top of page

Meet the Team

Our team is comprised of industry professionals who have not only completed the Sketchworks education program themselves, but who are also working members of the mainstage ensemble. Follow them on social media to see what they're up to or catch them in a live show.


Julie Shaer

  • Instagram

Julie Shaer is a very proud co-owner of Sketchworks Comedy. A Native of Boston, Massachusetts, Julie has had many years of performing on stage as a singer, dancer and actor.

Although all her work as a performer got put on hold by entering the corporate world. She became lifeless and dull- a lost soul if you will…the world of theatre was calling her back and in 2005 that is just what she did. Julie fused her love for comedy and theatre and took a class with Sketchworks Comedy. That did it. She was sold. Julie has been a performer, instructor and director which brought her to co-ownership of this sketch comedy ship with Brian Troxell in 2015.

Julie really and truly believes in and is passionate about her sketch comedy team as they are not only talented, professional and FUNNY, but a tight knit family. Join us, will you?


Brian Troxell

  • Instagram

Brian has been a fan of sketch comedy since he was a little kid and was as excited as a little kid on Christmas morning when he discovered Sketchworks in 2009. He joined as an actor in 2010, directed his first show in 2013, and became an owner-producer in 2015.

Brian is an actor and voice artist in Atlanta. He has narrated over 150 audiobooks so far and is still cranking them out. He graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in computer science that he never uses anymore and has completely forgotten everything about.

Brian’s personal mantra is “#NeverProduce”.

Maria Liatis0504e.jpg

Maria Liatis
Education Director

  • Instagram

Maria first got involved with Sketchworks Comedy because her agents at People Store were heavily involved in the theatre (at the time, a couple of them were the owners and mainstage performers). She went to a performance to show her support, and fell in love. She immediately started taking classes, and even forced her acting coach to become her friend and roommate so that she could suck all the comedy knowledge out of her! Ok, the friendship was definitely two-sided.

Maria is an actress, coach, writer, and director in Atlanta, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor's degree in Theater. She was an acting coach at The Actor's Scene for 7 years, and has coached with Sketchworks for 7 years. You can also catch her in some of their mainstage shows.


Check her out on instagram @marialiatis, IMDB, Actor’s Access, Facebook, and Or, just come see her in a show, because isn’t that really what this is all about?!


John D. Babcock III
Head Writer

  • Instagram

John's comedy career began when he was a kid.  He and his friends would write and perform sketches for neighbors in his backyard. John joined Sketchworks Comedy in January 2017 as a cast member of LAUGHTER REHAB.

In addition to writing and performing for Sketchworks, John writes murder mystery plays for Murder, Mystery, and Mayhem at Petite Violette and the Mystery Café of Indianapolis.  He also contributed on-air scripts to Turner Classic Movies - having  written for the late Robert Osborne, and Ben Mankiewicz.  His play INDEPENDENT, about filmmaker John Cassavetes, received its world premiere at Essential Theatre's 2017 Summer Festival.

John is a loving and dedicated husband and father who drives a sensible car and has no pets.


Sanna Erica
Head Acting Coach

  • Instagram

Sanna has always had a special place in her heart for Sketch Comedy. Growing up watching Saturday Night Live, Mad TV, All That, The Amanda Show, The Muppet Show, and even Sesame Street made her a big fan of sketches early on. Sanna has been performing and creating comedy for years, and enjoys performing sketch consistently with Sketchworks.

Sanna started acting professionally when she was 14 years old. She has been coaching acting since 2011, soon after she made the move to Atlanta, GA. Sanna loves teaching actors of all ages, and considers it a huge privilege to be able to teach every week! Along with Sketchworks, Sanna teaches acting for the camera at The Actor’s Scene in the greater Atlanta area.

She holds her Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts from Azusa Pacific University, studying Theatre/Acting, Film, Screenwriting, and Animation. Sanna is currently working on her Master of Arts in Communication and Media Studies from Brenau University. Sanna’s previous credits include Alloy Entertainment, Coca-Cola, Tyler Perry Studios, Hulu, and Netflix. Sanna is a member of SAG-AFTRA in good standing and is represented by Houghton Talent.

Be sure to check out Sanna’s website at Sanna also hangs out on Instagram and YouTube - be sure to follow her and subscribe!


Kirsten Krehbiel
Acting Coach

  • Instagram

Kirsten Krehbiel was born and raised in small town Kansas. After graduating with a Performing Arts degree, she bounced around before settling down in Atlanta.

Kirsten did her master class with Sketchworks in 2016 and has done several shows with them since including: “From Russia with Sketch”, “Love, Family, Mars”, and “Vape”. Kirsten worked as the assistant teacher in this year's Sketchworks kids camps.

When she is not on stage, you can find her piddling around her house with her cat Dobby.


John Buisman
Acting Coach

  • Instagram

John has been doing sketch comedy since he was very young. He would invite friends over and pester them into creating a mini sketch show with him on the spot.

John pursued Theatre at the University of Georgia, where he acted in plays ranging from Thornton Wilder's Skin of Our Teeth to Sophie Treadwell's Machinal. In addition to his work with Sketchworks, John has participated at the Atlanta Fringe Festival as both actor and director.

Since graduating, John has lead summer camps for Sketchworks Education.

Tom von Dohlen Headshot 2.jpg

Tom von Dohlen
Editing & Acting Coach

  • Instagram

Tom originally hails from the hills of West Virginia, is a graduate of the University of Georgia, and is a current MFA candidate at SCAD. He's a face in the comedy community of Atlanta and is thrilled to be involved in another Sketchworks show! Recently he's competed with his improv team "Vibe Check" in the ATL Winter Improv League where they were finalists. He also plays Henry in "The Campaign", a D&D web series. Hope you enjoy the chuckles!


Matt Metzger
Improv Coach

  • Instagram

Matt Metzger's love for acting and improv began when he was a teen living in a small farm town in Ohio. Seeing his big sister perform with her college improv troupe inspired him to start a high school improv and drama club that he ran for three years.

At 17, he auditioned and received a grant to the New York Conservatory of Dramatic Arts for a summer program. Later that year, he auditioned, was accepted and given a full ride scholarship to the New York Film Academy for acting and improv.

While attending college, he performed regular improv shows around the NYC circuit and found himself interning for The Wooster Group as well as part time at UCB.

Matt has been teaching improv as well as the acting techniques Meisner, LaCoque, Stanislavski and Hagen off and on for 7 years now. Working with people in an open and creative environment for the goal of fun and art is a joy.

In the wonderful city of Atlanta, Matt continued to persue his dreams and passions performing improv all around the circuit, working in tv and film and as a regular sketch actor in Sketchworks Comedy. His previous credits include Halt & Catchfire, Manhunt: Unabomber, the Atlanta Winter Improv Olympics and more.

Currently, at several Cons or Renaissance Festival you can see his nerdtastic, thematic improv show 'Funyuns & Flagons'. You may also find him in his created web series 'The Campaign', which has released 2 Episodes and still in development going further.

bottom of page