The Creative Team

In Alphebetical Order

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Sean Bayntun - Music Director/Piano

He/Him

A descendent of Ukrainian, Austrian, and British immigrants, Sean grew up, and currently resides, on the ancestral and unceded lands of the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ and Sḵwx̱wú7mesh speaking peoples (Burnaby). Having grown up steeped in classical music, Sean made his orchestral debut at 16 with the White Rock Symphony, and at 18 performed as a soloist with the VSO. He graduated from UBC with a BMus before attending Rice University (Houston) on full scholarship studying with Dr. Jon Kimura Parker.  With Dr. Parker’s encouragement to explore genres and performance beyond classical piano, Sean played Otto in Design for Living and music directed Bat Boy: the Musical. Returning to Vancouver in 2006, Sean joined a pop/rock band as a keyboardist/writer and began freelancing as a session and performance musician (including a tour with the Canadian Tenors). He currently is an active member of Leisure Club and DAñSE. In 2009, he music directed Songs for a New World (Not Another Musical Co-op), and the following year was the MD for PSP’s production of Bat Boy. As an MD, his many nominations and awards include The Wild Party (Pint-Size Tall), The Light in the Piazza and Herringbone (PSP). Music is expression and expression is for everyone.

Adrien Hodgson - Technical Director

He/Him

Adrien is a North Vancouver based Theatre Technician and graduate from Capilano University’s Technical Theatre program. Since graduating in 2018, he has worked for many companies such as URP, the Museum Of Anthropology at UBC, and BC Bike Race, and is currently an in-house technician at the Kay Meek Arts Centre and Presentation House Theatre. Adrien has been a part of Painted Fern Productions since its inception in 2019. While working on The Girl Next Door is his first time working as Technical Director, he jumped at the chance of filling other roles as well, such as Lighting Design, Set Construction, and Sound Design. Adrien is incredibly excited to help bring the original queer musical to life and to share it with all of you. He is deeply thankful to the rest of the team for trusting him with the role of Technical Director and has thoroughly enjoyed developing his skills further.

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Maiyah Johnson - Stage Manager

She/Her

Maiyah Johnson (she/her) is a local stage manager from Burnaby, BC- the traditional, ancestral and unceded land of the hən̓ q̓ əmin̓ əm̓ and Sḵwx̱wú7mesh speaking peoples. She graduated with a diploma in Stagecraft & Event Technology from Douglas College in 2021, where she focused her studies on the stage management of theatre productions. On top of SMing, Maiyah also works as a member of the Front of House staff team at Vancouver Civic Theatres. She is thrilled to be working with Painted Fern Productions as the Stage Manager for The Girl Next Door. Past credits include: Zastrozzi (Stage Manager, Douglas College Theatre), Julius Caesar (Stage Manager, Douglas College Theatre) and Macbeth (Assistant Stage Manager, Douglas College Theatre).

Emily Matchette - Producer/Swing

She/Her

Emily is a queer theatre artrist residing on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem First Nation) and could not be more excited to be involved as a producer with Painted Fern. A graduate of the Musical Theatre program at Capilano University, and the Bachelor of Performing Arts Program at Douglas College, Emily teaches dance and musical theatre at the Lindbjerg Academy of Performing Arts in Coquitlam to students ages two to fifty plus. Emily is passionate about youth theatre and has worked on CTORA’s (Children’s Theatre of Richmond Association) last three productions of Peter Pan Jr (director), Cinderella (choreographer) and Beauty and the Beast Jr (Assistant Director). Select performing credits include: The Mad Hatter/Ensemble in SHREK the Musical (Align Entertainment), Ensemble in Mamma Mia (Arts Club Theatre Company), Millie Dillmount in Thoroughly Modern Millie (Exit 22), and Lou Ann in Hairspray (Theatre Under The Stars). Choreographer/director credits include: Elf Jr (Lindbjerg Academy), Peter Pan Jr (CTORA), American Idiot (URP - Ovation Nomination for Best Choreography), Thoroughly Modern Millie JR (Lindbjerg Academy), Cinderella (CTORA), Draining the Swamp (Curious Creations), Ten Blocks on the Camino Real (Arbutus Studios) and Legally Blonde Jr (Lindbjerg Academy). 

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Ava Maria Safai - Composer/Lyricist/Music Producer

She/Her

Ava Maria Safai (She/Her) is an accomplished singer-songwriter with over forty original songs in her published catalogue, the first of which was featured on Lifetime’s Dance Moms. She has composed music for projects such as Unmasked, which received its debut at the Cannes Film Festival, and Gruesome Playground Injuries. Her work as a musician has earned her numerous awards, including the City of North Vancouver’s Rise Up award and the gold medal for the Vancouver Kiwanis Festival’s Provincial Musical Theatre competition in 2021. She is also an active director and actor in the theatre community, her most recent work including the sold-out original production INHUMAN/E with her non-profit The Harlequin Theatre Society and the role of Regan in Promethean Theatre’s King Lear. Ava Maria holds her BFA in Acting from UBC and is currently completing her ARCT in multiple disciplines. Composer-lyricist, music producer, and music supervisor are just a few of the hats she has worn throughout the development of this project, which is also her first full-length original musical. Ava Maria couldn't be more excited to share the work she has done with Sara Mayfield on The Girl Next Door with the world! www.AvaMariaSafai.com

Sara Mayfield - Writer/Director/Producer

She/Her

Sara Mayfield (She/Her) is a queer french-canadian artist based in Vancouver, BC. She is a  graduate of Capilano University's musical theatre acting program, a podcaster, a playwright, and a classically trained singer. Upon graduating university, she got contracted to perform in the original musical Skis and Skates in Rossland BC, playing the lead “Cap” in this show about the first Canadian women's hockey tournament. Further professional credits include playing Antonia, Ferdinand, and Stephano in Shakespeare Canada’s touring production of The Tempest, as well as previous credits with the Vancouver Opera and UK based dance company, Sirenscrossings. More recently during the first lockdown, she began co-producing and acting on Tabletop Tiddies, a queer and feminist dungeons and dragons podcast run entirely by marginalised genders, which is now entering into it’s third season. Further achievements include having her level 8 RCM Voice, level 3 RCM Piano, not to mention this project! Through working on this musical, Sara acted as Set Designer, Prop Designer, Costume Designer, Co-Social Media Manager, Advertising Coordinator, as well as what is listed above! She is delighted to work on The Girl Next Door, with over 20 songs and a two-act script created with Ava Maria Safai. Linktr.ee/mccupcakes

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Isabella Woolston - Assistant Stage Manager

She/Her

Isabella Woolston is a Vancouver based stage manager living on the traditional unceded territory of the Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Temíx̱w (Squamish), šxʷməθkʷəy̓əmaɁɬ təməxʷ (Musqueam), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ təməxʷ (Tsleil-Waututh) First Nations. She is a graduate of Douglas College’s Stagecraft and Event Technology program (2022) and will be attending UBC’s Theatre Design & Production program in the fall. Past credits include Performance Lab (Assistant Stage Manager, Douglas College), Light the Way (Stage Manager, Douglas College), and Blue Window (Alternate Stage Manager, Douglas College).