The mission of Thin Ice Ensemble Theater is to provide students of all abilities with a comprehensive, collaborative, and confidence-building theatrical experience through immersion in great plays, while providing the community with affordable, high-quality theater.
Thin Ice Ensemble Theater was established in 2000.
Comment on Molière: One Act Comedies, Spring 2012:
“I had the opportunity of viewing the Thin Ice Theater production. The performance and production is as good as many professional troupes I have seen! A pure pleasure!!!! As a theater goer, this was a joy to watch and witness the quality of the performers, the synchronicity and the production. Talent on every level!”
Dr. Miriam Dani, DDS, Kenilworth IL
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Eileen Hand, Artistic Director
After receiving a degree in music performance from the University of Illinois, Eileen went on to work professionally in and around the Chicago area. Theaters include Apple Tree Theater, Light Opera Works, and Different Drummer Music Theater. She went on to found Thin Ice Theater in 1999. She has been directing and working with young people since then. She recently worked with Summer on Broadway at the Skokie Park District.
Cheryl Yenter, Company Manager
Cheryl Yenter has been involved in theater and music for many years. A music education graduate from the College of St. Teresa, she has taught vocal music and produced concerts and performances by young people of all ages. She has sung in and managed various choral groups. She has assisted the TIET costume designers. and because of that experience, has cultivated an interest in the process of costuming shows. For Cheryl, watching young people bring their characters to life on stage continues to bring great satisfaction.
Ruth Haas, Treasurer/Business Manager/Set Design/Coproducer
Ruth has always had a love of theater from a very young age. She enjoys the production experience and seeing a play come to life. She has worked with props and co-producing Thin Ice Ensemble Theater productions since 2008. She enjoys teaching Dr. Seuss classics helping kids create props and sets. Ruth loves her job!
Tyler Skafgaard, Instructor & Media
Tyler Skafgaard is a recent graduate of North Park University, holding a BA in Conflict Transformation with a focus in Theatre. Through studying and working with Theatre of Witness and Theatre of the Oppressed, he has experienced the importance of using theatre as a way to empathizes the real accounts of individual people. Tyler is excited to teach acting as a learning ground and place of exploration to build awareness of the world around us. Since having his first directing experience in 2015 he has had the pleasure of directing numerous shows, and developed a passion for directing and teaching theatre. Through Tyler’s internship with Thin Ice this past spring his passion for teaching children grew while he learned and found a purpose in his major. He is looking forward to continuing work with Thin Ice, and helping children explore who they are and the world around them through acting.
Jennifer has a PhD in English from eh University of Chicago and studied playwriting with Wendy McLeod at Kenyon College. The homeschooling curriculum she designed with her daughter Ada Grey involved seeing and writing about over 500 shows. She loves working with kids and helping them to present their observations and express their ideas to others. She loves the collaborative nature of theater and believes in exploring all its aspects, so she is excited to introduce Thin Ice kids to the craft of playwriting.
Thin Ice Ensemble Theater Board Members
Eileen Hand, Artistic Director
Jennifer Sampson, President
Joseph Clary, Vice President
Ruth Haas, Treasurer