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Meet the Faculty

Anna Kimmell, Director of Education  
Anna Kimmell joins the community of Little Rock after serving as Director of Education at Mill Mountain Theatre in Roanoke, Virginia for three years. There she strengthened community partnerships, planned and implemented outreach education, directed and choreographed black box, main stage, and touring productions, and developed a college apprenticeship program; all while teaching a rigorous theatre conservatory schedule and serving as an adjunct professor at Hollins University. Anna teaches varying courses of study, including Musical Theatre, Acting, Tap, Theatre Dance, Acting for the Camera, Theatre Renderings and Audition Prep, to name a few. A graduate of Elon University with a BFA in Music Theatre, as an actress, Anna has performed in touring and regional companies throughout the United States including NC's Flat Rock Playhouse, RI's Theatre by the Sea, CO's Lake Dillon Theatre, FL's Show Palace, and GA's Georgia Shakespeare, Theatre in the Square, and Theatre of the Stars. Favorite credits include the National Tour of the Wizard of OZ, Peggy Sawyer in 42nd Street, Judy in White Christmas, Amber in Hairspray, Olivia in Illyria: The 12th Night Musical, Antonia in Man of La Mancha, Wendy in Peter Pan, and Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors, as well as multiple appearances in commercials and television. Anna’s vision for the future of The Rep’s Education Department is to engage Arkansas students of all ages, encouraging expression, collaboration, creative problem-solving, reflection, and a deeper community connection through involvement in theatre arts. The mission will be manifested through a series of new programs, including student matinees, master classes and workshops, year-round classes, summer programming, pop-up special guest artists, school residencies, and more. 

Cliff Baker, Teaching Artist
Cliff Baker is the Founding Director of Arkansas Repertory Theatre. Baker has directed more than 200 productions, including more than 30 new plays at The Rep and at theatres from coast to coast, as well as internationally. He has received numerous awards, including the Governor’s Award for Outstanding Individual Artist and the 1999 Arkansas Arts Council Award for Lifetime Achievement. He is a member of The Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers and the Dramatist Guild. 

Andrew Cooke, Teaching Artist
Broadway: Aspects of Love; Sweeney Todd (first revival). Off-Broadway: Company; The Night They Invented Champagne; The World Goes ‘Round, Sweeney Todd. Guthrie Theater: The Music Man; My Fair Lady; Roman Holiday; Caroline, or Change; The Secret Fall of Constance Wilde; Jane Eyre (composer); 1776; She Loves Me; Death of a Salesman; Pirates of Penzance; Night of the Iguana (composer); To Fool the Eye (composer); Wintertime; Merrily We Roll Along;  Sweeney Todd. Chanhassen Dinner Theatres (Resident Music Director): Camelot; Beauty and the Beast; Mary Poppins; Hello, Dolly!; The Little Mermaid; Fiddler on the Roof; Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat; Our Hometown Christmas Pageant (composer); Bye, Bye, Birdie!; Hairspray; Plaid Tidings; Forever Plaid; Jesus Christ Superstar; All Shook Up; Footloose; Another Night Before Christmas. Children’s Theatre Company: The Wizard of Oz; Cinderella; Bert & Ernie, Goodnight!; Madeline and the Gypsies; Seussical; How The Grinch Stole Christmas; Aladdin; A Year With Frog And Toad; Honk!. The History Theatre: Queens of Burlesque. Mixed Blood Theatre: The Pajama Game. Theater Latte’ Da: Floyd Collins. Other regional: King And I; Oklahoma!; West Side Story; Guys And Dolls; Carnival. Andrew has also been active in the world of cabaret since 1980, music directing, arranging, composing and performing at NYC venues such as Don’t Tell Mama, Eighty-Eights, Danny’s Skylight Room, The Triad, The Duplex, and Rainbow and Stars at Rockefeller Center. He was a member of the faculty for the University of Minnesota / Guthrie Theater’s B.F.A. Actor Training Program, and he is a private vocal coach and singing teacher. He is an honors graduate of the Indiana University School of Music, and he did post-graduate studies at the University of Bonn and the Cologne Academy of Music in Germany.

