Less Miserable Entertainment

OUR TEAM

JP Gedeon - Managing Director and Executive Producer

JP Gedeon

CEO and Executive Producer

JP Gedeon has led theatrical projects and live events around Canada, the United States, and Europe.  An award-winning producer, director and musical director, JP has led the updated presentation of several large-scale musicals including Rock of Ages, Music Man, Company, My Fair Lady, Chess, Little Mermaid, Mamma Mia, Addams Family, and The Wizard of Oz (a synergistic production of live theatre, symphonic orchestra, and film).

In a directorial capacity, he has worked with Marvin Hamlisch (Broadway), Rudy Tronto (Broadway), David Warrack (Canadian Music and Theatre Icon), Dennis Edinfield (Broadway), and Jeannette Lambermont (Stratford, Citadel).  On stage, he has performed with Nick Cordero, Chilina Kennedy, Louise Pitre, Ben Heppner and Juno award-winner Chantal Kreviazuk. In a musical capacity, JP has also served as artistic director and conductor for mainline orchestras including the  Rose Philharmonic, the Toronto Pops Orchestra and the Canada Pops Orchestra. Award-winning producing/directing favorites include Guys and Dolls (Penner), Company (Oslo), A Chorus Line (NJHP), A Little Night Music (MMT), La Cage aux Folles (National Tour), Jake’s Women (NAC), Urinetown (SLC), Mamma Mia (MTP), and productions of Into the Woods and Gypsy in Toronto.

In the live events arena, JP has acted as the producer and developer for many large scale festivals, including the Celebration of the Arts, the Rose Picnic, and Fire in the Sky, an explosive international fireworks competition set to music. 

Leveraging his doctorate in arts psychology, JP is a nationally recognized and sought-after thought leader in creativity, strategy, transformation, and corporate performance, having worked with dozens of Fortune 500 executive teams and government leaders in their work to create world-class operations, by combining art, science, and cutting-edge, outcome-based practice.

 

Sean Cheesman

Choreographer, Creative Director and Producer

Sean Cheesman is an internationally renowned Choreographer, Creative Director and Producer. Born in Trinidad and Tobago, raised in Calgary, Canada and trained in New York City, Sean’s career began at 17 when he appeared in Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’.

From there he has worked with some of the world’s top entertainers including Michael and Janet Jackson, Prince, TLC, Vanessa Williams, Carmen Electra, Tina Turner, Queen Latifah, Cher and Britney Spears. He has won 2 MTV Music Video Awards for choreography in Michael & Janet Jackson’s “Scream“ and Prince’s “Cream” videos. Sean also appeared and choreographed in the Warner Brothers film ‘The Bodyguard’ starring Whitney Houston.

Sean was one of the Producers and the Creative Choreographer for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s search for Dorothy on the TV show ‘Over the Rainbow’, airing in Canada. He is well known for his role as a Choreographer and judge on ‘Dirty Dancing: Time of your Life’, the popular T4 show ‘Musicool’ and he is a staple on ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ USA, Canada and UK.

He is also a Creative Director for the world renowned Swiss based Art On Ice, working with Jessie J, Nelly Furtado, Chaka Khan, Aloe Blacc, and many more.

