KITTYCAT THOMPSON - Founder & Director
Ms.Thompson has been a teaching artist for over 25 years. She has educated in painting, text analysis, psychology in acting, improvisation, voice, movement, stage combat, Shakespeare History and playwriting. Her work has associated her with such award winning companies and schools as The California Shakespeare Theatre, Urban High School, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, Stage Write, Throckmorton Theatre, Berkeley High School, Marin Academy and Tamalpais High School.
She is an award winning AEA actress, the primary and focussed piece of her career involved in Shakespeare productions. Her professional theatre credits include The Orpheum, The Magic, Marin Theatre Company, San Francisco Playhouse, Center Rep, Central Works, Golden Thread, Theatreworks, Playground, Pacific Repertory Theatre, Carmel Shakespeare, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, California Shakespeare Theatre, and Marin Shakespeare Company.
Most importantly, she is a proud mother.
"In my heart of hearts..." (Hamlet), her primary focus is on utilizing Shakespeare's text as a vehicle for students and actors to develop their self esteem, multicultural empathy, emotional authenticity, and best still, in finding a richness in human capacity and imagination.
Kyle McReddie - Director of Combat
Kyle McReddie is a freelance fight choreographer native to the Bay Area, and is pleased to be working with such talented people with Shakespearience. Kyle has trained in stage combat with Dave Maier and Dueling Arts International for ten years, and been working in San Francisco as a freelance fight director and actor since 2012. He has recently directed violence for Vampire Christmas (Exit Theatre), Man of la Mancha (Custom Made), and She Kills Monsters (Lick-Wilmerding High). Kyle hopes that all of his students enjoy the swashbuckling and get to see Shakespeare in a new light.
Ashley McKenna - Administrative Associate
Ashley has worked in an administrative capacity with several small and mid-sized companies, from established firms to start ups. She is very pleased to be lending her skills to Shakespearience! Ashley comes from a family of teachers and as an actor herself, is very passionate about both education and theatre arts. As an actor she has performed with such local companies as: The Mountain Play Association, Impact Theatre, Marin Shakespeare Company, Novato Theatre Company, Spreckels Performing Arts Center and The 6th Street Playhouse.
Kristen Matia - Combat
Kristen is a certified Dueling Arts International Theatrical Combatant in: broadsword, rapier and dagger, single rapier, small sword, unarmed combat, and quarterstaff. She has been actively training in and assistant teaching stage combat since 2006. In recent years, Kristen has also been working as a freelance fight director for short films and at local theatre companies including: New Conservatory Theatre Center, Killing My Lobster, and Altarena Playhouse; and in 2019, she was nominated as a TBA Awards Finalist for Outstanding Fight Choreography. Outside of combat, Kristen is known for her producing work in underground efforts to bring artists together while giving back to the community. She is delighted to be working with Kitty and the participants at Shakespearience!
Danielle O'Dea - Senior Combat Consultant
Danielle is a New York City and Bay Area based fight director and stage combat instructor. Her Broadway credits include associate fight direction at the Atlantic Theatre Company on AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE, and at the Cort Theater on GRACE. Her Off-Broadway credits include work on BETHANY at New York City Center, MEDIEVAL PLAY at Signature Theater, GABRIEL at the Atlantic Theatre Company, & THAT FACE at Manhattan Theatre Club. Some of her Bay Area credits include choreography (including world premieres) at American Conservatory Theatre, TheatreWorks, San Francisco Opera, New Conservatory Theatre Company, & more. Danielle's work as an associate teacher began while she was still a student herself at New York University, assisting Fightmaster David Brimmer with his semester coursework and summer high school programs. Since then Danielle has enjoyed teaching stage combat with Marin Theatre Company, Piedmont High School, ACT's Youth Conservatory, and at PianoFight Theatrein San Francisco.Danielle is a BFA graduate from New York University, and has been with the Society of American Fight Directors for 10 years.
Jeff Wong - Film, Photography
Jeff is an artist in the fields of dance and visual art. As a break dancer, he competes throughout the global hip hop culture, representing world renown crews - The 808 Breakers and FloorGangz. While completing his Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology & Rehabilitation Sciences, Jeff amassed an excess of 200 performances with his local breaking crew performing in settings from theatre stages to stadiums. As a teacher, Jeff challenges students to discover and fine-tune their dedication, self-confidence, and ability to creatively interpret challenges (both physical and mental) through the practice of dance. His video work and stills can be seen through IG, @ark808.
Micah Watterson- Text, Combat
Micah is an actor and fight choreographer who worked in theatre and film for 12 years in New York and Los Angeles before moving to the Bay Area in 2018. Being a graduate of The American Musical and Dramatic Academy, Micah has been trained in several different weapon systems by Michael Chin, Carrie Brewer, Joseph Travers, Robert Hamilton, Mike Mahaffey, Charles Currier, and Timothy Brown. As a young actor combatant, he cut his teeth at the New York Renaissance Faire working under the direction of SAFD Fight Director Dan O’Driscoll for two seasons. During his time in LA, he is most noted for co-creating the one man show ROUGHLY HAMLET, which he performed to critical acclaim at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. Locally,
Micah keeps busy on the stage and has worked with several companies including Those Women Productions, Role Players Ensemble, and Custom Made Theatre Company to name a few. Shakespeare has the power to open hearts and minds like no other playwright in history. He is honored to be working for Shakespearience.
Julia McNeal - Advanced Acting Technique
An award-winning actress, Julia appeared in numerous plays and films in New York and Los Angeles before making the Bay Area her home. Local credits include: Magic Theatre, Aurora Theatre, SF Playhouse, Marin Theatre Company, and many others. She is a PlayGround company member.
Julia brings Meisner Technique, Linklater Voice Technique, Alexander and various other modalities to her students – giving them tools that work to bring authentic, full depth of presence to everything they do onstage. She has created a distinct technique for Playing Multiple Characters which she teaches at The Marsh Theatre and coaches privately. Julia is a Guest Artist at the internationally acclaimed CTE Theatre Conservatory at Tam High in Mill Valley. juliamcnealarts.com
Derek Fischer - Text, Combat
Derek has been an actor, teacher, and fight director in the bay area for 15 years. His focus is to encourage empathy, expressiveness, and foster creativity through Shakespeare words, and to impart what it means to be a generous actor. He has taught almost all theatrical disciplines including; stage combat, movement, commedia del arte, improv, auditioning, text analysis, and Shakespeare throughout the bay area and is currently the stage combat teacher at Redwood High School. As an actor he has worked at Berkley Rep, Townhall Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, Cutting Ball, Cal Shakes, Pianofight amongst others. Derek has had a focus in stage combat for the last ten years and has trained most recently with Dueling Arts International and holds a BA in theatre from Southern Oregon University. He is excited and honored to be lending his expertise to Shakespearience and looks forward to sharing his passion for story telling through Shakespeare’s words and iconic fight scenes.