CAPA Instructors & Staff
Singing Instructor, Camp Assistant Director & Choreographer
Payton has been trained by the best our area has to offer. Now her training continues at Brigham Young University, a nationally recognized musical theatre program. She’s had the fortune to be directed by tony award winner, Casey Hushion and share the stage with legends, David Ira Wood III and Andrea McArdle. Payton is represented by Terri Dollar and brings an amazing ability to relate to youth as well as grow talent in them. A gifted teacher, her visionary talent to stage musicals makes us fortunate to have her join us each summer as our choreographer and assistant director for CAPA Summer Stock Musical Theatre Camp.
Artistic Director, Principal Director of Productions, and Acting Instructor
Melanie Prince has been teaching Acting and Musical Theatre for more than two decades. She earned her BA in theatre with emphasis in Acting and Musical Theatre from California State University Sacramento. Melanie led a Northern CA charter high school theatre program for three years and has also owned and operated a children's performing arts school in Nashville TN. She also spent three amazing years working with Estes Tarver at Moonlight Stage Company in Raleigh, but realizing the need for strong acting and arts programs in the Southwest Wake Region of North Carolina, Melanie founded Carolina Academy of Performing Arts, “ CAPA” in 2017. She is the Artistic Director, principal director of productions, and primary acting instructor of CAPA. CAPA boasts many students who are the top talent in their schools with some competing in Triangle Rising Stars and gone on to the Jimmy Awards in NYC.
Melanie has successfully placed students in musical theatre, and BFA acting collegiate programs as well as guided them to professional representation. Melanie is represented by Terri Dollar of KU Talent, a film actress and film acting coach. Melanie, her children, and students can be seen on the small and large screens. She has spent countless hours on commercial, television and major motion picture sets. Among her favorite director's credits are Newsies, Oliver and Les Miserables. Growing talent in others and helping her students to raise their ceiling and realize their dreams, is as rewarding to her as performing herself for they, “are such stuff as dreams are made on” (Shakespeare).
Erik discovered his love of musical theater as a teenager, seeing Les Miserables in Europe with his dad. He received his BFA in Music Dance Theater from Brigham Young University and has performed in several productions including the national tour of South Pacific, based on the Lincoln Center Production; Les Miserables; Company; and 110 in the Shade, starring Audra McDonald. He has taught voice, acting, and musical theatre classes to talented high school performing arts students at Pioneer High School for the Performing Arts and at On Broadway Academy (both in Utah). He became the Director of COPA Theater Company, directing fully staged musicals, and simultaneously served as the Classes Director for On Broadway Academy and as a private voice instructor. Erik is an avid sports fan and roller coaster enthusiast, among many other things. He currently participates in community theater for the love of it.
Instructor: CAPA Company, Boys MDT, College Audition Prep Workshop
Angie has been acting since she was a child, eventually earning degrees in Theatre Arts and Sociology. She is represented by Terri Dollar with KU Talent Agency in Raleigh. Angie appreciates the intricacies of acting for film and acting for theatre and is passionate about each. Most recent acting credits include commercials for Duke Energy, Comporium, Hawk Law, Lexington Medical Center and multiple film projects for the North Carolina Museum of History, including their latest Quiltspeak Exhibit. She is most well-known for her role in You Never Know How Much Good You Do, a short film which has gone viral and international. Angie recently wrote and directed the documentary “Northeastern North Carolina’s Underground Railroad,” as commissioned by the Museum of the Albemarle. Angie has been writing and directing projects between acting gigs for the past 15 years, including 2017’s sold-out play “Finding Patience – The Story of Holly Springs,” which she will be directing again in 2020. Last year she gave a TEDx talk at Duke University about the power of Local History Theatre and Film. Angie believes that film and theatre can be used for good – to uplift, enlighten and inspire.
Instructor: Film Actors Workshop
Office Manager, Instructor
Michelle began singing along with Olivia Newton John when she was little (she even had the same ONJ haircut for 3 years) to singing in her high school chorus, mixed show choir and in an a capella choir. Michelle played the violin all though elementary, middle & high school and learned to play the cello and viola when needed. She participated for three years in the dance team, performed as one of the brides in "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers", and sang during her HS graduation. Michelle attended San Jose City College in California and while there took art classes that have inspired her ever since. She has also sang at weddings and performed with a band or two through the years. Michelle uses improv's" Yes, and..?" rule, and it has led her to prop making, to set design & construction and to administration with CAPA where her daughters perform. Michelle believes "CAPA is Saving the Arts!"
Kathleen Black, Ballet Dance Pro
Alexa Robertson, Dance Instructor
Tate Mahar, Improv Instructor
Hallie Morgan, Improv Instructor
Kathleen Black trained at Infinity Ballet and The Raleigh School of Ballet. During summers, she trained at American Ballet Theatre, Harid Conservatory, and on scholarship at both Boston Ballet and School of American Ballet. While attending SAB in 2012, Ms. Black was selected to perform in Peter Walker’s workshop piece created for the New York Choreographic Institute. In the spring of 2012, Ms. Black was invited to become a trainee with Carolina Ballet and perform in Robert Weiss’ world premiere of Beethoven: Symphony No. 9. She was promoted to apprentice in 2014 and full company member in 2015. Black has performed in the annual production of Theatre in the Park’s A Christmas Carol, dancing the featured ballet role. Ms. Black was a competitive Scottish Highland dancer, having won both the National and North American Championships.
Tate Mahar and team teacher Hallie Morgan’s Improv classes are among CAPA’s most popular workshops.
Both Hallie and Tate have been taught in part by award winning veteran improvisor and legendary teacher, Jeris Donovan. They have been tooling their craft with CAPA since 2017.
Alexa Blair Robertson is a professional dancer and aspiring surgeon. She currently attends Duke where she is a Dancing Devil and part of their Ballroom team. She is an actress and Model. She can be seen in Hallmark's “One Summer” with CAPA’s own, Bryant Prince, released fall of 2021.
At age 4, Robertson was diagnosed with a stage 4 Wilms Tumor in which she endured multiple surgeries, chemotherapy, and radiation to defeat. Following her battle with cancer, she moved to Raleigh where she began training with CC & Company Dance Complex under the direction of Christy Curtis. Robertson danced competitively with “The Core” for eleven years. Now cancer free, Robertson has spent a decade working with and learning from the best choreographers. She dances professionally at Play in LA and Excel Studios in Atlanta.