Teaching Assistants and Accompanists

We are extremely pleased to introduce you to our summer teaching assistants and accompanists! Our TA's are long-time kidsActing students who return during the summer to be assistants in our summer camps! Our accompanists have been selected from some of the best pianists in Central Texas! 

PHOEBE ANDERSON

Teaching Assistant

Phoebe has been in numerous plays at kidsActing and is excited to work as a teacher's assistant again this summer!

ASHLEY BENEDICT

Teaching Assistant

Ashley Benedict is a proud kidsActing veteran. She has performed in a total of 14 shows with kidsActing and 5 were summer camps. She is also a member of the CST Elite Ensemble Ashley can't wait to meet the summer camp students and hopes that everybody has a great time this summer!

KALI BISSANTI

Teaching Assistant

Kali Bissanti is super excited to be working with kidsActing for the first time this summer! She has a passion for theatre and loves working with costumes, and children, so kidsActing is the perfect opportunity. She can't wait to get to know the kidsActing family, and is so excited for what's to come!

SAVANNA BLAU

Volunteer Aide


 

SOFIA BUNTZ

Teaching Assistant

Sofia is a 10th grader at LASA High School. She has attended summer camps at kidsActing since she was very young. She loves to perform and act. This is her first summer working at kidsActing! 

CLARISSA CASTRO

Teaching Assistant

LILY CAUDLE

Teaching Assistant

Lily loves theater and has done 3 shows with kids acting -  two musicals, one play. She loves working with kids, and has been doing theater since she was little. Her favorite musicals are Hamilton and Anastasia.

LORI CHEN

Teaching Assistant

Lori has been with kidsActing ever since the Wizard of Oz. She loves theatre and is excited to work with and share her love of theatre with the students!

HANNA CHUNG

Accompanist

A native of South Korea, Hanna Chung is a collaborative pianist currently based in Austin. An avid pianist of chamber music and ensemble, Hanna has collaborated with chamber groups, choirs, wind ensembles, and orchestras. In January of 2019, she appeared on stage in the world premiere wind ensemble transcription of John Adam’s Saxophone Concerto with Stephen Page in January 2019. Hanna has also been seen at the Aspen Music Festival, Brevard Music Festival, and the Bay View Music Festival. 

Hanna holds Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Collaborative Piano from UT with a teaching assistantship in Collaborative Piano. She also holds a Master of Music degree in Piano Accompanying and Chamber Music from Eastman School of Music.

LUCY COLANGELO

Teaching Assistant

Lucy Colangelo is a rising sophomore at Westlake High School. In addition to being in choir at school, Lucy is a member of the Center Stage Theatre Elite Ensemble at kidsActing. She looks forward to a summer of fun and exciting camps!!

SETH ELLINGTON

Teaching Assistant

Seth Ellington has enjoyed being a student at kidsActing for much of his life and is excited to continue as a teacher's assistant and give back to the organization. He hopes you enjoy the shows here as much as he does and thinks dogs are really cool.

EMI FIFER

Teaching Assistant

Emi Fifer has been in six productions at KidsActing since discovering her love for theatre in 2016. A freshman at NYOS High School, Emi plays volleyball, piano, and loves to go swimming with their friends. Emi is a member of the Elite Ensemble at CST, as well as Elite Show Choir. She hopes everyone can experience the joy of KidsActing, as it really is a magical place.

ARWEN FREDERIKSON

Teaching Assistant

Arwen Frederiksen just experienced her first year of kidsActing and is having so much fun! She is so excited to be working at kidsActing this summer! She recently enjoyed her first year in the Elite Ensemble and can’t wait to share her love of theatre with other students!

MORGAN FRANCIS

Teaching Assistant

Morgan Francis is a Senior at Vista Ridge High School and has been involved with kidsActing for seven years. She plans to study Musical Theatre in college. 

