About Gamut Theatre Group

Gamut Theatre Group is the combined home of Popcorn Hat Players Children's Theatre and Harrisburg Shakespeare Company. Our mission is to tell classic stories in new, exciting ways for the entertainment and enlightenment of children and adults alike.


We are devoted to making theatre accessible and engaging for all of Central PA and beyond. In addition to full seasonal offerings of both PHP and HSC, Gamut also produces professional-quality, donated performances through our Stage Door Series, whose motto is "Come as you are; Pay what you will." We also offer extensive and rigorous theatre education for youth throughout the year.


Gamut Theatre Group Ensemble

Here at Gamut we follow an actor/manager model similar to the way Shakespeare's company was structured. We have seven core company members, all of whom perform some acting or technical role along with an administrative role at the theatre. Six of our core company members are actors as well as educators in our Theatre School. 

Artistic Director: J. Clark Nicholson Clark@Gamuttheatre.org Before settling in the Harrisburg area, Clark performed with several theatre companies in the southeast U.S., including The Warehouse Theatre, The Rolling Rep Theatre, Southeastern Theatrical Productions and also the longest running production in North America, The Lost Colony Outdoor Drama.

Artistic Director: J. Clark Nicholson
Clark@Gamuttheatre.org

Before settling in the Harrisburg area, Clark performed with several theatre companies in the southeast U.S., including The Warehouse Theatre, The Rolling Rep Theatre, Southeastern Theatrical Productions and also the longest running production in North America, The Lost Colony Outdoor Drama.

Executive Director: Melissa Nicholson Melissa@Gamuttheatre.org Melissa has served as Executive Director of Popcorn Hat Players Children’s Theatre for over ten years and Managing Director of PHP’s partner company, Harrisburg Shakespeare Festival, for seven years before the two companies merged in 2001 to become The Gamut. She is a founding member of the Harrisburg Area Theatre Alliance, serves on the Arts & Entertainment Committee for the Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art, and has served as Secretary of the Shakespeare Theatre Association, the national organization of professional Shakespeare theatres.

Executive Director: Melissa Nicholson
Melissa@Gamuttheatre.org

Melissa has served as Executive Director of Popcorn Hat Players Children’s Theatre for over ten years and Managing Director of PHP’s partner company, Harrisburg Shakespeare Festival, for seven years before the two companies merged in 2001 to become The Gamut. She is a founding member of the Harrisburg Area Theatre Alliance, serves on the Arts & Entertainment Committee for the Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art, and has served as Secretary of the Shakespeare Theatre Association, the national organization of professional Shakespeare theatres.

Managing Director: Tara Herweg-Mann Tara@Gamuttheatre.org Tara is so excited to be a part of Gamut’s Core Company!  Originally from Camp Hill, she earned her BA in Theatre from DeSales University, spent her 20s trying to “find herself,” then found herself in New York City, getting her MFA in Acting from the New School for Drama.  Her most recent roles include Volumnia in Coriolanus, the Duke in Measure for Measure, (both with Gamut), Mama/Nun in the East Coast premiere of The Texas Chainsaw Musical! (Bootless Stageworks, Wilmington, DE), and Suzy in Theatre Harrisburg’s Wait Until Dark.  Many thanks to Mom, Dad, and Matt for being tirelessly supportive! 

Managing Director: Tara Herweg-Mann
Tara@Gamuttheatre.org

Tara is so excited to be a part of Gamut’s Core Company!  Originally from Camp Hill, she earned her BA in Theatre from DeSales University, spent her 20s trying to “find herself,” then found herself in New York City, getting her MFA in Acting from the New School for Drama.  Her most recent roles include Volumnia in Coriolanus, the Duke in Measure for Measure, (both with Gamut), Mama/Nun in the East Coast premiere of The Texas Chainsaw Musical! (Bootless Stageworks, Wilmington, DE), and Suzy in Theatre Harrisburg’s Wait Until Dark.  Many thanks to Mom, Dad, and Matt for being tirelessly supportive! 

