Arts Administration Faculty

Program Director

Dr. Zackary Ross, Arts Administration Program Director / Assistant Professor of Theatre

Dr. Zackary Ross

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 Unrehearsed ShakespeareThe 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Blithe Spirit, 44 Plays for 44 Presidents, 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 a Fight Director, he has recently staged Sarah Ruhl's Dead Man's Cell Phone, Naomi Iizuka's Anon(ymous), Fancy Me Mad by Michelle Salerno & Juan Ramiez, House of Desires by Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, and Dying City by Christopher Shinn. As and actor, he has appeared most recently in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, 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.

Affiliated Faculty

Trent Apple, J.D., Instructor

Trent AppleTrent Apple has a J.D. from Tulane Law School in New Orleans, and a B.A. in history from New College, the Honors College of Florida. Mr. Apple has taught several law-related courses at Bellarmine University since 2007, including courses on the intersection of art and law in the Arts Administration program, and on business law in the Rubel School of Business. Mr. Apple also teaches history and law at Louisville’s St. Francis School, where he is the Assistant Dean of Students. Prior to teaching full time, Mr. Apple practiced law in Kentucky for a decade.

Penny Peavler, Instructor

penny-peavlerPenny Peavler holds a bachelor of arts degree in Creative Writing with minors in Appalachian Studies and Business from the University of Kentucky, and a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Bellarmine. 

Penny is a veteran arts administrator with 30+years in all aspects of the field. Trained at Disney University in theme park management, she came to Louisville in 1990 to help open Kentucky Kingdom Amusement Park. There she served as personnel director, hiring and training the park's 1200 seasonal employees, and also as director of special projects. Afterwards, she joined the staff of Louisville’s Speed Art Museum as Director of Membership, Marketing, and Special Projects and served for 13 years growing participation and attendance by more than 50%. She led teams for the Leadership and Excellence in Arts Participation grant of the Wallace Foundation studying, over four years, the patterns of museum attendance among participants and disinclined participants with children ages 2 to 12. 

In 2007, she joined Weber Group, as Director of Brand Development, and worked with museums, zoos, amusement parks, theatres, hotels, and attractions of all types in brand development and project management of new and renovated attractions. Favorite projects include the Mister Rogers Neighborhood Attraction at Idlewild Park in Pittsburgh, the ground-up museum at the Outdoor Adventure and Discovery Center in Detroit, Michigan, and educational video scriptwriting and production for Glacier Run at Louisville Zoo. 

In 2015, she was recruited as Chief Executive Officer of Frazier History Museum. Peavler negotiated the contract with the Kentucky Distillers’ Association to make the Frazier in Louisville into the Official Start of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. She led design, development, and construction of a new entrance, native plants garden, and an exhibit on the history of bourbon, America’s Native Spirit, and its impact on the Commonwealth. She delivered the $9 million project on-time and on-budget. Under her leadership, the Frazier became the place where the world meets Kentucky, and she brought temporary and permanent exhibits to life about Kentucky’s culture and her people. Attendance and revenue reached all time highs under her leadership. She joined the Board of Directors in August of 2019 and stepped down as CEO.

Peavler formed Cultural Tourism Consultants, to create and renovate tourism concerns in the region. She is currently project managing feasibility for the transition of an abandoned surface coal mine into a space for arts incubation, nature, land conservation, and education in Eastern Kentucky.

Peavler is featured in the book, Diversity Among Non-Profit Arts Organizations (University of Chicago Press, 2001), and edited the Handbook of the Speed Art Museum Collection (2007), and the Catalog for the Retrospective of the Artist Mary Ann Currier (2005). 

She has produced and art directed more than 30-temporary and permanent museum exhibitions including What Is A Vote Worth: Suffrage Then and Now, Spirits of the Bluegrass: Prohibition and Kentucky, The Spirit of Kentucky, and Thomas Merton: A Familiar Stranger.

She is the 2019 recipient of the Trustees of Inclusive Equity Award given by Louisville Central Community Center.

She is a Commissioner of Louisville Tourism, a member of the Kentucky Humanities Council, and has taught arts administration at Bellarmine since 2010

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

Megan Burnett

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. S. Timothy Glasscock

GLASSCOCK, TIMDr. S. Timothy Glasscock, Choral Director and Department Chair for the Bellarmine Music Department, has spent nearly three decades teaching and performing in the Louisville Metro area. He holds the bachelors and masters degrees from U of L and a Doctorate in conducting from University of Kentucky, and spent 12 years as Director of Vocal Studies at Youth Performing Arts School, Kentucky's only full-time high school for the performing arts. Dr. Glasscock is an active clinician and master class presenter, leading European concert tours and conducting major works with orchestra over a wide spectrum of musical literature. He has sung and conducted in 17 countries, and now serves as Artistic Director of The Louisville Vocal Project, a professional chamber choir specializing in renaissance and newly composed choral works. Glasscock's research centers on Johannes Brahms's Ein deutsches Requiem, baroque-era burial music, and the intersection of music, aging, and end-of-life issues.

