Cape Henlopen High School Theatre Academy
Martha Pfeiffer began her career teaching History in the Wicomico County School District. With a dual M.A. in both Colonial American and Ancient History, she taught in the middle school setting for over eighteen years. She transferred to Cape Henlopen over ten years ago, where, in addition to teaching history, Mrs. Pfeiffer ran an after school theatre program to encourage a passion for the theatre arts. Having been involved in Theatre since the age of seven, she fully appreciated the impact of performance in shaping self- confidence. She continued her studies at Salisbury University, where she received a dual BA in Theatre, and Communication and Education. She has accrued an impressive list of credits in Theatre, Music and Dance, either through acting, directing or choreographing over forty-two production. Mrs. Pfeiffer’s most memorable roles include Gertrude in Hamlet – directed by Charles Duff from Shakespeare’s Globe in London, Varya in The Cherry Orchard- directed by the late Yury Belov ( from University of North Carolina School of the Arts) Sally Bowles in Cabaret, and originating the role of Lady Booby in the world premier of Joseph Andrews. Her Theatre and Dance training began in the late 1970’s with Bill Comer, in Dover, Delaware where she also studied jazz dancing with Broadway choreographer, Bob Fosse. After furthering her training at Salisbury University, in which she played many challenging roles, she extended her training with both England’s Royal Shakespeare Company and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Martha was also the theatre instructor for the Wicomico County Summer Intensive Program, and later the Maryland Summer Center for the Arts (an intensive 3 week residential program held at Salisbury University). Pfeiffer also combined her areas of expertise in Theatre and History by serving as historian for the SU production of The Crucible, and serving as a historical advisor for the Roundabout Theatre’s production of 1776 on Broadway.
Martha Pfeiffer created and developed the Cape Henlopen High School Theatre Academy in the fall of 2010 and has been the Artistic Director for the past six years. Beginning with an enrollment of 35 students, the program now boasts over 130 students and continues to grow. Much of the success of the Cape Henlopen Theatre career pathway is due to its rigorous training program based on a college-prep curriculum. These courses include Theatre Fundamentals, Movement, Voice and Dance, Children’s Theatre, Directing, Acting Shakespeare and Theatre History. Pfeiffer’s students have gone on to university training; several winning the Biron Scholarship in Theatre at Salisbury University; while others have pursued Theatre studies at Columbia College, George Washington University, The Julliard School, the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Pace University, and the New York Film Academy. One in particular, excited by the discovery of acting Shakespeare, has gone on to post graduate studies the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London.Under Pfeiffer’s direction, the Cape Henlopen High School Theatre Academy has won several state-wide dramatic competitions as well as winning the English Speaking Union Shakespeare competition two times - representing the state of Delaware. This experience enabled her students to compete nationally on a Broadway stage, while gaining further experience and confidence in their craft. In addition to Theatre Studies, Mrs. Pfeiffer’s students are also taught lessons in Philanthropy and Humanitarianism. Pfeiffer and her students have recently been recognized by the Broadway community for their industry and commitment in raising over $30,000.00 for Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS. Mrs. Pfeiffer has been nominated for the Excellence in Theatre Education Tony Award this spring, a top honor for theatre instructors across the country.
Technical Theatre Director
Kevin is a graduate of Salisbury University with a B.A. in Communication Arts- Media Production. While at SU, Kevin worked on several theatrical productions, doing everything from sound, lights, props and set construction/design. Kevin has been involved with theatre from a young age, and started running sound at the age of 8. He has worked on many productions throughout elementary, middle, and high school, and continued in technical theatre throughout college. Kevin has worked as a sound engineer, lighting engineer/designer, set designer and scenic carpenter for various productions, ranging from high school and community theatre, to college and professional organizations such as the Miss Delaware organization. As well as being involved in theatre, Kevin is also a musician, and performs shows in and out of the state, and has also accompanied several shows here at Cape.
Kevin became the Technical Theatre Director at Cape in 2015, and is now going into his second year at the school. Along with running lights and sound, and designing and building sets for all of the Theatre Academy productions, he also works closely with students and teaches them all of the different aspects of technical theatre, and trains them to run tech for the various shows that the Theatre Academy does throughout the year. Along with this, Kevin also runs events for outside groups that rent out the theatre, including the Rehoboth Jazz Festival, the Rehoboth Film Festival, the Miss Delaware Pageant, and many others. Students also have the opportunity to work on these events alongside Kevin. This provides them a great opportunity to meet professional artists/technicians, and build their resumes for after graduation and college applications.