GREG GIACONA

Accompanist

Greg Giacona was born in Galveston County in 1964. The son of an Italian immigrant and a native Texan, he grew up in a very diverse household, musically and otherwise!   At age 5, he began piano lessons and immediately fell in love with music.


In 2016, Greg and his family relocated to Austin where he continues to perform, instruct and lead worship as pianist at LifeAustin church in southwest Austin.   Greg also has 35 weekly private piano students, 24 of which are seen at Regents School of Austin.

SAMI GREISDORF

Teaching Assistant

LAUREL HANSON

Teaching Assistant

 I am a graduating senior at NYOS Charter School. After five years in my school's drama club, I worked as a student stage manager at my first kidsActing show (Les Misérables) this year!

GINA HINOJOSA

Teaching Assistant

SUSIE IANNITELLI

Teaching Assistant

Susie Iannitelli loves kidsActing!! She most recently was the Sultan in Aladdin! When not wearing a mustache, Susie can be found telling stories about one-legged Hungarian boys or tomatoes or eating pancakes. You might also hear her ukulele from miles around. If none of the above applies, she is probably re-re-reading the Harry Potter books.

DYLAN KENNEDY

Teaching Assistant

HARPER KINGSLAND

Teaching Assistant

ELLA KNUDSEN

Teaching Assistant

SERENNA MCPHAIL

Teaching Assistant

SERENNA MCPHAIL is excited to start being more involved at KidsActing. She has been in shows with kidsActing that include CINDERELLA and ALADDIN. In her free time, she enjoys improving her singing, reading, swimming, and hanging out with her friends. She is looking forward to doing lots of theater in her upcoming years.
 

CAROLINE MULLINS

Teaching Assistant

PARKER MILLER

Teaching Assistant

LARA MURRAY-PALMA

Teaching Assistant

 Lara Murray Palma has been in many theater shows and loves performing! She was awarded Best Teenage Actor of the Year by IMTA in Los Angeles 2018. In her free time, Lara loves dancing Ballet, writing and playing with her tortoise Pickles.

AUSTIN NELSON

Teaching Assistant

Musical theater is a passion of Austin's. He has participated in musicals for 7 years playing roles such as Buddy the Elf, Shrek, Aladdin, and most recently Marius, in Les Misérables. When he's not on stage, Austin plays football and basketball for his school.  He sings for fun with his friends, as well as in the school choir and his church’s praise and worship team.  

ANTHONY NEUENDORFF

Teaching Assistant

Anthony has been part of kidsActing productions for over five years, performing in seven kidsActing musicals overall, five of those being Elite Ensemble productions. Anthony loves working with young actors and can't wait to be able to lead these kiddos.

BARBARA O'BRIEN

Accompanist

Barbara O'Brien has a B.S. in Child and Family Studies from Southern Illinois University and an M.A. in Educational Psychology from The University of Texas at Austin. She has been a licensed professional counselor since 1993 and has a private counseling practice. Barbara has been a singer and pianist since childhood, participating in church, college, community, and professional choirs both in Phoenix, AZ and Austin, TX, most notably the Grammy-winning Phoenix Choral and Conspirare Symphonic Chorus.

While at UT, Barbara was a member of Chamber Singers, accompanied  other choirs, and toured around the country and abroad with the Morris Beachy alumni singers. During the early 1980s, Barbara participated in the pit orchestras for several Zilker Hillside Musical productions. 

SAMANTHA PEDERSEN

Teaching Assistant

ABI PITHER

Teaching Assistant

Abi has been performing since the age of seven and has been with kidsActing for the past three years. She is going into freshman year of high school at Austin High and has enjoyed being a part of CSTEE and Elite Show Choir.

TONI SIENA

Teaching Assistant

Toni is a theater student at California State University Northridge. She has been a part of kidsActing's community for many years and is excited to be a teaching assistant this summer.

KINSLEY SMITHERMAN

Teaching Assistant

Kinsley Smitherman is a sophomore high school theatre student with a great passion for theatre and the arts. She has been in several plays with kids acting Including; Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged, and Clue. She was also recently in the musical Newsies. She loves sharing her knowledge of theatre with the youth of today.

