New programming

Please read our UPDATED POLICIES

Still Life with Iris Poster


By Steven Dietz

Directed by Cori Anne Laemmel
Produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois


Still Life with Iris is a fantastical adventure which centers on a little girl's search for the simplest of things: home. Iris lives with her mom in the land of Nocturno—a magical place in which the workers make, by night, all of the things we see in the world by day. Also, in Nocturno, memories do not reside in people's minds but instead are kept in their coats (called "Past Coats"). The rulers of Nocturno, the Great Goods, are determined to have the "best" of everything on their island—and therefore take Iris away from her home and bring her to Great Island to be their daughter. To ease the pain of this separation, they remove her Past Coat, leaving her with no memory of her home or her family. All that remains of Iris' past is a single button from her coat. Using the button as a clue, Iris joins with friends she meets on her journey—Annabel Lee (a young woman from the sea) and Mozart (the composer, age 11)—and frees herself from the Great Goods. She returns to Nocturno, having found her past, and her home.

September 28 - October 1
Thursday to Saturday at 7pm, Sunday at 6pm

The Theater Bug is located at 4809 Gallatin Pike, Nashville in the back building of New Life Baptist Church.

Classes and Programs

We are constantly adding new programs and classes including original plays and musicals! We have programming for home schoolers, facilitate Shakespeare camps, host concerts, musicals and plays, and so much more! Be sure to sign up for our mailing list to be updated with the most current programming.


October 9th-13th
9am-12pm Ages 6-10
12:30pm-3:30pm Ages 11-17
Full week $125
A La Carte Workshops $35/each
Financial Aid Available

This fall break we will be hosting a workshop series that gives students a chance to improve on their audition technique, gain confidence and receive one on one feedback and coaching from our fantastic instructors. Each day will feature a different theatrical genre, ending in an audition showcase for local professionals who will provide encouragements and feedback on their auditions! Sign up for the whole week, or just the workshops that fit your needs! Students will be expected to bring some prepared materials for Shakespeare, Audition Monologues and Musical theater vocal audition workshops.

Shakespeare Audition Workshop
Instructed by Santiago Sosa and Morgan Davis

This day will include a crash course in understanding and preparing for Shakespeare, physicality, voice and interpretation. All students will be able to perform their prepared monologue for their peers with one and one coaching and feedback from the instructor.

Audition Monologue Workshop
Instructed by Cori Anne Laemmel

For this day we will talk about monologue preparation, character development, delivery and how to make your monologue as interesting and powerful as possible! All students will be able to perform their prepared monologue for their peers with one and one coaching and feedback from the instructor.

Vocal Audition Workshop
Instructed by Cori Anne Laemmel and Fleming McWilliams
Accompanist: Kelsi Fulton

During this workshop we will talk about how to best care for your voice in the days leading up to auditions, how to stay warmed up while you wait, song interpretation and how to best communicate with your accompanist. All students will be able to perform their prepared vocal selection for their peers with one and one coaching and feedback from the instructor.

Musical Theatre Dance Workshop
Instructed by: Tosha Pendergrast

This workshop is all about learning musical theatre dance combinations that are similar to what you may experience in a dance audition for a musical. You will get tips on good warm-ups prior to arrival,  how to quickly pick up steps, great questions to ask and how to sell the material with or without dance experience!

Audition Showcase
Panelists TBA

Students will be able to perform all materials worked on in the week as a full audition package. They will then get feedback from a panel of local directors, actors and theatre professionals to get a peek at what goes on "behind the table." We will also discuss how to put together your resume and head shot and how to dress on an audition day!


The 6th Annual Winter Concert

Ages 6-18
Performances: December 8th-10th
Auditions: October 28th
Tuition: $150 (financial aid available)

Directed by: Cori Anne Laemmel
Musical Arrangements & Direction by: Laura Matula
Choreography by: Bakari King

Winter concert has become a favorite for audience and performers alike! Performers will rehearse and perform a variety of music including solos, duos, small group and full ensemble pieces culminating in a full length concert extravaganza! 

Audition Requirements: Please sign up for for a separate spot for EACH performer under THEIR name. Each performer needs to prepare 1 minute of a song in the style of their choosing. Please bring EITHER a karaoke track (no vocal) or sheet music in the correct key. No a capella please. If you are using sheet music, please schedule your audition between 10am-Noon when we have an accompanist. Please arrive a few minutes early to fill out paperwork. Please also bring your calendars to enter in your conflicts. Each performer is allowed 4 conflicts in the rehearsal period (Nov.5-Dec.3 with Thanksgiving Break Nov.22-26.) Rehearsals will take place after school hours and on weekends. Performers will not be called every day. Mandatory dates are December 4th-7th for tech rehearsals and December 8th-10th for performances. All who audition will not be cast. 

Break a leg and HAVE FUN!

