May 3, 2024

We’re thrilled to introduce the ten talented students beginning their Theatre UCF journey with us this Fall as part of the Master of Fine Arts in Acting. This NAST-accredited program fosters both practical and theoretical excellence, preparing artists for the demanding world of professional acting.

Over three years, students immerse themselves in intensive training, with the final year spent as resident company members at Orlando Shakes. Here, they perform, teach, and contribute to the theater’s operations, honing their craft while embodying role models for future undergraduates. We’re excited to see their growth and impact on the stage and Central Florida community while at UCF!

Alessandra Almanza is based in lovely Brownsville, Texas and got her BA in Theatre Education University of Texas – RGV! Some of her show credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena), A Chorus Line (Laura), and As You Like It (Rosalind) at the Camille Playhouse in Brownsville, TX! Some of her other work has been seen with University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley in She Stoops to Conquer (Kate Hardcastle) and Coriolanus (Sicinius)! She is currently working as a theatre director/teacher at Coakley Middle School in Harlingen, TX and has mounted productions like Shrek Jr., The Lion King Jr., and These Shining Lives. She is so excited to see what the future has to offer!


Laura Banguero is a Cali-Colombia native turned Miamian. She discovered her passion for theatre at a young age and has been dedicated to it ever since. With an A.A. in Drama Education from Miami Dade College and a BFA in Theatre Performance from FIU, she thrives on collaboration and creative experimentation. She’s passionate about art history, audience interaction, and chef Gordon Ramsay.


Jacob Berggren, born and raised in Madison, WI is grateful to be joining the UCF MFA Acting class of 2027. Jacob is a Theatre and Dance graduate from the University of Northwestern – St. Paul and has enjoyed performing with regional theatres across the Midwest in addition to being a dancer and singer with Carnival Cruise lines. Jacob has been a Ballroom dance instructor in downtown NYC as well as trained with Broadway Dance Center and the Actor’s Studio Drama School. In addition to working on developmental theatre, Jacob enjoys writing, directing, and choreography. He looks forward to learning from and collaborating alongside his professors and peers over the course of the program and is excited to work together to create meaningful and challenging art.


Marty Gnidula (he/him) is an actor from Orange, CT. He is so grateful for this next chapter, and he’s so excited to be a Knight! Marty attended the University of Vermont, where he studied Theatre and English-Pre Law. Some of his favorite stage credits include John Hemminges in Imogen Says Nothing (UVM), Karrer in Walking, a New Operetta (UVM), Dr. Parker in Batboy the Musical (UVM), and Scuttle in The Little Mermaid (Westport Country Playhouse). He wants to thank his friends, family, and all of the amazing people who’ve helped support him.


Ger Grandfield joins us from Richmond, VA, where he is graduating this May with a BFA in Theatre/Performance from Virginia Commonwealth University. Recent University credits include his self-written solo show, Failing Fabulously, Nils/Torkel in Let The Right One In, Marcellus/Player/Osric in Hamlet, and Queensberry in Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde. Other recent credits are Ely/Montjoy in Henry V and Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night with The Prague Shakespeare Company in the Czech Republic. Ger grew up to Irish immigrant parents in Massachusetts where he began his acting journey. He then took a detour living in Ireland for nearly two decades where he worked as a flight attendant traveling the world for the Irish national airline, Aer Lingus, amongst other jobs in the hospitality industry. Now back pursuing his first love, acting, Ger is delighted to be joining the MFA in Acting cohort at UCF, and eager to collaborate and create meaningful art together.


Faith Klick is so excited to begin her journey with UCF! This has been her dream since the age of 16 and she couldn’t imagine doing it with better people. Faith is originally from Wild Rose, Wisconsin and graduated with her BA in Musical Theatre and English Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay in 2020. Since then, she has worked a myriad of jobs all over the country with St. Croix Falls Festival Theatre, MSU Summer Theatre, and Missoula Children’s Theatre. As of late, she was living in Milwaukee Wisconsin, teaching with the Milwaukee Repertory Theatre and acting with companies like Voices Found Repertory and Sunset Playhouse. She can’t wait to begin this life changing journey in her new home! Faith would like to thank her family and friends for all their love and support.


Rebecca Elizabeth Low is an actress from Twin Falls, Idaho. Her love for the stage began at a young age and she had the privilege of cultivating her skills in the local theatre community. Graduating with an Associate’s Degree in Theatre from the College of Southern Idaho, then transferring to Idaho State University to complete her Bachelor’s of Arts in Theatre and Minor in Dance. Some of Rebecca’s favorite roles include: Ocean Rosenberg in Ride The Cyclone, Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family The Musical, and Dot in Sunday in The Park With George. She has had the opportunity to originate the role of Donna in What The Word Father Means, as well as taking part in The Ephemerates Theatre Collective’s debut performance. Rebecca is consistently inspired by strong female artists and is happy to say her family and friends are her biggest supporters.


David Martinez graduated from Sul Ross State University, in Alpine, Texas, in 2018. He is currently working on a book of poetry, a short script, and his second full-length script. He has been in multiple musicals and plays including – Frank Butler (Annie Get Your Gun), Anthony Hope (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street), Jamie Wellerstein (The Last 5 Years), Don Quixote/Don Miguel de Cervantes (Man of La Mancha), Alan Raleigh (God of Carnage), Lord Capulet (Romeo and Juliet), Lord Macduff (Macbeth), and Stanley Kowalski (A Streetcar Named Desire). He has also helped Franklin High School in El Paso, Texas, with 3 productions during the last 5 years. If he could have 3 famous people over for dinner, he would choose: Socrates, Martin Luther King Jr. and William Shakespeare (assuming he was a single real person).


Lincoln Stone hails from northern Utah by way of Southern Utah University, where he performed multiple roles including Stephano in The Tempest, Eilif in Mother Courage, and the titular Thane in Macbeth. He has worked with the late Clarence Gilyard of Top Gun and Die Hard; Peter Sham, author of Lend Me a Tenor: The Musical; and Richard Bugg of Walker, Texas Ranger. He has played roles ranging from Juan Perón in Evita to Jack Worthing in The Importance of Being Earnest to The Baker in Sondheim’s Into the Woods. Lincoln graduated summa cum laude from SUU, earning a BFA in Classical Acting with minors in Shakespeare Studies and Management. In his free time he enjoys reading, watching movies, and participating in sports as both a player and licensed referee. He is thrilled and honored to attend UCF.