MEET OUR STAFF & BOARD MEMBERS
Some board members have decided to stay anonymous
LAURA A. RIZZO ED.D.
Ms. Rizzo is the President of RSYTC and has been performing since the age of 5. After college she toured with the American Ballet Theatre, and toured in several Broadway shows. In addition to performing in numerous shows both on and off Broadway she did print work and commercials and was a member of SAG and Actors Equity Association. She has been teaching, directing and choreographing for youth for over 36 years. Ms. Rizzo holds a doctorate degree in ESOL from Northcentral University, and most recently received a third masters degree in Educational Leadership graduating summa cum laude from Western New Mexico University. She also holds 2 other masters degrees in Educational Theatre, and Educational Dance from NYU, and a bachelor's degree in Dance/Theatre from Bard College. She is a certified Dance and Theatre teacher in N.J. She has directed/choreographed over 190 shows for children in both the U.S. and abroad. She currently has several RSYTC students performing in Broadway shows, and several other former students who have gone on to do professional theatre, commercials, radio and television shows.
Board of Directors/
VP Sales & Marketing
Renata is a 20+ year publishing professional and the owner of Socialize Marketing Co. (marketing company for Rising Stars)
A published author of several books and magazines in the entertainment genre and a contributing writer to many entertainment publications.
As a teen Renata performed all over the east coast with a dance troupe and later taught ballroom dancing for 10 years with the Arthur Murray Dance Studio on 5th Avenue in NYC; where she taught celebrities like John Leguizamo and Antonio Banderas, before Dancing With the Stars ever existed!
Her forte is in sales, business development and marketing and she brings in a wealth of experience to Rising Stars.
George is a gifted and multifaceted musician who has played around the world accompanying and musically directing for Main Stage acts such as Jay and the Americans, The Drifters, Bobby Rydell and the Crystals to name a few.
He studied at The University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music. While in Vegas, he performed at Caesars Palace and toured with Tom Jones. In addition to performing, George was in the piano business for over twenty five years including a manager position with Steinway & Sons, where he opened their Paramus NJ location.
George is comfortable with many different musical formats, from “Cocktail Piano”, to Broadway musicals, with a swing big band, or his own group “GT EXPRESS”.
George enjoys playing piano, a Funky Hammond Organ or keyboards and, sings lead or background vocals.
George is always in style and in time playing tastefully whether it's at The Paris Inn restaurant or Lincoln Center.
This is George's first production with Rising Stars YTC.
Leonardo is a classical pianist from Wood-Ridge, New Jersey. He began accompanying singers when he was thirteen, and went on to attend New Jersey City
University. Leonardo has performed on the stages of Weill Recital Hall, Steinway Hall and more.
Currently, Leonardo teaches at Ridgefield Park Junior - Senior High School, where he directs the choirs.
WIlly Wonka Jr. & The Addams Family
Willy Wonka Jr.
Samantha started her stage career at the mere age of 10 and has performed in 18 shows so far, not counting our 3 upcoming summer musicals.
She has been part of the Rising Stars YTC family since 2018, having performed in Annie Jr. (Tessie), The Wizard of Oz (Scarecrow), Descendants (Mal),, Beauty & The Beast Jr. (Mrs. Potts) , Wonderland! (Stage Manager), Legally Blonde Jr. (Elle Woods), and Freaky Friday (Savannah).
Aside from RSYTC, Samantha has worked with other theatre groups and is a member of The PJ Players.
Samantha was crowned Miss Teen Hardyston 2022 and won Sussex Teen Arts 2023 for Small Theatre and went on to repesent the county at the NJ State Teen Arts Festival on May 30th.
Academically, Samantha also has the brains, being an academic scholarship winner, attending Pope John.
This is her second year as a Stage Manager with RSYTC and she is super excited!