Meet Our Team

DJ Howard–Creative Director & Founder

10426580_10203959131210894_6486059027617743830_nWhen DJ Howard was born, the doctors expected brain damage. They caged him in an incubator for two weeks and when his parents adopted him, they knew that their son would prove the medics wrong. They discovered that DJ had an incredible talent of expressing himself through story telling. As a boy, he’d produce plays that brought his community together. 25 years later, while his community had grown, adult DJ hasn’t changed; by creating the Group Project he still strives to bring writers and non-writers together in a fostering space (almost like an incubator) where they can share their stories.

Emily Roth–Production Manager & Co-Founder

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Emily Roth grew up in Michigan and holds a BFA in Fiction Writing from Columbia College.





Sam Hurwitz–Production Assistant

12828311_10207685093619920_8947390895301453936_oSam is a performer, writer, and professional helper around town. Her work has been seen at The Neofuturarium, Second City, The Annoyance, and The LIVINGroom. Her most recent endeavor was assistant stage managing The Silence That Follows at A Red Orchid Theater. She has learned since that she doesn’t like stage managing that much.

Terrence Alexander–Musical Director & Guitarist for The Steins

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Originally hailing from New Jersey, Terrence began his musical exploration playing piano on school desks, table tops, and his own thighs. These days, he studies audio engineering at Columbia College Chicago and can be seen playing with his band Maebreak. Check them out on Facebook!


While growing up in the Twin Cities, Nicole Tuma’s family used to joke that all she ever did was cook, read, and play the flute.  This remains a fair appraisal of her activities, though singing has made it’s way into the mix in recent years.  Nicole has performance degrees from Rutgers University-New Brunswick and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where her primary teachers included Bart Feller (flute), Stephanie Jutt (flute), and Elizabeth Hagedorn (voice). She teaches music at St. Giles School in Oak Park, helps teach and coordinate the Grant Park Music Festival’s Classical Campers program, and freelances throughout the Chicago area. She has performed and presented at both the Wisconsin Flute Festival and the National Flute Association Convention, and is a two-time winner of the Upper Midwest Flute Association’s Laudie Porter Competition.

Ian Cory–Percussionist for The Steins13165827_237477033281685_6873352155691793679_n

Ian Cory is a session musician and writer from Brooklyn, New York. He has performed as part of The Epoch in New York and has worked with Awkward Pause Theater and Refuge Theatre Project in Chicago. Ian has played drums in basements, bars, and clubs since 2004, and when not playing drums he spends his time writing about music and pop culture for Invisible Oranges, Unrecorded, Noisey and anywhere else that will have him.

Eli Wilson–Saxophonist for The Steins
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Eli Wilson took up the saxophone at the age of 10, and played in jazz and classical groups all the way through high school. Upon graduating in 2006, he decided to pursue a Jazz Studies degree at Wayne State University where he studied arranging under the direction of Chris Collins and Russ Miller. Eli’s original composition “The Chaser” was performed by the WSU Big Band at the 2010 Detroit Jazz Festival.


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