Portrait of Nyla Watson

Photo Credit: Blue Photo NYC by L Morgan Lee

Nyla Watson

Singer, Actress & Educator

Nyla Watson is a second-year master's candidate in the program of Vocal Performance, studying music theater in the studio of Ana Zuim, and is also a candidate for the advanced certificate in vocal pedagogy. Notable performances include Mama Rose in Gypsy (NYU), Reno Sweeney in Anything Goes (NYU), PBS' Live at Lincoln Center: Showboat, Gigantic the Musical (off-Broadway), the touring companies of Wicked the musical and The Color Purple the musical, the regional premiere of Murder Ballad with Baldwin Wallace University.

Portrait of Rachel Dean

Photo Credit: Simbrock Creative

Rachel Dean (Pianist)

NYU alumna (TSOA, '17) Rachel Dean is a New York City-based composer, pianist, and music director. She is a pianist for Hamilton and Moulin Rouge on Broadway, and has collaborated alongside the likes of Heidi Blickenstaff, Brandon Uranowitz, Alysha Umphress, and Jennifer Jancuska. An ASCAP award recipient, Rachel’s work has been performed in New York, Tokyo, Miami, Ohio, Arizona, and New Jersey. Musicals in development include The Anxiety Project (with David Brush; cast recording coming in May 2020), On the Line (with Amy Burgess; upcoming production in May 2020 at Rubber City Theatre), Medusa (with Wes Braver), and The Ballad of Janis Matthews and the Dodo Scouts (with Giancarlo Rodaz). Rachel is a member of ASCAP and AFM Local 802.

Portrait of Vita

Vita E. (Percussionist)

Originally from Cleveland, OH, Vita E. has been surrounded by the power of art since childhood. From then on, they made a pledge that they would use the art that inspired them to influence thought, change, and freedom to exist without apology. This pledge would lead to her life as a percussionist, educator, poet, vocalist, and activist.

Vita’s passion as a Black Trans Femme artist has led to many milestones. As a musician, she’s finished a summer-long role as percussionist, mentor, and vocalist for the Creede Repertory Theatre, the full-stage debut of the hip-hop musical, Once Upon a Rhyme, and the most recent workshop performance of Medusa. Their response track to Janelle Monae, Hell Y'all Ain't Talmbout, was included in Source Magazines, "10 Songs Soundtracking the Black Lives Matter Movement." She recently made her Off-Broadway debut as Violet in The Secret Life of Bees, and will be touring with hip-hop artist CJ Run starting in the spring.

Portrait of Maya Thomas

Maya Thomas (Rapper)

Maya Thomas is a Brooklyn-based artist originally from the eastern shore of Maryland. A previous student at NYU Tisch’s New Studio on Broadway, in March 2020 Maya will join the Year Three cast of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” on Broadway. Her past theatre credits include Levora Verona in Disaster; Sister Sarah in Saint Sebastian; and Lana in Shadows.