Cori Anne Laemmel

Cori Anne Laemmel is the artistic director of The Theater Bug. Cori grew up in a youth theater program that was one of the most influential parts of her young life. She studied voice and song writing at the Musician's Institute of Hollywood before moving to Nashville a decade ago. Cori was the youth programs director for Street Theatre Company where she created and directed programming for 5 years. Cori has also worked as a teaching artist for The Nashville Children's Theatre Company, The Nashville Shakespeare Festival, Studio Tenn Theatre Company, Metro Parks Nashville, Vanderbilt University, University School of Nashville and several other elementary and middle schools in middle Tennessee. Cori has written and produced 10 original plays and musicals for The Theater bug that have since been performed at The Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Studio Tenn Theater Company, The Public Theater of Kentucky and Edmonson Elementary School. Cori has directed almost all shows produced by The Theater Bug in the past 6 years. Cori hails from Santa Cruz, CA and has proudly called Nashville home for over ten years with her husband and son.

Screen Shot 2017-09-25 at 1.31.32 PM.png


Laura Matula is an entrepreneur, artist, actor and performer based in Nashville, TN. Laura graduated from Berklee College of music after studying Music Business/Management and Vocal Performance and moved to Nashville where she worked for years in the music and entertainment industry. She is currently an owner and partner of MA2LA, a husband and wife Nashville-based creative firm specializing in brand identity, photography and film. Laura performs regularly in professional theater in Nashville, TN as well as in the recording studio and is honored to have been able to perform on some of Nashville’s greatest stages, including the Schermerhorn Symphony Center, TPAC’s Jackson Hall and coming up at the Ryman with Studio Tenn’s THE CASH LEGACY. Laura has most been seen on stage in such iconic roles as The Wicked Witch of the West in Studio Tenn’s ‘The Wizard of Oz’, Fantine in ‘Les Miserables’, Eliza Doolittle in ‘My Fair Lady’ and more. She has more recently expanded her focus into music directing, arranging and conducting as well as vocal coaching. Most importantly Laura is a wife and mother.

Laura Donahue

Laura Donohue (Teaching Artist) has been singing, teaching singing, and talking about singing for almost twenty years.  She has served on the faculties of Belmont University and MTSU, and maintains a private voice studio of songwriters, rockers, actors, rappers, opera singers, and shower singers of all ages and levels.  Laura is also the co-creator of GirlsUpAloud, an empowering musical experience for middle school girls.  She is VERY excited to be working with The Theatre Bug, as she is a HUGE fan.  When she's not making music or teaching music she likes hanging out in East Nashville with her awesome family and friends.

Bakari J. King

Bakari is a middle school theatre instructor at University School of Nashville. He also works professionally in local theatres here in Nashville. He also enjoys playing trombone and being cheerleading coach. Bakari says, “I really enjoy sharing my passion with others, either on a stage or in a classroom. I especially love interacting with younger students because I am a big kid at heart.” He got his start late in his high school years and did not have the tools and know how that he has now. This is why he is excited to show our kids what they need to know so they can succeed now. Bakari is always to excited to work at The Theater Bug in whatever capacity they need him in. This is the place where his inner child, G’Greg, can run free and where he can share his teaching philosophy of teaching life lessons through theater


Casey, like many of the Bugs, began her singing, dancing, and acting career at a very young age.  She has her BFA in Musical Theatre from Belmont University (2012) and then lived in NYC for a short time post-graduation. She is now currently in the process of getting her Masters of Arts in Teaching Theatre, also from Belmont.  Locally, Casey performs regularly with Studio Tenn, appearing in their productions of Hello Dolly!, Cinderella, My Fair Lady, Fiddler on the Roof, and Wizard of Oz.  She has also performed around the country at theatres such as The Arts Center of Coastal Carolina (Hilton Head, SC), Flat Rock Playhouse (Hendersonville, NC), Summer Repertory Theatre (Santa Rosa, CA), and Transcendence Theatre Company (Sonoma, CA).  Casey's teaching experience includes instructor at New York Kids Club, camp counselor and Director of Education at Transcendence Theatre Company, dance captain and assistant choreographer at Belmont University, and more! She is thrilled to be a part of the amazing team here at the Bug! 

Santiago Sosa

Santiago Sosa earned a BFA from Texas State University and an MFA from the University of Wisconsin. As an actor, teaching artist, and/or voice & text coach, Santiago has worked at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, American Players Theatre, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Muse of Fire Shakespeare Company, Door Shakespeare, Nashville Shakespeare Festival, Writers Theatre, Forward Theatre, Definition Theatre, TPAC, NCT, Nashville Rep and Shakespeare Rep.  He also was the artistic director of From the Branch Theatre Company for seven years. Santiago is the recipient of the Horton Foote award for playwriting, the Robert Yeager Award for Directing, and the Advanced Opportunity Fellowship for acting.