Kristal Mallookis, started our parent company Mustard Lane in 2006. After moving from Colorado to NYC to pursue a career in dance, she sought out side gigs to help supplement income. What started out as side gigs soon became a full time job of staffing her creative artist friends on various events across the city. After over 14 years in the business, she now staffs “Laners” in 70+ markets. With a custom built database and a selective casting process, all staff come vetted, tried and true.
What is a “Laner” you might ask? A Laner is a team member of Mustard Lane, who captivates the main values of ML: ambitious, creative, genuine, vibrant and loyal. ML takes pride in providing professional, proficient, and positive staff to their clients. With a roster of 5,000+ top industry professionals, the ML team is able to increase consumer engagement, grow brand awareness and create an unforgettable experience at any event.
As the staff grew over the years, so did the Laner community. ML has always been highly supportive of the Laners and their true passions. The majority of the team in the major markets are actor/singer/dancer/artist types. In early 2018, ML began to hold monthly socials for the New York crew as a way of networking and getting to know each other “off the lane.” What initially started as raising money for local charities at these socials, turned into conversations on how to impact our own artistic community in a positive way.
Off The Lane’s goals are threefold. Outreach, Projects, and Continued Education.
Our first goal of the OTL community is giving back through outreach. The Mentorship Program is geared towards helping students transition to professional life in NYC. Our aim is to expand this program to L.A. and Chicago in Spring of 2021. Our Mentors, vetted theatre professionals, work with these students in digital sessions over the course of 12 weeks to help provide insight into daily life in a new city.
The idea behind our special projects stems from the love of the staff from our parent company, Mustard Lane. Through our special projects, we will continue to give back by providing additional support to individuals, schools and other non-profit organizations to help fulfill their need of creative and artistic guidance.
Lastly, we here at OTL feel it’s important to set yourself up as a business. Through frequent workshops, individual and group sessions, our aim is to educate our community and keep them one step ahead. Looking towards the future instead of working their way from paycheck to paycheck.
Originally from Littleton, Colorado, Kristal graduated from University of Northern Colorado and moved to NYC to pursue dance. Very soon after moving to the city, she started putting her entrepreneurship roots to use by working side gigs in between taking dance class and auditioning. The clients were immediately drawn to her professionalism and business acceum and began reaching out to her for more and more staff. Being able to find work for her actor/dancer/singer friends was exciting and fulfilling. Her vision was to create a transparent company with a safe and fun work environment, that was also timely with pay. With this idea in mind, “The Lane” was officially created in 2006 for creative professionals looking for some in-between gigs. Now, 13 years later, she is the CEO and founder of Mustard Lane, a nation-wide event staffing agency. This passion for business and helping people with survival jobs, while also supplying her clients with reliable and high quality staff has come to life. She is extremely excited to bring that same passion to Off The Lane with mentorship programs, workshops and community outreach.
Vice-President & Progam Director
A native of Cincinnati, OH, Jen graduated from Ball State University with a BA in Dance Performance and minor in Dance Education. She has nearly 25 years of teaching and mentoring experience that ranges from recreational to professional across the dance, theatre and corporate worlds. Now based in NYC, she still works as a director, choreographer, teacher and creative producer for events globally in addition to serving as the Casting & Recruitment Director for Off The Lane’s parent company, Mustard Lane. Jen is thrilled to be working as the Program Director for OTL and helping with the continued rollout of new and excited programs that benefit and empower new and young artists!
Lauren graduated from the University of Michigan in 2016 with a B.A. in English and a minor in Entrepreneurship. After a month long trip across Europe, she made the move to NYC and very quickly found a home at Mustard Lane. Lauren loves the vibrancy and the diversity that the city has to offer. She’s a huge foodie and is always on the hunt for the next great restaurant. Through the last three years at ML, she has juggled many hats at the company, she now runs the Marketing and Business Development for Mustard Lane. On a daily basis, she works to secure and nurture client relationships while finding new ways to get exposure for the company. Lauren is always up for a challenge and constantly pushes to grow in her career, she has even taken on the added excitement of acquiring her real estate license. She enjoys learning new aspects of business and is excited to bring those skills to Off The Lane!
Jillian graduated in 2008 from Ball State University with a BA in Musical Theatre. Having grown up in the theatre world, she was thrilled when she booked the National Tour of “Cats,” only two weeks after graduating college. Immediately following her contract, she made the big move to NYC. After 10 years in the city, she now calls herself a true New Yorker! Soon after her move to the Big Apple, she started working with Mustard Lane in between performing gigs. Now with 10 years under her belt with the company, she works full-time as the Admin & Social Director, as well as the Event Coordinator for Meaux Space, the event space where ML headquarters are located. She is passionate about helping create beautiful events, whether at Meaux Space, Mustard Lane or her own self-produced vocal shows around the city. She is thrilled to bring her knowledge of the “NYC streets” to new mentees of Off the Lane!
PR Manager & Mentorship Program Co-Chair
Originally from Michigan, Michael moved to Los Angeles in order to pursue a career in dance and performance. Shortly after the move, he began working for The Walt Disney Company and was introduced to volunteering with the “Disney VolunTEARS”. It was in that space that he discovered his love for helping people have a fun and exciting time, while doing what they could to make the world a better place. From working with different non-profits, helping develop and execute different volunteering efforts, to just having a good time, Michael feels most alive surrounded by community. Now calling New York City home, he is excited to use his previous experience and knowledge to help create another safe space for people looking to do good. As a hardworking and dedicated individual, he is incredibly passionate about not only helping people succeed, but helping people go above and beyond their own expectations. He is also passionate about anything, Ariana Grande…Just ask him!
Program Manager & Mentorship Program Co-Chair
Robyn Michele Frank is an NYC based actor, people person, and dog lover. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Pace University in the Pforzheimer Honors College with a BFA Musical Theatre major and an Arts and Entertainment Management minor in the Lubin School of Business. For over 10 years, both throughout her school years and post-graduation, she has assumed a variety of leadership roles including: peer leader, recruiter, student ambassador, brand ambassador, manager, and mentor. Robyn is honored to be a Co-Chair of the Mentorship Committee and to help others as she was helped herself.
Ayana Bey is an NYC based actress, singer, and voice over artist who is currently a mentor for Off The Lane’s Mentorship Program, as well as Co-Chair of the BOOST program committee. Throughout her 12 years in the business she has taught acting classes, workshops & mentors actors so they have the tools needed to sustain and blossom in the arts. She is also a proud alumni of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, where she received her MA in Classical Acting. Ayana is motivated to help and see artists develop their goals through the BOOST program.
Jillian Vitko is an NYC based performing artist with over 20 years of experience in education. She has previously worked with companies such as Big Brothers Big Sisters as a Mentor, The YMCA as a Teacher/Program Director & EBL Coaching as a Special Education Tutor. In addition to Co-Chairing the BOOST Program, she serves as a Mentor for Off The Lane’s Mentorship Program, where she helps graduating college seniors transition to life in NYC. As both an artist & educator, she is honored to have the opportunity to further guide creatives to follow their passions & achieve their goals