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Sidonie Garrett

Sidonie Garrett
Executive Artistic Director

Sidonie Garrett is the Executive Artistic Director of the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, where she directed Twelfth Night, The Taming of the Shrew, Hamlet (awarded Best Play by Pitch Magazine), Julius Caesar, Much Ado About Nothing, King Henry V, Romeo and Juliet, Othello, The Merry Wives of Windsor, King Richard III, Macbeth, our two-show repertory productions of Antony and Cleopatra and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, As You Like It and The Winter’s Tale.

Prior to joining the Festival, Sidonie worked as a freelance director. Her experience working with new plays took her to New York City, where she directed the off-off Broadway production of Thanatos. Sidonie also assistant directed the off-Broadway premiere of the interactive Aunt Chooch’s Birthday Party. Locally, she directed The Whale, I’ll Eat You Last, Other Desert Cities, The Motherf*&#%er With the Hat, Time Stands Still, In the Next Room: the vibrator play, Faith Healer, Rising Water, Iron Kisses, Retreat from Moscow, Omnium Gatherum, the world premiere of Thanatos, SubUrbia, The Waiting Room, Desert Holiday, Spinning Into Butter, SantaLand Diaries and co-directed Light/Damage with Cynthia Levin, at the Unicorn Theatre.

At The Coterie she directed The Macbeth Project: In Spite of Thunder, the U.S. premiere of After Juliet, Mr. A’s Amazing Maze Plays, Little House on the Prairie, Little House by the Shores of Silver Lake, Of Mice and Men, Playing for Time and co-directed The Hobbit. Sidonie directed Rose’s Dilemma and Greater Tuna for the American Heartland Theatre, Reckless and Too Clever By Half for UMKC’s Rotating Repertory, and co-directed Tony & Tina’s Wedding (Kansas City and St. Louis) for Fourth Wall Productions. She directed Jason Chanos as Hamlet, in the Kansas City Symphony’s Supremely Shakespeare concert, and was the stage director for four seasons of “Magic of Christmas” and How the Symphony Saved Christmas. Sidonie was the stage director for Kansas City Civic Opera’s productions of The Marriage of Figaro and Falstaff. In fall 2012, with Elizabeth Suh Lane she co-created and directed Play On! a collaboration of music and words and the following year, did the same with Marriage of True Minds. Sidonie directed the Festival’s first indoor production,The Merchant of Venice, in March 2015 and King Lear in summer 2015. This year she directs Twelfth Night.

Matt Rapport

Matt Rapport
Director of Education

Matt Rapport has been a performing arts teacher in and around Kansas City for over 20 years. His areas of expertise include Shakespeare, improvisation, and acting as well as physical skills including juggling, puppetry, and physical comedy. He has taught in a variety of settings including public schools, community centers, and art camps. In addition to having been the Festival’s lead teaching artist for the past 10 years, Matt has taught classes for the Coterie Theatre, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Accessible Arts, and Theatre For Young America.

Some of Matt’s more rewarding teaching experiences have been with underserved students, including work with the Shakespeare Festival at ReStart, a homeless shelter in Kansas City, MO, and with Kansas City Repertory Theatre at DeLaSalle and Hilltop, both high schools for adjudicated youths. Matt also taught adults with Down Syndrome in a program offered through Accessible Arts. Matt is himself a professional actor and musician with many local and regional credits. He was an original member of the cast of the Festival’s Shakespeare to Go! and co-created and co-directed the Festival’s Romeo and Juliet to Go! Matt has been seen on the Festival stage in productions of The Taming of the Shrew, Julius Caesar, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and As You Like It.

 

Elizabeth Cooper

Elizabeth Cooper
Director of Operations & Community Relations

Elizabeth Cooper has been with the Festival for six seasons, managing daytoday administrative matters, coordinating volunteer activities, and overseeing daily operations. Elizabeth grew up doing community theater in Kansas City and received her early acting training at the Kansas City Middle School of the Arts and Paseo Academy of Fine and Performing Arts. Elizabeth later trained at Neighborhood Playhouse Theatre in New York City and Park University. She completed her Master’s degree in Arts Administration at Drexel University in Philadelphia, where she interned with the Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia. 

Alyson Germinder

Alyson Germinder
Associate Producer

Alyson Germinder started with the Festival as an administrative intern in 2013 for As You Like It and has worked with the Festival in some way ever since. Alyson is the Associate Producer for the 25th Anniversary Season and is the Festival’s dramaturg. She served as the associate dramaturg for The Winter’s Tale, and as the dramaturg for King Lear, The Merchant of Venice, and last summer’s Twelfth Night. She completed her Master’s degree in Theatre at UMKC, where the focus of her Master’s thesis was on The Merchant of Venice and HASF’s first-ever indoor production.