Associate Artistic Director : Thomas Weaver Thomas@Gamuttheatre.org Thomas has been a Core Company member since the summer of 2012.  Since joining Gamut’s family, Thomas has been honored to play the title characters in Coriolanus, My Name is Asher Lev, and Beowulf, as well as Enobarbus in Antony & Cleopatra, Horatio in Hamlet, Angelo in Measure for Measure, and Ichabod Crane in The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.  In addition to credits with Open Stage of Harrisburg, Thomas has worked at various theatres across the country including Great Lakes Theatre Festival (Cleveland, OH) and The Dixie Theatre (Apalachicola, FL).  He holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Otterbein University.  A native of Camp Hill, Thomas is both thrilled and grateful to be doing what he loves in the community he has always called home.

Associate Artistic Director : Thomas Weaver
Thomas@Gamuttheatre.org

Thomas has been a Core Company member since the summer of 2012.  Since joining Gamut’s family, Thomas has been honored to play the title characters in Coriolanus, My Name is Asher Lev, and Beowulf, as well as Enobarbus in Antony & Cleopatra, Horatio in Hamlet, Angelo in Measure for Measure, and Ichabod Crane in The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.  In addition to credits with Open Stage of Harrisburg, Thomas has worked at various theatres across the country including Great Lakes Theatre Festival (Cleveland, OH) and The Dixie Theatre (Apalachicola, FL).  He holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Otterbein University.  A native of Camp Hill, Thomas is both thrilled and grateful to be doing what he loves in the community he has always called home.

Marketing Manager: Gabriella DeCarli
Gabriella@Gamuttheatre.org

Gabriella DeCarli is a graduate of Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Musical Theatre. She began working with Gamut Theatre in the summer of 2015 where she was a Teaching Assistant for Gamut Theatre Summer Academy. Before coming to Harrisburg Gabriella worked with The Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera Academy of Musical Theatre and The Gretna Theatre in Mount Gretna PA. Some of her favorite acting credits include Halina in Red Velvet, Hermia in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors and Little Sally in Urinetown. Gabriella is so thankful to be a part of this extraordinary theatre company that allows her to do what she loves every single day.

Ross Carmichael: Technical Director Ross@Gamuttheatre.org Ross grew up in southern York county and received a B.A. in Theatre from York College of Pennsylvania. He stayed on-staff as the Head Carpenter for the Theatre department and spent a summer as the Production Manager for the Powerhouse Theatre Apprentice company. He has performed coast-to-coast with companies like REACH, FoodPlay Productions, Hampstead Stage Company, and the Camden Shakespeare Festival. After spending years on the road, Ross is thrilled to return to the company that gave him his start in professional theatre.

Ross Carmichael: Technical Director
Ross@Gamuttheatre.org

Ross grew up in southern York county and received a B.A. in Theatre from York College of Pennsylvania. He stayed on-staff as the Head Carpenter for the Theatre department and spent a summer as the Production Manager for the Powerhouse Theatre Apprentice company. He has performed coast-to-coast with companies like REACH, FoodPlay Productions, Hampstead Stage Company, and the Camden Shakespeare Festival. After spending years on the road, Ross is thrilled to return to the company that gave him his start in professional theatre.

Resident Theatre Manager: Michelle Kay Smith Gamut.rtm@gmail.com Michelle is thrilled to join the Gamut team as a Core Company Actor and the new Resident Theatre Manager! Michelle earned a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre & Dance from James Madison University. Her professional endeavors began with the Gamut Theatre Summer Academy (TA 2013). Since that time, she has performed with theatres across the US including the Carolina Actors Studio Theatre, Prairie Fire Children’s Theatre, and The Players Theatre (Off-Broadway).

Resident Theatre Manager: Michelle Kay Smith
Gamut.rtm@gmail.com

Michelle is thrilled to join the Gamut team as a Core Company Actor and the new Resident Theatre Manager! Michelle earned a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre & Dance from James Madison University. Her professional endeavors began with the Gamut Theatre Summer Academy (TA 2013). Since that time, she has performed with theatres across the US including the Carolina Actors Studio Theatre, Prairie Fire Children’s Theatre, and The Players Theatre (Off-Broadway).


Gamut Theatre Group Board of Directors

Ronald Hoffman, President

Brad Winnick, Vice-President

Keith Li, Treasurer

Amy J. Mendelsohn, Secretary

Dr. Marvin Berger

Alexis Campbell

Ruby Doub

Marla Gibson

Patrick Hughes

Sanford Krevsky

J. Clark Nicholson

Melissa H. Nicholson

Kristopher T. Smull