Steve Burnette (Creative Entertainment Officer and Co-founder) has nearly forty years of experience in the entertainment industry as an actor, director, teacher, writer and producer, from Ohio to New York, from Chicago to Maine, and many points in-between.
As an actor some of Steve’s highlights and lowlights include playing the Phantom in an absolutely awful production of Phantom of the Opera that ran for six months, but seemed to last an eternity for both cast and audiences; and other starring roles in more plays and musicals than you can wave a jazz hand at, not to mention touring the country playing Hiawatha and Hiawatha's mother to thousands of kids in 240 schools in thirty-three states, but not all at the same time.
During his impressionable cub years while studying in New York and managing one of the city’s largest theatrical bookstores Steve played miniscule roles on a myriad of ‘Daytime Dramas’ such as Loving, Search for Tomorrow, Ryan’s Hope, Another World, One Life to Live, and All My Children just to name…well to name six. More recently Steve has appeared from time to time on Saturday Night Live. You may recognize Steve in the background by his large horse teeth that seem to take up half the TV screen.
On a number of occasions Steve provided improv comedy shows for the late President George H. W. and First Lady Barbara Bush and various charitable events they would host in Kennebunkport.
Steve has also worked the broadcasting airwaves in years past where he created and performed all original comedy, penned and voiced numerous commercials, and served as one-third of a popular morning radio show.
Besides his wife, son, step-kids, doggie, sister and brother, nieces and nephews, distance running, chips, WLW radio, spaghetti, his faith, the state of Ohio, the smell of toast, looking at things, chocolate, and airports, Steve’s real love is sketch and improv comedy. That love, along with his car took Steve to Chicago later in his career to study, create, and perform at The Second City Conservatory.
Despite what Mr. Hanright's bio might indicate below, Steve actually met Maine Rep’s Artistic Director David Hanright in prison when Steve was performing in the Bruce Springsteen tribute band, “Born to Pun” and Dave jumped up onto the stage to do his best Courtney Cox impression. Upon his release Dave joined the band on their tour, working concessions. Some of this might be a slight exaggeration.
Steve’s association with Maine Rep’s General Manager Christine Madden began when he was appearing as a model for an art class Christine was attending. A hand model. Some of this might be a slight exaggeration as well.
In 2019 Steve will be honored with the coveted 'Webby Award' for Longest Bio on a Website.
David Hanright, (Artistic Director and Co-founder) once played the hippie in a cub-scout sketch during the Pack 132 monthly meeting in 1972. Critics were quick to point out that David had little or no experience as a hippie but his method made him as believable as Dennis Hopper riding a Harley down Route 66.
More recently Dave has been involved in local community theater and local Shakespeare Theater. Dave has been teaching high-school Theater and Visual Arts for the past twenty-four years: twenty-two of which have been spent happily directing the drama students at Thornton Academy.
He currently serves on the board of the Maine Drama Council and is a Maine State Representative to the New England Drama Council.
Mr. Hanright has traveled with Drama students on three occasions to Stratford and London, England for workshops with the Royal Shakespeare Center.
Dave met Steve one rainy afternoon in Saco, where they shared laughter, coffee, and a mutual fondness for re-runs of the Carol Burnett Show.
To date, Dave has been the creative genius behind some of Maine Repertory’s crowning moments, such as “stapling the carpet”, “cutting those 2x4s”, and most recently and quite dramatically, “the hanging of the medicine cabinet”. But most will remember Dave for his stunning work as Corky in "Bulletin Board Bully".