SYDNEY SMITHERMAN

Teaching Assistant

This is Sydney's third year working with kidsActing. Sydney has performed in kidsActing advanced shows such as Legally Blonde and Chicago. Recently she played Rizzo in her high school performance of Grease.

MEREDITH SOBEL

Accompanist

Meredith Sobel is an up-and-coming pianist from La Grange, Texas. Having completed one year as a piano major at Blinn Community College, she is looking to expand her horizons in the entertainment industry, including film. In her spare time, she enjoys creating art, singing, and aspires to travel the United States with her work.

SYDNEY SOLBERG

Teaching Assistant

Sydney Solberg is overjoyed to be sharing her love of theatre with other kidsActing students this summer! Sydney found a second home with kidsActing when she did her first production in fourth grade. She is now a part of the Elite Ensemble and Elite Show Choir.

 

Sydney was recently Madame De La Grande Bouche in Beauty and the Beast and had an absolute blast. When not on stage, you can find her avoiding sports at all costs, petting dogs in public areas, and/or eating excessive amounts of chips and queso.

JORDAN STEVENSON

Teaching Assistant

Jordan Stevenson is so excited to work at kidsActing this summer and can’t wait to meet all the kids.

VIVIAN STEWART

Volunteer Aide

Vivian is a student at the Cedar Park Charter Academy.  She loves acting, cosplay, musicals, and YouTube.

AUGUSTIN UGARTE

Teaching Assistant

JULIANNE UHEREK

Teaching Assistant

Experienced with over 13 years of training in different genres of dance, gymnastics, and theatre. Listed on Academic Honor Roll and enjoys dance, cheerleading, and theatre. Dance Officer on schools dance team 2017-2018, and musical theatre choreographer 2017-2018.

ZOE WALGREN

Teaching Assistant

Zoe Walgren joined her first show at kidsActing in the summer of 2016, joined the Elite Ensemble that fall, and loved every moment. Aside from theatre, Zoe loves singing jazz. She is so excited to work at kidsActing this summer.

AUBREY WALLING

Teaching Assistant

Since completing her bachelor’s in drama/television/film and moving back to the Austin area in 2016, Aubrey has divided her time between working as a singer/actor/model and immersing herself in theatre education. She has obtained various credits in film, television, print, web, and stage performances. She has also enjoyed working behind the scenes in the Austin film industry as an associate producer and production assistant.

 

As far as teaching goes, Aubrey has directed shows, and managed costumes at Arts Avenue for Theatre and Dance, taught “Celebrating the Arts” Summer session with Foundation Communities, and most recently worked as a Teaching Artist with Creative Action teaching film and theater at several Austin ISD schools. 

 

For fun, Aubrey makes jewelry from avocado seeds and has a YouTube channel where she posts covers and music videos. Aubrey is very excited about the opportunity to work with kidsActing this summer!

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EMILY WARKENTIN

Accompanist

Emily has been involved with musical theatre since early childhood—memorable roles include Alice Beineke from The Addams Family and a jellyfish from The Little Mermaid.  She is classically trained in piano and is currently studying Music and Psychology at Trinity University in San Antonio. Emily recently played for a production of Tick, Tick, Boom! and will be accompanying The Mystery of Edwin Drood this fall. She loves collaborating with composers and having spontaneous improv sessions.

SARAH WEBB

Teaching Assistant

Sarah Webb is a sophomore at Stony Point High School. She enjoys choir, dance, and musical theater. Some of her favorite shows are Heathers the Musical, Little Shop of Horrors, Hamilton, and Shrek the Musical.

RACHEL WOLBRUECK

Teaching Assistant

Rachel has been involved with kidsActing for more than 5 years and has grown so much throughout her experiences here! She is thrilled to be sharing the kidsActing experience with this summer’s campers!

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