About Us

Ridgefield Theater Barn History

In 1965, a handful of Ridgefield residents banded together to form a small theater group dedicated to providing community theater. This organization grew into the Ridgefield Workshop for the Performing Arts and is now known as the Ridgefield Theater Barn. Housed in a rustic converted dairy barn leased from the town of Ridgefield, the Barn continues to produce an ongoing series of comedies, dramas, and musicals. We maintain a production schedule of four shows per year, with performers chosen through open auditions. The cast and crew of every show run the gamut from raw amateurs to seasoned professionals.

All participants, whether on stage or off, are volunteers. We are actors, dancers, musicians, seamstresses, carpenters, singers, electricians, and individuals who just offer willing pairs of hands to do anything from painting scenery to taking tickets at the door. Our compensation comes in the form of good times, camaraderie, and the satisfaction gained from learning new things, being part of a team, and staging a quality production. The Ridgefield Theater Barn is excited about its upcoming season—its 60th year! With cabaret seating at candlelit tables, we offer superior entertainment, so BYO refreshments and join us!

Pamme Jones

Executive director

Pamme came onboard as Executive Director in September 2017. Prior to being Executive Director, her service to the RTB included two years as President of the board of directors and two years as the box office manager. Her transition from a career in flowers and wedding/event planning into theater full time was natural.  As a lifelong performer, the marriage of flowers and theater as a profession was a rare blessing where two passions could be served. Pamme took a 16-year break from both her career and performing to be home in Ridgefield with her husband, raising their three children, Sophie, Evan and Grant.  She has been a performing member in the RTB resident Improv troupe since 2008. She and her husband John are not quite empty nesters, and Pamme continues to perform as an actor, improviser and singer on a regular basis. In 2019 she launched her one-woman cabaret show. Pamme is the event coordinator for and serves on the artistic advisory board of The Ridgefield Independent Film Festival, a member of Compassionate Ridgefield and the Ridgefield Arts Council, an active member of the Western Connecticut Cultural Alliance and was named to Ridgefield Magazine’s “Ridgefield’s Top 25 in 2019.” Her commitment to the RTB grows as an extension of her fierce belief in their mission and being able to incubate a space where tolerance, inclusion, education and growth are fostered through participation in live theater. To be able to do this in our beautiful theater in the culturally rich and idyllic town of Ridgefield, CT is icing on the cake.

Read Ridgefield’s HAMLETHUB interview with Pamme!

Board of Directors

Lisa Riggs Hobbs, MT-BC, LPCA
BOARD PRESIDENT

Lisa is a graduate of Ridgefield High School, Class of ’86. A musician with 45 years of experience, she has worked as a music director, vocal accompanist, school music teacher, private piano teacher, and performer. For six years, Lisa worked as a substitute music teacher, accompanist, and theater music director at St. Luke’s School in New Canaan. Lisa holds a BA in English Literature from Fairfield University, an MAT in Music, K-12 from Manhattanville College, and a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a specialization in  Music Therapy from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA. Lisa credits her experiences playing cello in the Ridgefield Youth Orchestra and the school musical “pit” orchestras under Ridgefield’s Music Man, Charles Spire, as seminal to her passion for the arts. Lisa has served on the boards of the First Presbyterian Nursery School of New Canaan, the United Way of New Canaan, the Summer Theater of New Canaan, and the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield  County. Lisa lives in New Canaan, CT with her husband Scott and children Jack, Charlie & Ellie.

Gregory McLaughlin

Board vice-president

Greg is Lead Senior Counsel and Market General Counsel for IBM’s US State & Local Government Market, where he manages and advises on transactions with US publicly owned entities outside of the Federal space. Greg has over 14 years as an IBM lawyer, as both transactional and litigation counsel.  As outside counsel before joining IBM –first at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, then at Wiggin and Dana LLP –Greg litigated or otherwise provided representation in a wide variety of substantive legal disciplines, ranging from antitrust and intellectual property to securities and white-collar criminal defense. Greg also clerked for Judge (and fmr. US Secretary of Homeland Security) Michael Chertoff on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

Paulette Layton

BOARD Treasurer

With over 25 years of experience in the corporate world, Paulette is a Project Manager and Certified Healthcare Constructor. She has an MA in Humanities from New York University and is a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Paulette has been on the board of the Ridgefield Theater Barn since 2009 and serving as the Vice President since 2011. However, her non-profit experience began in 1992 when she spent a year teaching community English classes in Transylvania. Upon her return to the states, she co-founded the Hungarian Hope Gala Ball (Reménység Bál), an annual fundraising event which she co-chaired for 10 years, that recognized local leaders of the Hungarian community and benefited educational organizations in regions abroad where Hungarians live as minorities. Paulette has resided in Ridgefield since 2012 and cherishes the sense of community the town offers, as well as the overwhelming cultural life, of which she is proud to be a part.

