Gateway Theatre Box Office: Now Open. Find our COVID-19 Health and Safety plans here.
Gateway Academy: Winter registration is now open. Limited spots available.

Donate Now

Academy Faculty


You are here

Gateway Academy Faculty

The Academy Instructors are professional artists. We bring you working artist-educators who are passionate about sharing their expertise with a new generation of performers.

Ruth McIntosh

Ruth McIntosh (she, her, hers)
Education Manager
A professional actor for 20+ years, Ruth has worked in theatres across Canada and has taught across the Lower Mainland, including at Gateway Academy and the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts. A Dramaturg and Writer for dance theatre, Ruth is a graduate of the Vancouver Playhouse School of Acting.

Nicola Davies (she, her, hers)
Nicola is a pianist, music director, and arts administrator, and this is her first year working with Gateway. Her theatre work encompasses over forty productions as music director and pianist, including Carmen with Opera Kelowna, Sweeney Todd with Secondary Characters, and The Addams Family with the Winnipeg All-Dentist Musical. She holds a Masters in Collaborative Piano from the University of Manitoba, and also studied vocal performance, conducting, and biology. Music and theatre teach us much about ourselves and about being a caring human, and Nicola loves to create opportunities and be part of this discovery process with students.

Manami Hara

Manami Hara (she, her, hers)
Manami Hara immigrated from Tokyo, Japan to pursue her dream of becoming a theatre artist in North America. She has been successfully building her career as an actor, playwright, instructor, interpreter/translator, dramaturge and director for the past three decades. Most recently she was seen in Marjorie Chan’s China Doll at Gateway Theatre and vAct’s production of Tetsuro Shigematsu’s new play Kuroko at the Cultch. Manami has worked with companies across Canada including Arts Club Theatre Company, Boca del Lupo, Carousel Theatre, The Cultch, Factory Theatre, Firehall Arts Centre, Frank Theatre, Gateway Theatre, Globe Theatre, Grand Theatre, Horseshoes & Hand Grenades Theatre, La Luna Productions, National Arts Centre and many more.  She is a Jessie Richardson Award winner and nominee for her acting and collaborative creations. She feels extremely privileged to be part of the awesome Instructors and Education team at the Gateway Academy where she can continue to be passionate about teaching youth the magic of theatre making, acting, storytelling, and ensemble spirit.

Person with brown eyes, hair and beard with a blue collared shirt in front of a beige background.

Nathan Kay (he, him, his)
Nathan is a Vancouver based actor and instructor, and is very excited to be teaching at Gateway Academy for the first time. Nathan is a graduate of Studio 58's acting program in 2016 and has appeared in shows across Canada and in 2019 travelled to Hong Kong with Neworld Theatre's King Arthur's Night. Nathan's work as an instructor has centred around making sure everyone's ideas are honoured and respected as well as challenging students to find what they love and go after it!

Eri Kikuchi (she, her, hers)
Eri is the piano accompanist for the musical theatre program on Saturdays for the first time at Gateway Academy. Eri's piano training was at the Arts Connection School in Steveston, following the Royal Conservatory of Music program, both of which gave her opportunities to perform on the piano at the Gateway Theatre. She graduated with a Bachelor of Business degree and a Diploma in Expressive Arts Education. She teaches piano in Vancouver and is involved in composing music for another theatre production called the Rizal Intercultural Theatre. Eri looks forward to playing the piano to give the children's stories a musical layer!

Malissa Palliyaguru (she, her, hers)
Malissa is an actor, choreographer, singer and performing arts educator, and is very happy to be teaching at Gateway Academy for the first time! She has performed across BC, as well as overseas, in musicals, operas, and theatre productions and has spent the last 10 years teaching community theatre and dance to children and adults from all walks of life. Malissa is a firm believer in the powerful and transformative nature of theatre - where everyone's differences are celebrated and accepted in a supportive, inclusive, accessible, and exciting community where everyone has a voice that deserves the space to be heard.

Amanda Testini (she, her, hers)
Amanda is a performer, choreographer, director and educator, and this is her first year teaching at the Gateway Academy! She is a graduate of both the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts and Studio 58. Amanda has worked on shows at the Arts Club, Bard on the Beach, Vancouver Opera, the Belfry, Carousel Theatre for Young People, the Firehall, shameless hussy productions, the Cultch, Opera Kelowna, Theatre Under the Stars, Theatre Replacement, Electric Company and, of course, the Gateway where she played 'Belle' in A Christmas Carol. Amanda believes theatre is the perfect place to practice compassion, empathy, play, imagination, and teamwork.

Julia Ullrich (she, her, hers)
Julia is a musical theatre artist and educator returning for her second year at Gateway Academy. She graduated from Capilano University's musical theatre program in 2013 and went on to gain her Bachelor of Education from UBC in 2017. She has performed in such roles as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, Maria Rainer in The Sound of Music, and Katherine Plummer in Disney's Newsies! Across B.C. Julia loves empowering students to take charge of their own learning experiences while also pushing them to take risks and try new things.


Raugi Yu (he, him, his)
Raugi Yu is no stranger to Gateway Academy, having been an instructor with us at various times since the early 2000’s. You may also recognize him from such Gateway shows as, Thoroughly Modern MillieI Lost My Husband and The King Of The Yees. Most recently, Carried Away On The Crest Of A Wave for The Arts Club, and now in a new position for the Arts Club, Livestream Director. Raugi is thrilled to be back teaching this year and is looking forward to exploring new forms of theatre creation and artistry with all the amazing students and faculty.