Theatre Faculty

Full-time Faculty

Megan Burnett, B.S., M.F.A.
Director of Theatre Program, Assistant Professor

Megan holds a Bachelor of Science in Radio-TV-Film Production from Texas Christian University, and a Master of Fine Arts in Theatre from the University of Louisville. She received graduate theatre training at Oklahoma City University, working under famed opera and music theatre director Carveth Osterhaus before moving to Louisville and receiving her MFA in 1991. Megan was an English Speaking Union Teacher Scholar, taking the “Teaching Shakespeare through Performance” course at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London in 2004. She served as a Japan Fulbright Memorial Fund participant 2005, studying Kabuki, Noh and Bunraku as well as Japanese education practices in Tokyo and Hiroshima. Megan co-founded a theatre training school for adults: StageLab: Ongoing Training for Theatre Artists, and she was a co-founder and board member of The Pleiades Theatre Company. Ms Burnett received the Alice Lloyd College Campus Leadership and Excellence in Teaching Award in 2012. She is a 2014 recipient of a Post-Doctoral Faculty Fellowship from the Appalachian College Association.

Megan has worked in all aspects of radio, video production, film and theatre. She produced three radio drama productions for WMMT, a division of Appalshop and WWJD, Alice Lloyd College’s radio station. She directs for Jenny Wiley Theatre and serves on their board of directors. She works as a Voice and Text coach for area Shakespeare companies. She was a Narrator at the American Printing House for the Blind for several years. She has acted for professional theatre companies in Kentucky, Indiana, Florida, Texas and Oklahoma, and she also performs in her nationally touring production of a one-woman show, Shame the Devil! An Audience with Fanny Kemble.

Megan’s research interests include women in theatre, children’s theatre, Teaching Shakespeare through Performance, Kabuki theatre, and researching women to create plays about them. Right now she is researching Mattie Griffith Browne, a Kentucky Abolitionist and Suffragist with the goal of presenting a one-woman play about her in 2016. Megan is on the Speaker’s Bureau for the Kentucky Humanities Council and has given talks about Mattie Griffith Browne, as well as the Women of the Settlement Schools of Eastern Kentucky. Megan has presented papers and panels at the Southeastern Theatre Conference, Ohio Valley History Conference: Mattie Griffith Browne, Kentucky Abolitionist, Women of the Settlement Schools of Eastern Kentucky, JFK and the Power of Speech, Kentucky Theatre Association, and the Shakespeare in Contemporary Performance Symposium at Appalachian State University: 2014 ALC’s Caudill Players: A Model for Performing Shakespeare in Appalachia.

Most recently Megan published, produced and directed the play Alice Lloyd College: A Light Unto the Mountains. This was a devised script based on oral archives at ALC. National premiere in Washington, D.C. in 2013. Performed there and in Maryland, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina.

Dr. Zackary Ross has a Ph.D. in Theatre from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a master’s degree in Educational Theatre from New York University, and is an honors graduate of Lewis and Clark College’s theatre department in Portland, Oregon.

In addition to his experience as an educator, Zack is an active theatre artist. As a director, his most recent productions include Tony Kushner's adaptation of The Good Person of Szechwan, Tennessee Williams' short play Adam and Eve on a Ferry, John Webster's The Duchess of Malfi, Richard Greenberg's Three Days of Rain, and Charles L. Mee's Orestes 2.0. As and actor, he has appeared most recently in Frederick Knott's Wait Until Dark, The Neo-futurists Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, Christopher Durang's The Actor’s Nightmare, and Wendy Kesselman's adaptation of The Dairy of Anne Frank. His dramaturgy credits include The Illusion freely adapted from Pierre Corneille’s L’Illusion Comique by Tony Kushner, Iphigenia and Other Daughters by Ellen McLaughlin, and Buried Child by Sam Shepard.

Zack's research interests include theatrical adaptation, contemporary drama, theatre and social change, early modern drama, and trauma studies.

