummer Nights Roller Disco; Liberty Mountain – The Revolutionary Drama; and the second annual Hickory Playground.
As Production Manager, Megan acts as a direct assistant to the Technical Director and helps to ensure that all Playground events go as smoothly as possible. When she isn’t working on a theatre-related project, Megan can be found enjoying life with her family, friends, and her dog, Oakley.
Find her on Instagram here.
Destre Tashjian (Brand Ambassador)
Destre was born and raised in Hickory and regularly volunteers in the community. She is an International Baccalaureate Diploma candidate at Hickory High School where she is motivated both academically and artistically. Her involvement in theatre spans over more than 10 years and she is intending to continue her training and peruse a BFA in Theatre in college. She has participated in several New York original cast readings and workshops, in addition to her regional and local theatre credits: Hairspray (Tracy), Into the Woods (Witch), 25th Annual…(Logainne), Once Upon a Mattress (Wizard, Stand-in), Legally Blonde (Delta-Nu/Stenographer), Wizard of Oz (Swing, Ensemble), and more.
As Brand Abassador, Destre advises Hickory Playground’s media presence, provides news and updates to followers, and helps as a volunteer on the day of the event!
Find her on Instagram here.