Mark Binns, Teaching Artist
Mark is a Little Rock-based musical director, composer, arranger, pianist, singer, and teacher. He has worked extensively at the Rep for the last seven seasons, both on the main stage and in education. Mark has been the Musical Director for numerous shows at the Rep including White Christmas, Les Miserables, Memphis, Elf, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Little Mermaid, Peter and the Starcatcher, and The Bridges of Madison County, and Sister Act. He has also composed original music for several past Rep productions, including Wait Until Dark, Macbeth, and A Christmas Story. In Education at the Rep, Mark has served as Musical Director for the past five summers. Other regional credits as Musical Director include Hairspray, Oliver!, Cinderella, Pippin, The Last Five Years, Fiddler on the Roof, Dreamgirls, West Side Story, La Cage Aux Folles, Sweeney Todd, Avenue Q, and The Music Man. Mark has written and/or arranged hundreds of pieces of music that have been used at the University of Central Arkansas, Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, and other places. Mark is a vocal coach to an amazing group of theatre kids. He has performed all over the world, from Little Rock to New York to Bulgaria, and you can sometimes find him performing at local venues.

Katherine Silverman, Education Associate 

Katherine is thrilled to be a part of The Rep’s Education Department. Katherine is a Director, Teaching Artist and a proud member of Actor's Equity Association with a variety of theatrical accomplishments. Before returning to Little Rock, she lived in Los Angeles where she worked with Independent Shakespeare Company's Free Shakespeare Festival on Hamlet, The Merry Wives of Windsor, The Comedy of Errors, A Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like It, The Winter's Tale, and Love's Labour's Lost, to name a few. She was the Assistant Director for Backyard, an original play by Mickey Birnbaum, which was nominated in the 2014 L.A. Ovation Awards for Best Director, Best Actor and won Best Fight Choreography. Katherine has trained many young actors to pursue joy in their journey as an artist; she specializes in Fitzmaurice Voicework, Shakespeare and Viewpoints. Katherine received her B.A. in Theatre from California State University and is excited to share her passion for the arts with The Rep's Young Artists and our great community.

Emily P. Faith, Education Intern

Emily P. Faith is an Actor, Educator and Director serving as the Education Intern for the Arkansas Repertory Theatre. A native Arkansan, Emily began her love for theatre on The Rep’s stage as a young artist and went on to receive her B.F.A in Acting from Lipscomb University. Emily’s Nashville credits include Rabbit Hole, 100 Saints You Should Know, The Pajama Game, Hairspray, Singin’ in the Rain and the world premiere of Exposure, to name a few. She was the 2014 recipient of “Most Promising Actor” Nashville First Night Awards. Emily has performed in theaters across the country, most recently in Don’t Knock Opportunity at Central Square Theatre in Boston, MA. While Emily is a performer at heart, she is a passionate theatre educator. Recent teaching projects include directing The Lion King kids and The Jungle Book kids with the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, and working as an outreach educator for the Watertown Children’s Theatre in Boston, MA. With extensive training in Laban and Meisner techniques, Emily is thrilled to share her knowledge and joy for the arts with Arkansas aspiring performers!

Verda Davenport-Booher, Teaching Artist 
As an active member of the arts community in Little Rock, Verda is an actor for stage and film, a costumer designer, arts educator, vocalist, and arts activist. Her design experience led her to educational tours with Myth, Delta Spirit, and Lunatics, Lovers and Poets. Accomplished in costume design she worked on The Foreigner, West Side Story, Dancing at Lughnasa, Machinal and many others. She also is costume mistress for AR Ballet. Her performance experience includes many regional and national films, commercials, and voice-overs such as The Crucible, 21 Grams, The Rainmaker, and Doubt. However, Verda’s true love is in educating and promoting the arts and through the years has taught workshops and classes.

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