Barbie Sheppard

Fundamentals/Musical Theater/Homeschool Instructor

Barbie found her love of the stage at age 3 and has been dancing, performing, and directing ever since. Entering her fourth decade of theatrical and dance experience, Barbie appreciates sharing her love of the art for those on stage, behind the scenes, and in theatre leadership.

Education:
Barbie’s mom started her dancing at age three in hopes of her not being shy (although, this was not going to be an issue). She studied tap, ballet, and jazz through her elementary school years. In middle school, Barbie began acting, auditioning for, and being accepted into the school’s performing arts group under the direction of Earl Reece, Jr (a later namesake of the Cobb County Center for Excellence in the Performing Arts at Pebblebrook High School, Cobb County, GA). She continued acting and dancing competitively throughout high school performing in You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown, A Night on Broadway, in pageants, and in dance at Showstopper. With a focus in Directing and Stage Management, Barbie attended LaGrange College (Troup County, GA) earning a Bachelors of Arts in Theatre Arts and an Associates of Arts in Business Administration. While at LaGrange College, Barbie did local radio voiceover work, focused on theatre management, stage combat, and performed in The Adventures of Maid Marian (an original full-length musical), and The Sound of Music. She was Stage Manager of On the Verge, A Christmas Dance, Hedda Gabler, and Fiddler on the Roof under the direction of Dr Steven Earl-Edwards (Award Winning Director and Actor in The New York Film Competition and The Houston International Film Festival, Playwrite of several full-length musicals, founding member of the acclaimed New York stage combat ‘Fights R Us’, and having performed on stage and film on Broadway, BBC, and ABC), Dr Steve Taft (Theatre Department Chair and Educator for 30+ years, actor, director, playwriter, songwriter, and author of theatrical text The Theatre in YOU), and Dr Kim Barber Knoll (Artistic Director of Papermill Theatre New Hampshire – Mainstage and Children’s Theatre, NH Governor’s Distinguished Arts Winner, appearing on Broadway and elsewhere in over 60 productions as an actor and 65 as director). After graduating with 2 degrees from LaGrange, Barbie attended the Coles School of Business at Kennesaw State University and earned her third – a Bachelors of Business Administration degree.

Professional:
With a passion for theatre and for teaching, Barbie began teaching high school theatre in 2001. As the Director of Theatre Arts, she directed and competed in One-Act competitions, directed musicals, taught all aspects of theatre including set construction, lighting, sound, costuming, acting, and theatre production. Barbie directed many performances including Dracula, Fool for Love, Juvie, Life Under Water, and Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. While teaching, she was named the STAR Teacher for Cass High School (Bartow County, GA), Overall STAR Teacher for Bartow County, was Coordinator for the school’s Literary Team, hosted and judged various theatrical and performance competitions, and directed award-winning productions. Under Barbie’s leadership, the theatrical program grew from 5 students to over 75 students.
At the Grand Theatre, a professional local theatre in Cartersville, GA, Barbie taught acting classes to elementary, middle, and high school students, and directed the middle school Musical Theatre Camp for 10 years including productions Kamp Kaos, Westward Whoa, Wipeout, and Disco Knights. To Barbie, teaching students, sharing her love for the stage, and seeing student actors grow as people and gain confidence in everyday tasks is very rewarding.

Barbie was also a member and volunteer for her Woodstock GA church’s contemporary worship service. Contributing her time, she was on the Production Team as a Lighting Designer & Operator serving 2,000 people in worship.

Personal:
In 2013, Barbie’s family moved to the Stafford/Fredericksburg area from Georgia. She has continued to share her love of performing through workshops, homeschool co-ops, and summer camps. Barbie continues to study her craft through working on local film projects (sci fi / fantasy production Firebird), taking dance classes, and Acting/Directing Workshops in the DC area. Her best accomplishment, however, is her family. Barbie is the proud wife of Mark and proud mom and provider of homeschooling to her two beautiful dancing daughters Blythe and Delaney.