About Metro

Staff

With a collective 85-plus years of experience in theater for young audiences among them, our staff brings a remarkable depth of passion and artistry to every aspect of our work.

Julia Flood
Artistic Director
julia at metroplays dot org

Julia Flood has more than 30 years of experience in the professional theatre as producer, director, playwright, actor and teacher. Most recently, Julia served as Producing Artistic Director of Eckerd Theater Company (ETC), a professional theater for young audiences based at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, FL. In her 16 years at ETC, she commissioned, developed and produced many new works for young audiences including VOTE? by Eric Coble, and BATTLEDRUM by Doug Cooney with music by Lee Ahlin. A graduate of Northwestern University, Julia did post-graduate study with famed teachers Robert Lewis and Alvina Krause before spending 7 years as a resident member of the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble in Pennsylvania. A native of New England, she traveled throughout the US as a free-lance theater artist before settling in Florida in 1996. Julia is the author of more than a dozen produced plays for youth and family audiences, including THE SNOW QUEEN, music by Lee Ahlin (Eldridge Press 2000) and THE GREAT ALPHABET ADVENTURE (Anchorage Press Plays 2010). Julia is a member of Actors’ Equity Association and Dramatists Guild and serves on the Executive Committee of the Board of TYA-USA, the US chapter of the International Association of Theater for Children and Young People (ASSITEJ).

To learn more about Julia, click here.

Matthew Neufeld
Managing Director
matt at metroplays dot org

Matt joined the Company in 2009 with an eclectic background as an arts manager, administrator, consultant, teaching artist, director, and actor.  A St. Louis native, Matt was first drawn to theater after seeing Metro Theater Company’s production of Beowulf.  Prior to coming to the Company, Matt served as the assistant to the managing director at Hartford Stage (CT), where he worked closely with the board of directors, helped coordinate a capital campaign, organized its new work festival, and developed an improvisational training program.  Matt is a graduate of the Tisch School of the Arts in New York University, and a graduate of the Field’s Artist-Manager Partnerships Program.

Karen Weberman
Education Director
karen at metroplays dot org

Karen joined Metro Theater Company in 2011. She has over 10 years of experience in arts education and professional theatre. Karen is honored to serve the mission of MTC by collaborating with young people, educators and community members throughout the St. Louis region. Her creative and research interests focus on arts integration, theatre for social change, applied theatre with marginalized populations, and professional development for teaching artists and pre-service and in-service teachers. She holds an MFA in Theatre for Young Audiences from the University of Central Florida and a BA in Theatre Arts from Michigan State University.

Jessie Youngblood
Director of Development
jessie at metroplays dot org

Jessie Youngblood

Jessie Youngblood came to Metro Theater Company from the Contemporary Art Museum (CAM), where she was the Assistant Director of Development.  Prior to CAM, Jessie worked at Jazz St. Louis in the role of Donor Services and Database Manager and at the St. Louis Symphony.

Jessie is passionate about local arts and culture and serves on the Board of Directors of the Left Bank Book Foundation, the Young Friends Steering Committee of Opera Theatre St. Louis, the Young Friends Board of Jazz St. Louis, the Government Relations Committee of the St. Louis Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and as VP of the St. Louis Region for the Missouri Citizens for the Arts Board of Directors.

Originally from Boise, Idaho, Jessie relocated to St. Louis in January of 2013 after completing her Master’s of Music in Violin Pedagogy at Boise State University. She has been playing the violin for twenty-two years and the trumpet for eighteen and has performed in a variety of ensembles; from a 180-person full orchestra and chorus in Eisenstadt, Austria, to a string quartet behind legendary jazz pianist Billy Childs.

John Wolbers
Producing Associate
john at metroplays dot org

John WolbersJohn joined Metro Theater Company in 2007 as an actor in Hana’s Suitcase, and became the full-time Resident Teaching Artist in 2012. Previously he served as the Youth Theatre Coordinator and Camp of the Arts Director for the St. Louis Jewish Community Center. Passionately dedicated to fostering equity, accessibility and support for the local arts community; John has worked for over a decade in the St. Louis region as a professional actor, director, producer, playwright and teaching artist. He is a St. Louis Theater Circle Award winner, and the author of The Playing Ground and Doctor Faustus: or the Modern Prometheus as well as several Shakespearean adaptations. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre from Southwestern University.

Erik Kuhn
Production Manager & Technical Director
erik at metroplays dot org

Erik Kuhn

Erik is a St. Louis-based actor, technician, and stage combatant. While working in the scene shop at Washington University in St Louis, he also began serving as a technical director for various student projects and developed an interest in working in technical theater, while continuing to study acting. After graduating with his degree in drama, he also began studying stage combat with the Society of American Fight Directors and Dueling Arts International, where he is currently certified as a DAI Associate Instructor.

As a freelance theater professional, he has served as a technical director, designer, carpenter, electrician, fight director, stage combat instructor, and actor on innumerable productions & workshops with educational institutions and professional companies across St. Louis.

Since first working with Metro in 2012, he continued to contract with the company in various capacities before joining the team full-time in 2017.

David Blake
Resident Designer
davidb at metroplays dot org

David Blake

David Blake’s past work with Metro includes lighting design for Unsorted. Other St. Louis scenic design credits include Stray Dog Theatre’s The Great American Trailer Park Musical (St. Louis Theatre Circle Nomination), Spring Awakening, Gypsy, and Little Shop of Horrors (St. Louis Theatre Circle Nomination), Winning Juliet (Shakespeare Festival St. Louis), Kosher Lutherans (HotCity), and Mary Shelley Monster Show (Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble). David is technical director for Clayton High School’s theater department.

Tracy Vail
Bookkeeper
tracy at metroplays dot org

Tracy Vail

Tracy joined Metro Theater Company in January, 2016. Prior to her return to St. Louis, Tracy lived in Cedar Rapids, Iowa where she was a Payroll Supervisor for Aegon USA and then a Product Manager in renewable energy for Alliant Energy. While in Cedar Rapids, she served on the board for Children’s Theater of Cedar Rapids. Tracy holds a Bachelor of Science in Business from Mount Mercy University.