Rachel Lewis

Board Member

Rachel is a Human Resources professional in the Fairfield County area with special interests in training and development, talent management, DEI, and employee relations.  She holds a BA in Psychology and a MS in Human Resource Management.  Prior to HR, she worked in the clinical data management field for 6 years.  Rachel has always had a passion for theater starting in high school where she attended Regional Center for the Arts as a Musical Theater major, in addition to her hometown high school.  Post graduating high school, she became involved with Trumbull Youth Association which stages two summer musicals; one with students ages 13 through 21 and one with students in grades 5 through 8.  Once she aged out of the program, she turned to community theater to continue her passion and has created a wonderful theater family in the process.  Rachel has been involved in various capacities with several community theaters such as Curtain Call Inc, The Wilton Playshop, and of course, The Ridgefield Theater Barn.  She fell in love with the barn’s supportive culture and warm environment when she was cast in their production of Urinetown the Musical in 2018.  Rachel is thrilled to join the Board of Directors and contribute to the growth and mission of the Ridgefield Theater Barn.  Outside of work and theater, you may find Rachel volunteering with Stratford Animal Rescue Society assisting in the care of the animals housed in the Animal Control Facility.

Jennifer Engel

Board secretary 

Jennifer is a 20+ year veteran in the Market Research industry, and currently holds a position as SVP of Market Development, where she consults with clients on best-in-class marketing research programs. An avid theater-goer, she developed her passion during her childhood and has since instilled a similar enthusiasm to her children, both of whom are actively involved in the Barn’s theater programs. She moved to Ridgefield in 2012, moved by not only the beautiful New England aesthetic, but also by the sense of community and strong arts culture that it emanates. Jennifer holds a BA in Psychology and a minor in Spanish from Lehigh University, and could not be more thrilled to join the Board of Directors to serve her community and collaborate with this incredibly talented team at RTB.

Kat Ray

INTIMACY, INCLUSION, DIVERSITY & THEATER SAFETY ADVISOR

Katherine is an award-winning visual artist equally at home in theater, film and broadcast genres. She spent 15 Years as Coordinating Producer/Director for Disney, MGM, Lionsgate, and their subsidiaries, where she directed east coast, national, and international press junkets, behind the scenes, making of docs, and film premiers. She has worked with many great directors like Martin Scorsese, David Lynch, Spike Lee, John Waters, and Lloyd Kaufman.  For 11 years, Katherine was director of photography and camera operator for Bravo’s Inside The Actor’s Studio. Katherine’s experience in theater spans more than two decades. Her passion for actor’s advocacy and creating safe, accepting creative spaces led her to train to become a certified Intimacy Director. Katherine has worked as the Artistic Director for various festivals and indie events in NYC.  As the Co-Producing Artistic Director of Planet Connections, she has presented 207 productions, 75 Staged Readings, 47 films and 67 bands.  She has been recognized with many awards including an EMMY and multiple independent theater and film awards. Katherine is a member of the League of Professional Theater Women and a proud member of the Society of Directors and Choreographers Union.

Elizabeth Young

Artistic Committee Chair

With a very long history of involvement in theater, dating back to her role in kindergarten as Little Buttercup in HMS Pinafore to the present, Elizabeth has performed, written, and directed numerous pieces for the stage.  Elizabeth came to Connecticut by way of New York City, where she studied with Ginger Friedman, Warren Robertson, and The Riverside Shakespeare Company. Once children came along, she moved her family to CT, where she and her wonderful husband Kevin watched their four children, Lucy, Charlotte, Peter, and Daisy, grow up to be extraordinary people.  Elizabeth had an extensive career in nursing, working in many different capacities, including 20 years spent owning and operating a medical-legal consulting company.  She met the life altering Louisa Burns-Bisogno at WCSU and, under her tutelage, began to write plays, several of which have been produced at various festivals.  Elizabeth spent many years as the theater reviewer for the Newtown Bee, promoting community theater with each article. She also produced and hosted a local access TV show, “Cocktails and Curtain Calls,” with co-host Matt Austin. Many years were spent teaching theater at Garner Correctional Facility, as well as other correctional facilities in the state. This chapter of her journey will forever remain a deeply affecting part of her life. Presently she teaches theater at an assisted living facility where she has the great good fortune to see her students enjoy their later years experiencing and enjoying something they had never even considered.