Full-time Staff

Ben Aguilar is Technical Director for the Wyatt Center For The Arts, including the Black Box and Amy Cralle Theaters at Bellarmine, as well as a faculty member in the Music Department. He specializes in live performance, digital composition, and live and studio recording and production for students majoring in both music technology, as well as coaching and facilitating all of Bellarmine’s Music Technology Ensembles. In addition to his academic career, Ben is also an in-demand recordist and live-sound engineer, having worked on productions with Bill Moyers’ Moyers and Company, This I Believe hosted by Bob Edwards, Kentucky Governor’s School For The Arts, the Youth Performing Arts School In Louisville, The Berry Center for Culture and Agriculture, and many more. Ben is also a co-founder and producer of the Outsized Influence Music Festival, which celebrates the Bellarmine artistic community.

Adjunct Faculty

Madison Cork

Madison Cork, President and Founder of Cork Communications, is a leading public speaking, storytelling, presentation, and communications coach, as well as an accomplished Actor and Director in professional Theatre, Film and Television. In addition to coaching and performance, Madison is a Professor of Communications, Acting, Stage Combat and Voice. She is the proud recipient of highly prestigious awards such as an Ovation, LA Drama Critic’s, Backstage Garland, Denver Critic’s, and a Robbie for her excellence in performance. Madison holds a Master of Fine Arts from The George Washington University in Classical Theatre Performance and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The University of Colorado in Acting and Directing. She is certified in Voice and Movement by Canada's National Voice Intensive as well as hand to hand combat and 7 weapons for stage combat by the Society of American Fight Directors.  She is proud member of the Screen Actors Guild and Actor's Equity.  Please visit to find out more about Madison and her work as a coach, speaker, and educator.

Kathi E.B. Ellis

Kathi E.B. Ellis is a professional theatre director, a member of the Lincoln Center and Chicago Director’s Labs, and an associate member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. She directs professionally across the country, and has been nominated for the South Florida Regional Theatre Carbonell Award (West Side Story and Jekyll and Hyde).   Kathi is co-Artistic Director and Resident Director of Looking for Lilith Theatre Company.  She is co-producer  and production director of Josephine Summerstage at Josephine Sculpture Park, a unique collaboration between visual and performing arts, for which she has directed their five annual productions. Kathi received a directing intership with Arena Stage, where she was assistant to Livui Cuilei (Ghosts).  She has also served as assistant director to Dennis Krausnick of Shakespeare and Company.  Kathi's primary research area is into the 19th century actress Frances Ann Drake who was headquartered in Kentucky and Cincinnati for much of her prolific career. Drake is frequently identified as the first great American tragedienne.  Kathi has presented papers about this actress at the Southeastern Theatre Conference and the Ohio Valley History Conference; her research has been supported by the Kentucky Foundation for Women. Kathi received her MFA in Directing from the University of Louisville, and was the first recipient of the Mary K. Bonsteel Tachau Award for Gender Equity, from UofL's Women's Center.

