Having a highly-qualified, experienced and knowledgeable staff makes a big difference in how smoothly your production runs. That’s why, whether it’s our full-time production managers or our team of Chicago’s finest theatrical and event professionals, we are proud to hire and keep the best people possible.
Depending on the venue, projects may require union workers. Dan Kobayashi, Kobotech’s founder, director and Lead Production Manager, works closely with multiple Chicago unions to provide you with the best available stagehands and technicians for your event.
We offer exactly what you need: an experienced, knowledgeable, trustworthy, responsible and friendly workforce.
Founder, Director and Lead Production Manager- Daniel Kobayashi
Employee number 1. Kobayashi has lead his company through 3 decades of extraordinary events from the early days of Blues and Jazz Festival at the Petrillo Music Shell, through all City of Chicago Taste of Chicago events to the planning, staffing and opening of Chicago’s Millennium Park. With over 1000 events large and small under his belt, Kobayashi has a wealth of experience to offer clients.
Area of specialty: Film and video production; fishing.
Project Manager – Scott Ziemba
Years with Kobotech: 24 DePaul University Production Management graduate; Roosevelt University Production Manager 1998-2007. Oversees all project work for Kobotech clients City of Chicago and corporate clients.
Technical Director and Production Manager – John Imbrugia
Years with Kobotech: 26
Area of speciality: Technical direction for all Millennium Park events. Lighting design for all Kobotech clients
Production Manager – Kim Kozak
Years with Kobotech: 5
Audio and lighting specialist, international touring e Production Coordinator at I was the touring production manager for a magic show for 5 years. More of my work history is visible on my LinkedIn profile:https://www.linkedin.com/in/kim-kozak-4803aa18
Outside of work, I have operated the Mudqueens of Chicago since 2003. We are a women’s mud wrestling group that acts as a fundraiser for women based charities, most often, the Chicago Women’s Health Center. We hire local bands, have funny costumes, and run raffles. We have appeared on international travel shows, as well as MTV’s Real World.
Finance Director – Betsy Ingram
Years with Kobotech: 26
Area of speciality: Contract administration and oversight of The Grant Park Music Festival. Podcast development.
Business Management – Leigh Levine
Years with Kobotech: 1
Available for the following services:
- Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives in the Performing Arts
- All facets of Artistic Administration
- Performing Arts Education Programmes
- Season Programming with a specialty in music and dance
- Live-streaming and recording project management
- Complete arts personnel recruitment, placement and management.
Sound Engineer – Chris Willis
A 4 time Grammy award winning sound engineer, Chris Willis has been part of the Kobotech team for 16 years.
Chris has recorded professionally for most of Chicago’s classical music institutions, including: The Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Lyric Opera, The Grant Park Symphony, WFMT radio, Music of the Baroque, The Chicago Center for Contemporary Composition, Guarneri Hall, and many others. Summers are spent mixing the PA at Millennium Park for various classical music presentations.
While best known for his work in broadcasting, Chris has created his own recording label Bérto Records – to feature the work of some of Chicago’s best known classical artists that he has recorded.
Production Manager- Ellen Willet works year-round producing theatre and performance events throughout Chicago. She is a n Artistic Associate with Sideshow Theatre Company and Steep Theatre Company, an Associate Artist with Remy Bumppo Theatre, a Company Member with The Inconvenience, and a part of the stage management team for The Fly Honey Show and The Grelley Duvall Show. She has been a part of Kobotech since 2015. For fun, she plays hockey with the Evanston Tigers and fosters hound dogs with Houndsong Rescue
Production Manager – Skye Fort came to Kobotech in 2016 through a series of work friends and has worked mainly as the Assistant Production Manager for the Grant Park Music Festival. Skye has been working in theatre and production for over 10 years. She’s originally from New Mexico, where she got her bachelor’s degree in acting, but has been in Chicago for the past 8 years. In addition to working for Kobotech, Skye is the Production Manager for Physical Theatre Festival Chicago, a company member at Trap Door Theatre, and the bassist for the band Big Mermaid. Skye will soon be heading to Baltimore to pursue her MFA in theatre, but plans to spend her summer break back in Chicago with Kobotech.
Stage Manager – Peyton Boyle has been working on the Kobotech crew since the summer of 2017.Working first on the production crew at Northeastern Illinois University – where she got her bachelor’s degree in Computer Sciences. Peyton learned of Kobotech’s involvement in summer fests of Chicago. From there she went on to join the crew of Kobotech employees staffing the Aquatic Presentations at the Shedd Aquarium, working all positions from Camera Operator to Stage Manager. Her most recent position at Kobotech has been as Web Developer during the summer of 2020.