Mark Camilleri - Music Director/Conductor/Orchestrator/Engineer/Producer

Mark Camilleri

Music Director/Conductor/Orchestrator/Engineer/Producer

Mark’s theatre credits include music directing/supervising world premieres of Juke Box Hero, Prom Queen, Pollyanna and Queen for a Day  and The Jazz Singer. Other theatre credits include The Toxic Avenger, The Lorax,  Cinderella, Funny Girl, Cats, High School Musical, West Side Story, Mamma Mia, and Bend It like Beckam.  Mark’s concert credits include music directing The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala, The Canadian Screen Actors Awards, The Canadian Tenors PBS Special, and Canada Eh! with Steve Patterson on CBC. Mark has played with Il Divo, Celine Dion, Sting, Eric Clapton, Seth MacFarland, Andrea Bocelli, Paul Anka, Wayne Newton, Sheryl Crow, Sarah McLachlan, David Foster, Annie Lennox, Audra McDonald, The Canadian Tenors, Herbie Hancock, The Priests, Dee Snider, Johnny Reid and Jim Cuddy. Recording/Producer credits include his own CD “Mark Camilleri and the CT Project” as well as recordings with Jeff Healey, Jason Priestly, The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Quartetto Gelatto, Marvin Hamlisch, Alan Thicke as well as various CDs for Somerset Entertainment.

Marnie Sugarman

Executive Producer – Film/Television/Digital

Marnie eats, breathes, and thinks content. Marnie started her career in Washington, DC covering the political scene for various U.S. network news affiliates before joining the Washington Bureau of ABC News’ 20/20. She returned to Canada for a job at CTV’s W5.

She has produced, directed, developed and cast numerous heavy hitting format series, (Four Weddings Canada, Slice/TLC), syndicated docu-dramas, Masterminds (CourtTV/History), Cold Blood (Global/Channel 5 UK) and competition shows, Masterchef (CTV), Cook’d (YTV), Cash Cab (Discovery), The Great Canadian Baking Show (CBC). She ran her own branded content and talent coaching service, helping to build the creative narrative for brands of major international companies and Public Relations firms. Marnie is known for creating a fun and supportive working environment where everyone can fully express their creativity and work together to produce top quality content.

Ivan Hutomo - Co Executive Producer

Ivan Hutomo

Co-Executive Producer – Film/Television/Digital

Ivan wears all the hats. Ivan is a producer / director / writer / editor / performer in the entertainment industry having worked on many productions and projects in the TV, Film and Digital world. He focuses on both creating and executing content, and developing talent and brands in various mediums. Coming from a background in film, he has worked alongside and produced/directed many family-based/kids productions such as YTV’s The Zone, The Zone Weekend & Big Fun Movies, Teletoon, TVOKids, The Nickelodeon’s Kids Choice Awards Preshow and the Mini Pop Kids. He also helped ”Backyard Beats” (TVOKids) garner a 2021 Canadian Screen Award nomination, and win a couple of awards at the 2021 Kidscreen Awards and the 2021 Youth Media Awards. He also helped develop MasterChef Canada (alongside Marnie) and has also produced content with many other entertainment companies such as Cineplex Entertainment, The Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival, The Canadian Football League, CBC (Over The Rainbow, Canadian Country Music Awards), Corus Entertainment, Rogers, and So You Think You Can Dance Canada.

Raymond Chandler - General Manager of Operations and Producer

Raymond Chandler

Producer and General Manager of Operations 

Raymond Chandler has enjoyed a career spanning decades in top-tier, commercial, professional theatre producing and theatrical general management. This experience includes premieres and performances of dozens of productions both on Broadway and Off-Broadway, including many years as the executive production manager at Radio City Music Hall. His work has also landed him in Regional Theatres in Canada, the United States, and Europe.  Raymond has toured international attractions throughout North America and Europe including theatrical companies, dance companies, contemporary artists, and opera companies. Raymond is a partner in Middle Kingdom Entertainment, a company devoted to producing large-scale projects with multi-national scope and sweep.

Laura Van Leest - Music Supervisor and Producer

Laura van Leest

Head of Marketing and Communications

As a 30 year music industry veteran, Laura has worked in London, England as a Professional Pianist/Educator, in Music Synchronization and Music Specialist for Post Production/TV/film and Marketer at Universal Music Group. Laura moved to Toronto in 2000-teaching music at the Royal Conservatory of Music and then a 17 yr + tenure at Universal Music Canada.