Andy Gaukel

ANDY GAUKEL - Originally from Kentucky, Gaukel has more than 20 years of experience working as a puppeteer, actor, and director in television, off-Broadway, and regional theatre. As an actor his credits include Dracula, A Christmas Carol and Peter and the Starcatcher (2016) at Actors Theatre of Louisville and Much Ado About Nothing and The Merry Wives of Windsor, among others, at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company where he was a Company Member 2009-2011. As a puppeteer he has toured with Madcap Puppets, Cincinnati, and performed in the world premiere of Paula Vogel's The Long Christmas Ride Home at Trinity Repertory Company and Long Wharf Theatre; Basil Twist's Symphonie Fantastique, New World Stages NYC and Twist Festival D.C., University of Maryland and Mabou Mines' development of La Davina Caricatura. Gaukel's original work Schweinehund and Leukos were presented by the Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta. Gaukel founded his own puppet touring company, The Wee Giant Puppet Company, in Glasgow, Scotland, which toured original works to schools and festivals. As an Educator specializing in theatre and puppetry, Gaukel has also worked with Tron Theatre Company, TAG Theatre Company, Theatre Nemo, Puppet Animation Scotland and Fife Council in Scotland and the Brooklyn Arts Exchange, Kentucky Science Center, Alliance Theatre, and The Children's Theatre of Cincinnati. In 2013, Gaukel undertook a Creation Residency at the Institut International de la Marionnette in Charleville-MéziÈres, France. He is a recipient of two Jim Henson Foundation grants to further develop his original work. Gaukel is a graduate of the University of Kentucky's Department of Theatre and has a Master in Fine Arts (M.F.A.) in Theatre from Trinity Rep in Providence, Rhode Island. In 2014, Gaukel devised and directed a new piece, Roob & Noob, combining object theatre and a live Rube Goldberg machine for the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta. In September 2015, Gaukel traveled back to France where he was invited to premiere his original work, Schweinehund, as part of Le Festival Mondial des Théâtres de Marionnettes in Charleville-Mézières.

Angela Miller

B.S. Psychology, Xavier University; M.S. Forensic Science, San Diego;  M.C.A. in Theatre (Directing) University of Tasmania, Australia. 

For a decade Angela enjoyed working at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego in a variety of capacities which ranged from backstage Run Crew to Assistant Directing.  She also directed with local groups such as Actors Alliance of San Diego, Plutonium Productions and Mo’olelo Performing Arts Theatre.

While obtaining her Master’s Degree in Australia, Angela taught at the University of Tasmania and Launceston College.  During this time she had the opportunity to direct for Mudlark Productions and CentrStage Theatre.  She also had the honor of being a guest speaker for the annual Drama Tasmania Teacher Conference.  She returned to Australia in 2012 as an Artist in Residence where she lectured and directed Terminus for CentrStage Theatre.

Locally, Angela had the pleasure of directing numerous productions.  Some of her favorites include The Complete Works of William Shakespeare at The Little Colonel Players, The Glass Mendacity, Sylvia and Proof for Louisville Repertory Company (LRC),  two seasons of the Finnegan Festival,  Bunbury Theatre’s Women on Fire, and numerous STAGE productions here at Bellarmine.  Angela is currently the Vice President for the Board of Directors of the Louisville Repertory Company.  She is also an active member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.  

Michelle Salerno is a Ph.D. candidate in Theatre at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her dissertation, “Playing American: Race and Citizenship in American Theatre and Performance during the Great War, 1917-1919,″ examines the role of theatre and performance in the crafting and circulation of racial stereotypes, assumptions, images, and idealizations on the home front. Her research focuses the influence of performance on American cultural identity, particularly during times of national or communal conflict. She has worked as a director, dramaturge, producer, playwright, and actress. Michelle received her M.A from Illinois and has graduate minors in Gender and Women's Studies and European Union Studies.

Takayla Williams

B.F.A, Theatre Arts, Clark Atlanta University; M.F.A, Acting, University of Louisville

Scholarly Interests: Actor Training and Methodology, Directing, On-Camera Acting and Directing, Playwriting and Screenwriting, Mask Work, Stage Combat, Medieval Script adaptation.  

Takayla has had the privilege of participating in Horizon Theatre’s Young Playwrights’ Festival as well as The National Black Theatre Festival’s Collegiate Playwrights competition.  She has also worked with Atlanta Street Theatre, in Atlanta GA, performing in their play, Little Boy Blue. She has directed plays at Clark Atlanta University, such as, Go Ask Alice and The Stoop to name a few. She also staged managed Topdog/Underdog.  She remounted The Stoop at the University of Louisville and premiered her play Where Do We Go From Here.

Bellarmine University | 2001 Newburg Rd, Louisville KY, 40205 | 502.272.8131 | 800.274.4723

Copyright 2011, All rights reserved