Libby Pedersen- Executive Director

Libby holds a Bachelor’s degree from Columbia College Chicago in Theatre with an emphasis in performance and a concentration in Elementary Arts education. In her career on stage Libby appeared in more than 150 regional productions but it was off stage working with young artists and creating youth arts opportunities that helped IGNITE her path. Libby worked toward regional arts opportunities for youthserving as Youth Programs Coordinator at Stray Dog Theatre (while there creating Stray Pups Youth Theatre), founding Ignite Theatre Company and serving as its executive director. "I could not be more proud of the Community Ignite has helped create and the SPARKs who exemplify Ignite’s mission of Great People first, Great Performers second every day and in every direction." When she’s not focused on all things Ignite Libby resides in Shrewsbury with her filmmaker husband, Jorgen and their spoiled dog, Icky. 

 KIMBERLY KAVANAGH- Managing Director 

Kimberly’s desire to connect arts and community building led her right to Ignite’s front door! With a background in non-profits, the hospitality industry, and teaching, Kimberly is no stranger to supporting her community through arts opportunities. Home and abroad, volunteering in Columbia to brings arts to young performers who truly need a voice. Kimberly’s ever-changing hair color, signature style and love of binge watching “Pretty Little Lairs” keeps Ignite’s SPARKs on their toes and dancing in the streets! 

Christy Timberlake- Music Director/Voice Teacher

A native Kansas girl Christy made her way east for school (she holds a BS in Biology from St. Louis University) and in an effort to follow her heart and passion continued her education path to Webster University where she is currently pursuing a degree in Music Education. Recently Christy used her music background and appeared ad an 80’s music icon in Cook & Banks; a locally shot independent film which debuted at the 2015 St. Louis Independent Film Festival. Christy is a sugar fiend, part time model (look for her on Webster billboards around the city!) and active fan of Korean Pop music. Weather its costumes, children’s voices or antique tea sets Ms. Christy aims to make the world a more beautiful place. 

J. Keller Ryan- TECHNICAL DIRECTOR 

J. Keller Ryan received his Bachelor in Theatre Arts from Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. Since moving to the Saint Louis area in May he has worked with various theatre companies/groups in the area including the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as an electrician, and Harris-Stowe University as the Lighting and Sound Designer for their production of The Bluest Eye. He has also worked as a Scenic Designer for R-S Theatrics’ production of Animals Out of Paper. Keller also serves as technical director for the Kranzberg Arts Foundation. 

Jennifer Buchheit- Music Director/Accompanist 

Jennifer has played piano for musicals for over a decade. Some of her favorite shows include, Godspell, Music Man, and Hairspray. Jennifer lives in Edwardsville, Illinois with her husband and loving dog, Joan Rivers. Jennifer Buchheit plays and directs with several local theatre companies and colleges including Looking Glass Playhouse, Stray Dog Theatre, Stages St. Louis, and Lindenwood University-Belleville .


 

Guest Teachers

JENN KOEHNE CHOREOGRAPHER 

KENDRA MOORE- DANCE CAPTAIN/STAGE PRESENCE 

NATALIE KRIVOKUCA- SUMMER COUNSELOR