Laura held various positions including Head of PR / Head of Marketing for Classics, Director of Marketing and Adult Music/Soundtracks where she was responsible for the national success of her artists on a domestic and international roster including: Lady Gaga, Mariah Carey, Sting, Bryan Adams, Sarah McLachlan, Jann Arden, Peter Gabriel, Tori Kelly, Andrea Bocelli, Pavarotti, Ben Heppner, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Danny Elfman, Sarah Brightman, Ellie Goulding, The Weeknd, Deborah Cox, The Tenors, Rod Stewart, Nikki Yanofsky, Stephan Moccio, Stevie Wonder, Diana Krall, Lionel Richie to name a few as well as multi-platinum selling Movie Soundtracks, Broadway shows, Celtic Thunder, Celtic Woman, Mamma Mia, La La Land, 50 Shades of Grey Trilogy, Sex and The City, Les Misérables, Phantom, Sound of Music, West Side Story and more. Additionally, Marketing Director for Disney Music Group:  Selena Gomez, Miley Cyrus, Jonas Brothers, Zendaya and TV shows ‘Shake it Up’, ‘Beat Bugs’, ‘Phineas & Ferb’ and others.

Laura is CEO/Owner of Bellefair Artists, offering music consulting, artist management services, and event production. An award-winning event producer including PBS specials, concerts, charity events and virtual/live extravaganzas. Laura has performed and shared the stage with Andrea Bocelli, Hayley Westenra, The Tenors, Russell Watson, Donny Osmond among others. Currently holding Chair/Co-Chair positions for the Canadian Academy of Recording Sciences: Canada’s Junos, and is Chair of Humber Music Business course.

Gary Wilson - Production Manager - More Entertainment

Gary Wilson

Head of Production

Gary has used his creativity to become one of Canada’s foremost lighting and production designers.  With credits spanning concert touring, theatre, major motion pictures and world class special events, he has added producing and managing Broadway legend Colm Wilkinson, and creative collaboration with world-renown figure skater Kurt Browning to his impressive list of credits.  Gary’s unique understanding of technical production and talent management was utilized as a producer of the CBC hit reality Television Show “The Battle of the Blades” for 4 seasons.  Throughout a 15-year partnership with H.A.D. (Hungry At Dawn) Productions, Gary Wilson and Errol Reinart’s work has been seen worldwide with Lady Gaga, The Eagles, Bonnie Raitt, Stars on Ice and Colm Wilkinson.  

OUR ASSOCIATES

Middle Kingdom Entertainment

Producer

Middle Kingdom Entertainment Corporation (MKE) is an entertainment company founded by Michael Sulyma, Raymond Chandler and Dick Wong who collectively have decades of professional experience in producing and managing performing arts initiatives, film projects, and international tours. MKE represents, develops and produces pre-eminent entertainment offerings for global markets. Over the past 30 years, MKE’s partners have staged and toured productions in North America, South America, UK, SE Asia, Pacific Rim, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Japan, Korea, China, Ukraine and Russia. Produced projects include America’s Wonders, American Dance (created by Justin Timberlake and directed by Kenny Ortega), King Yu, an Asian tour of The Tenors, and the Opening Ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics.

Strut Entertainment Logo

Strut Entertainment

Strut Entertainment provides the highest quality public relations, marketing, social media, project management and event activation services. Strut opened for business over 17 years ago and is a national firm nestled in the heart of downtown Toronto. They have executed campaigns in primary, secondary and tertiary markets in Canada and New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago and Sydney, Australia. They are a boutique firm with 4 full time staff and have over 50 years of combined experience and expertise.

