Sep 01, 2009
Meet the people behind the scenes
Sean Kelley, Program Director
Sean Kelley was hired as the Historic Site’s first full-time employee in 1995. In 1997, Sean re-branded Eastern State’s Halloween event Terror Behind the Walls and introduced a revolutionary timed ticketing system. Eastern State’s ticketing system continues to be the model for haunted attractions around the country. Sean has spoken about Eastern State Penitentiary and the haunted attraction industry dozens of times including interviews on CNN, the History Channel, the Travel Channel, Montel Williams Show, and on NBC’s Today Show. Sean also trains tour guides at the historic site.
Brett Bertolino, Assistant Program Director
Brett Bertolino joined the Eastern State staff in 2000. Brett serves as the vice president for the International Association of Haunted Attractions (IAHA) and is the editor of the Haunted Attraction section of Tourist Attractions and Parks Magazine (TAP). In addition, he has led seminars on marketing, promotions, haunted attraction operations, and ticketing at various tradeshows including Transworld’s National Haunt and Attractions Show and at HAuNTcon. Brett also trains tour guides at the historic site.
Jason Ohlsen, Exhibit and Special Events Designer
Jason Ohlsen oversees all design and construction of Terror Behind the Walls. Jason joined the Eastern State team in 2004. Considered an innovator in creating optical and special effect illusions that blend with existing environments, his background in industrial design stimulates the creation of custom designed special effects and props for the haunted attraction. In addition, he has led seminars at various industry tradeshows.
Nathan Edmondson, Theatrical Director
Nathan Edmondson joined Terror Behind the Walls in 2002 as an attraction manager. In 2008, Nathan will undertake a newly created position, training and coaching the 140 actors that staff the event’s five haunted attractions. His theater experience includes performing with EgoPo Productions, Flashpoint Theatre Company, Once Upon a Nation (as Thomas Jefferson) and at the Arden Theater. In the Comedy Improv world, Nathan is a member of the popular troupe, the Rare Bird Show, and an instructor for the Philadelphia Improv Theater.
Kristen Phillips, Makeup Director
Kristen Phillips joined Terror Behind the Walls as part of the tech crew in 2004. In 2005, she became the Costume and Makeup Designer, leading the process of getting 140 actors ready for the show each night and now focuses on the performer’s elaborate makeup. Kristen’s experience includes designing and building masks, prosthetics, costumes, props, set pieces, and animatronics for theater and small film productions, costume shops, and television networks. She is also the owner of Safari Anomalous, a company that specializes in unique props, masks, and animatronics for the haunted attraction industry.
Aleksandra Svetlichnaya, Costume Director
Aleksandra Svetlichnaya joins Terror Behind the Walls this year as the new Costume Director. Aleksandra’s experience includes working at Michael Kors in New York City. At eModa Corporation in Philadelphia, she worked on marketing, PR, styling and art direction for photoshoots, including those with celebrity clients. Aleksandra also currently works exclusively with individual clients to create custom Dancesport costumes. She has a degree in Fashion Design from the Art Institute of Philadelphia.