Faculty & Staff

EMILY LAPPI – Assistant Director & Acting Coach

Emily is an alumni of Tesoro High School’s class of 2010, and has worked as the assistant director and acting coach for the drama department since 2013. Emily has worked professionally as an actor all over Southern California. Some favorite credits include ​A Christmas Carol​ at South Coast Repertory, ​Heaven on Earth​ at La Jolla Playhouse, ​Steel Magnolias​ (Shelby) at P3 Theatre Company, ​Moon Over Buffalo​ (Rosalind) at STAGEStheatre (OC Weekly’s Best Ensemble of 2017), ​Lend Me A Tenor​ (Maggie) & ​Legally Blonde: the Musical​ (Enid) at Covina Center, ​Rabbit Hole​ (Becca) at Santa Ana College, and ​The Medea Project​ (Medea) & ​Company ​(Kathy) at Theatre Out. When she is not on stage or teaching, she works as a private acting coach, and as a freelance theatre director in Los Angeles. Her most recent directorial project, ​If We Run,​ received rave reviews at LA’s Fringe Festival in 2019, including Better Lemon’s Audience Choice Award, Better Lemon’s Critics Choice Award, and was chosen to be a part of the very prestigious Encore Performance of the festival. To see more of Emily’s work visit ​www.emilylappi.com

JENNY JULANDER – Costumes Manager & Administrative Assistant

Jenny Julander has been involved in theatre most of her life. She made her debut as Veruca Salt in “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” in elementary school where she was lovingly pushed down a chute by squirrels and continued in theatre throughout high school.  While in college Jenny, along with her husband Treg, directed a summer high school Shakespeare program and eventually started a middle school after school theatre program. She has performed in multiple community theatre Broadway reviews. Jenny has been working with Tesoro High School since 2010. She enjoys running the costume shed as well as creating and sewing costumes. Her proudest costume design to date was a 6 foot tall orange fur monster that could open his mouth, stick out his tongue, and squeak. Jenny lives with her husband, adult daughter and 2 dogs who are convinced they are human and deserve all the perks of grandbabies. She has one other grown daughter living out of state and dreams of living somewhere exotic like New Zealand.


Vinny Tangherlini (Class of 2011, baby!) is a Southern California native now living in Chicago, a published poet, Nicola Tesla in a former life, and a “registered” anarchist. He is a graduate of iO, CIC, and the Annoyance improvisation training programs and currently performs regularly as part of the ComedySportz Ensemble and around the city as part of improvduo “Tangerine.” Past performances include Adira as a not-so-internet Troll and the evil step-dad/Republican icon Daddy Franklin, Yes And…Ish as Frank, an (on brand) Italian-American landlord, Because I Love You as the father/son combo Tom/Ethan, Killing Scrooge as, you guessed it, Scrooge, and The Hamlet Project as Rosencrantz & Guildenstern.  Favorite Minor Character to be Killed off in BBC’s Merlin now streaming on Netflix:  Merlin’s Dad, I forget his name (Balithor?), but he literally dies in that episode so it was like…what’s even the point?  Balimund or Balinor or whatever was really cool though—like a smart, old, hot, swash-buckling, dragon-riding Aragorn, so I guess I’ll say him.Favorite Guitar Riff from a Heart Song:  I could be cliché here and say “Barracuda,” but I think it’s “Crazy on You.”  The acoustic into electric just hits better for me.  Favorite Novel where AT LEAST one main character has a dead spouse:  Rebecca.  And not just jumping on the bandwagon here because of the Netflix movie.  If you haven’t read it, do yourself the biggest favor of your life and do so.  These are tough questions.  

MARK GIBSON – Improv Coach

Mark A. Gibson does a lot of things.
As an improvisor, his work is much more than making stuff up. He has spent the last 8 years of his life performing and teaching improvisation to hundreds of students across 5 different high schools. He was a member of the Comedy Sportz High School League, MainStage player with Improv Revolution, and participated as a designated player and host in the Global Improvisation Initiative at the University of California, Irvine; collaborating with improvisors and educators from across the world.
Mark lives his life onstage…literally. Since he was 13 years old, Mark has been one of the most sought after Magicians at the world famous Magic Castle in Hollywood, CA. Now 26, Mark has been a professional entertainer for half of his life! Performing for clients such as Disney, Bacardi, US Bank, Lamborghini, and Omega. Most recently, Mark was a featured performer on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.
Mark is honored to work with such motivated students and use his years of onstage experience to teach stage presence, imaginative collaboration, and above all, fun!

KEITH HANCOCK – Choir Teacher & Vocal Director

Mr. Hancock is in his 19th year teaching this year, all at Tesoro. Mr. Hancock was recently named the Grammy Music Educator Award winner, chosen out of over 3,500 nominees.  He was also named a top 50 finalist for the Global Teacher Prize, considered the Nobel Prize of teaching, out of 30,000 nominees.  He was also named one of the 100 Most Influential People of Orange County by the Orange County Register.  Mr. Hancock was awarded the Secondary Vocal Music Teacher of the Year by the Orange County Department of Education. In addition, the Tesoro HS music program was named a Grammy Signature School of Excellence, one of five in the country out of over 25,000 high schools.  Tesoro High School has also been honored with the SupportMusic Merit Award from the NAMM Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education as one of 100 schools in the nation out of over 100,000 schools. Mr. Hancock is a contributor to the Alfred Music book and video series, Careers in Music: Preparing Music Students for Any Career. He has vocal directed and/or played piano each year for the annual spring musical at Tesoro, four of which have earned OC Cappies Best Musical awards.  In addition to working at THS, Mr. Hancock is the music director at Compass Bible Church in Aliso Viejo and is a professional portrait and wedding photographer (Bel Canto Photography).  He also does freelance work as a pianist, vocalist, accompanist, arranger, clinician, adjudicator, and recording engineer. He is a member of the American Choral Directors Association and Southern California Vocal Association. Mr. Hancock has been married to his beautiful wife and fellow music teacher, Carly, since 2003, and they have two sons, Joel and Chase.

CRIS STUART – Choreographer

Cris has been the choreographer for Tesoro Theatre Arts since 2014. A few of his favorite productions he has choreographed for Tesoro are Seussical, Once on this Island, and The Drowsy Chaperone. He also choreographs all over Orange County at other high schools such as Capistrano Valley and University High School. He has been in over 20 musicals himself. A few of his favorite past productions are West Side Story, Joseph and the Amazing Tecnicolor Dreamcoat, and Cabaret. He has choreographed musicals since 1993, but has also choreographed several TV commercials, TV shows, and music videos: Coca-Cola, My name is Earl, Suite Life of Zack and Cody, and the “Hollaback Girl” music video with Gwen Stefani-just to name a few!! He has been a cheerleading coach since 1983, with numerous national titles from Tesoro and Capo Valley. He also has choreographed for LA Laker Girls.