Larissa Mair - Casting Director - More Entertainment

Larissa Mair

Casting Director

She has been casting for over 20 years which has included movies, film, television, commercials, and theatre. She has always focused on inclusion and diversity in the casting process. She has discovered many fresh faces in the industry who have launched to great success. Currently, she just finished casting a Feature called “Hello Stranger” starring Simu Liu, Sam Worthington, and Jordana Brewster. She is currently casting for a new series called  “Shelved” (Bell Media), and Popularity Papers (YTV & BBC Studios). Presently on air, she cast the CBC series “Run The Burbs” and is casting Season 2. She will usually cast around 20 movies each year with various networks for Lifetime, Tubi and Discovery +.  She is also presently casting Season 3 of the hit series “The Hardy Boys“. Larissa recently finished casting projects such as ‘Kids in the Hall’ (Amazon), ‘Take Note’ (NBC Universal), ‘Hardy Boys’ (Season 2) (YTV/HULU), ‘Homeschooled’ (CBC), and an animation series called ‘Summer Memories’ (Family Channel). Previous credits include ‘SPIN’ (Disney+), ‘TallBoyz’ (Season 1 & 2) (CBC), ‘Odd Squad (5 years) (PBS & TVO), ‘Overlord and the Underwoods’ (Nickelodeon), ‘Lucas The Spider’ (Warner Brothers), ‘Locked Down’ (Season 1 & 2) (YouTube), ‘Ghostwriter’ (Season 1 & 2) (Apple +), ‘Endlings’ (2 seasons) (CBC/HULU), ‘Secret Society of Second Born Royals’ (Disney +), ‘Holly Hobbie’ (5 seasons) (Hulu/ American Greetings), ‘The CBC Winnipeg Comedy Festival (6 years),’ ‘Detention Adventure’ (3 seasons) (CBC), ‘Riviera‘ (Series, Toronto Casting) starring Julia Stiles, ‘Astronaut’ (Feature Film) starring Richard Dreyfuss and Colm Feore, ‘From The Vine’, ‘Milton’s Secret’ (Feature Film), starring Donald Sutherland, ‘Raising Expectations‘ (Series) starring Jason Priestly and Molly Ringwald, and ‘Degrassi: Next Class’ (Series), ‘Clara’ (Feature film) had its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, etc.  Larissa is thrilled to be casting ‘ROCK OF AGES’ with this incredible company and creative team.

Colleen Rush - Casting Associate - More Entertainment

Colleen Rush

Casting Associate

Colleen is the Associate & Assistant Manager at Larissa Mair Casting & Associates. Colleen has been working with Larissa for over 8 years and she has enjoyed every moment.
The last 8 years have shown her that Casting is where she wants to be; every day she enjoys overcoming the challenges of the casting world. Colleen works closely with Larissa’s clients alongside Larissa, making sure everything is in place so that every casting job runs efficiently. In 2022 Colleen is thrilled to have received three Co-casting Director credits for Popularity Paper S1,’ ‘Shelved S1,’ & ‘Run the Burbs S1.’
Colleen has an honors B.A. in Drama and English from Queen’s University. After graduating, Colleen’s first job in film and television was working on “The Amazing Race Canada” as a talent coordinator. That led to her start in casting where she landed her first job as a Casting Assistant at Milo Casting, where she learned the print and commercial casting world. From Milo Casting Colleen moved to work in Film and Television casting with Larissa Mair, and she has never looked back.

Colleen is thrilled to be working with such an inspiring Casting Director. She is excited to see what the future holds for this amazing Casting House; the possibilities are endless.

Jade Hesson - Casting Assistant - More Entertainment

Jade Hesson

Casting Assistant

been immersed in the performing arts for as long as she can remember, her career began working in Theatre for Young Audiences and Musical Theatre, where she was first introduced to Larissa. After graduating with an honors B.A. in Stage and Screen from the Queen’s University, Jade began building a career in the film and television industry. She worked at first as a reader and camera operator in the audition room, but then fell in love with the process. She was inspired by the talent we have in Toronto, both behind, and in front of the camera; she was eager to explore working in the entertainment environment.

Jade then exercised her travel bug. She worked as an entertainment host onboard Princess Cruises. While traveling to over 40 countries, Jade worked alongside a variety of entertainers from around the world. Jade is well versed in everything from being the face of the morning television show onboard to immersing guests in the evening’s production show lineup.

Jade is loves working with the casting team at LMC, she has passion for the craft is motivated to work on future projects with this impressive team!