About Us

Nicole Thompson, Director Palos Verdes HS DramaNicole Thompson (Director)

Nicole is thrilled to be the head of the drama program here at Palos Verdes High School. A South Bay native, Nicole holds a BA in Dramatic Arts from the University of California, Santa Barbara, a teaching credential in Drama/English from San Diego State University, and has trained at New York University’s CAP21 Musical Theatre Conservatory. Prior to teaching at PVHS, she taught in San Diego at the Coronado School of the Arts, the La Jolla Playhouse, and the Old Globe Theatre. Her directing credits include Palos Verdes High School’s productions of Avenue Q, Shrek the Musical, Leading Ladies, Legally Blonde, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Wedding Singer, Lend Me a Tenor, Urinetown, The Iliad, the Odyssey, and all of Greek Mythology in 99 Minutes or Less, Footloose, The Diviners, Bat Boy, Rumors, and the PV-Pen summer productions of Into the Woods and Jekyll and Hyde.

Christopher Albrecht, Choreographer, Palos Verdes HIgh School Drama DepartmentChristopher Albrecht (Choreographer)

Christopher M. Albrecht, UCLA class of 2010, is proud to work alongside Nicole Thompson in the PVHS Drama Department.  He is the resident choreographer at Mira Costa High, West Torrance High and is on faculty at Cypress College.  Credits include: Rock of Ages at Summer Repertory Theater; Urinetown with the Coeurage Theater Company (Better Lemons Ticket Holder Award for Best Choreography); The Drowsy Chaperone, Urinetown, and In The Heights at CSUNorthridge; Hairspray and She Loves Me at the Chance Theater; Hairspray and The Drowsy Chaperone at Torrance Theater Company; and Is There Life After High School? with the UCLA MFA acting program.

Kirsten Chandler, Choreographer Palos Verdes HS DramaKirsten Chandler (Choreographer)

Kirsten Chandler (Choreographer): Kirsten’s world premiere, national tour and regional credits onstage include starring roles in The Rocky Horror Show, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Ragtime,Sweet Charity, Little Shop of Horrors, The Marvelous Wonderettes, Lulu, I Love You You’re Perfect Now Change, They’re Playing Our Song, and Jacques Brel. As a recording artist, Kirsten provided the voice of Pocahontas for Disney’s World on Ice, commercials, radio and television, and can be heard as Princess Daria in the upcoming animated feature Princess and the Pea. For the past several years, she has turned her attention toward directing and choreographing, serving at the helm of Musical Theatre Guild’s Chess, Little Women, and Bat Boy, Cabrillo Music Theatre’s You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, as well as countless productions for high schools and colleges across the Southland. She is now a proud faculty member at AMDA, the college conservatory for the performing arts, where she teaches musical theatre. She and her husband, actor/director Stan Chandler, have performed numerous concerts at Disney Hall, New York’s Town Hall, and with the California Philharmonic Orchestra. Together, they have produced an album entitled A Quiet Thing, and two amazing boys, nine-year-old Addie and five-year-old Tucker.

Sue Holmes Secrist, Vocal Director Palos Verdes HS DramaSue Holmes Secrist (Vocal Director)

Music has always been an integral part of Sue’s life, ever since she started piano at a young age and sang for anyone who would listen.
She holds a Bachelor’s degree in music from Stanford University, with an emphasis on voice and choral conducting, and pursued Master’s work with Dr. Howard Swan, also in choral conducting. As a full-time mother raising six children, musical activities continued at a slower pace for a while, but allowed her to study the science of vocal development and singing techniques through NATS, the National Association for Teachers of Singing. She enjoys her work as a voice teacher and musical theater coach, having had the privilege of working with many, many talented young people at local schools and churches. Her current work as vocal director for productions at Palos Verdes High School has been a special joy!

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