Alaina Manchester is a visiting professor of theatre in Gannon University’s School of Communication Arts. Alaina graduated from Gannon University with her BA in Theatre and Communication Arts and she earned her MFA in Acting from the University of Florida where she was awarded a Graduate Fellowship. She earned her Actors Equity Membership Candidacy Card by performing at the Hippodrome State Theatre in Gainesville Florida in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Hermia) and A Christmas Carol (Mrs. Fezzywig). She has also performed internationally in Germany, Czech Republic, and Greece with UF’s International Theatre Program: A Streetcar Named Desire (Eunice), Oedipus (Servant), and Romeo and Juliet (Nurse) a role for which she earned an Irene Ryan nomination through KCACTF. In 2015, Alaina earned recognition from the Society of American Fight Directors as an actor combatant in unarmed stage combat, completing her skills proficiency renewals with a recommended pass. This is in addition to the recognition she earned from the Society of American Fight Directors as an actor combatant in unarmed stage combat with a recommended pass and as an actor combatant in rapier and dagger with a basic pass. In 2011, Alaina was also recognized by The British Academy of Stage and Screen Combat as passing with distinction in unarmed stage combat and the use of rapier and dagger as well as by Dueling Arts International as a theatrical combatant in unarmed stage combat and an intermediate combatant in the use of rapier and dagger.
Her directing credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Gannon University Shakespeare Summer Nights, Altar Boyz and Melancholy Play at Gannon University, All The King’s Women at The Erie Playhouse, and Dorian Grey and Seminar at Dramashop. She has taught acting at The Erie Playhouse and Triple Threat and has staged multiple moments of stage violence in numerous theatre productions.