Dr. Mark Kano

Mark Kano is Assistant Professor of Music and Vocal Area Coordinator at Bellarmine University. Kano received a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Middle Tennessee State University and both the Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in Vocal Performance from the University of Kentucky. Mark has performed with orchestra and opera companies in the United States and Europe. He has been a winner in the Mid-South Regional National Association of Teacher’s of Singing Competition, as well as the Orpheus National Voice Competition. A dedicated voice teacher, Dr. Kano’s students have been winners in various vocal competitions, participated in summer music festivals, and have gone on to pursue music studies at such prestigious institutions as the University of Michigan, Indiana University, Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, and The Julliard School. Dr. Kano has served as Visiting Professor of Voice at the University of Kentucky and on the voice faculties of Centre College, Transylvania University, Kentucky Center Governor’s School for the Arts, and the Operafestival di Roma.

Dr. Alexander T. Simpson Jr.

SIMPSON, ATAlexander T. Simpson Jr., Associate Professor, directs the Bellarmine Handbell ensemble, teaches Music Literature and teaches courses in the IDC and Veritas Programs. Dr. Simpson received his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College, his M.M. from Converse College, and his Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky. Simpson has accompanied for the Kentucky Opera, the Charleston Opera Company, the Spartanburg Opera, the Converse College Opera Workshop, and the University of Louisville Opera Theatre.

Dr. Simpson has taught on the Music Faculty of the Kentucky Governor’s School for the Arts for 26 years, serving as Choral Director and Vocal Division Chairperson. He is the founder and Artistic Director of the Black Classical Artists of Louisville, an ensemble specializing in compositions by African-American composers. This group has performed throughout the Kentuckiana region as well as at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston South Carolina, boasting members who have who have performed with the Louisville Orchestra, the Cincinnati Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony, the San Francisco Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Metropolitan Opera.

Both a founding member and president of the Kentuckiana Branch of the National Association of Negro Musicians, Dr. Simpson serves as advisor for the Bellarmine Black Student Union (BSU) and coordinates the annual ‘Traditional Negro Spiritual’ Voice Competition as well as many other Black History Month commemorations.

Meme Tunnell

TUNNELL, MEMEMeme Tunnell is Assistant Professor of Music at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky, where she teaches piano and serves as Staff Accompanist and Director of the Preparatory Music Division. She has performed as adjunct keyboardist with the Louisville Orchestra since 1988, and formerly was principal keyboardist for the Meridian Symphony, Gulf Coast Symphony, and Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestras, and the Sinfonia da Camera of Illinois. Tunnell’s recording credits include the Coronet label CDs Melancholia and Lumen, and the Centaur Records Passages, The Morning Trumpet, and Nevolution with trumpeter Michael Tunnell; Mixed Doubles with Michael Tunnell and tubist Fritz Kaenzig, on the Coronet label; Chamber Music, featuring saxophonist Joseph Lulloff, on the Veriatza label; and the 2009 TNT Productions CD Look Within with trumpeter Patrick Henry Hughes. She is a former member of the piano faculties at the University of Southern Mississippi and S.U.N.Y.-Potsdam College.

Dave Clark

CLARK, DAVEDave Clark graduated with a BM in music education and a MM in jazz performance from the University of Louisville. He has had the good fortune to study with Harry Pickens, Don Braden, Wessell Anderson, John La Barbera, Sim Flora, and Branford Marsalis. Dave has performed with such diverse artists as Benny Golson, Clark Terry, Randy Brecker, Stanley Turrentine, James Moody, Kevin Mahogany, Harry Pickens, Nancy Wilson, Miles Griffith, the Louisville Orchestra, the Dells, Keke Wyatt, Don Braden and Delfeayo Marsalis. He has performed at the Umbria Jazz Festival in Perugia, Italy, as well as the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Montreaux, Switzerland. He also has performed at the Jazz Educators Network Conference and as part of a good will tour and educational exchange program in Barbados. Dave is a Yanagisawa Artist and makes his home in Louisville, KY, where he is the head of the Jazz Studies program at Bellarmine University. Dave's duties include teaching saxophone, jazz harmony, jazz history, improvisation, and directing Bellarmine's Nouveau Gumbo ensemble.

Sarah Martin

Sarah Martin teaches photography and digital media and is the chair of Bellarmine’s Art Department. She earned her BA in Media Art from the University of Tennessee and her MFA in Photography from Yale University. She spent a number of years working in the film and television industry before teaching full time. Prior to her appointment at Bellarmine, she taught at Yale University and the University of Tennessee, created a photography major at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and served as Artist in Residence for a year at Lyon College. Sarah exhibits her photography and video art internationally.

Caren Cunningham

Caren Cunningham is the Director of Bellarmine’s Arts Administration program. She is an international artist and educator. She has held 30 solo exhibitions on five continents, including shows in Lima, Peru; Helsinki Finland; Nairobi, Kenya; and Fuzhou China. She has participated in over 60 group exhibitions worldwide. Articles have been written about her work in English, German, Finnish, Hebrew, Mandarin, Spanish and Swahili. She has over 30 years of university teaching experience in Egypt, Kenya, Scotland, China, and the U.S.A.

Laura Hartford

Laura Hartford teaches photography and digital art and serves as an Associate Dean of the Bellarmine College of Arts and Sciences. She has a background in both fine art and commercial media production, including credits as an Associate Producer of video programs for Donna Lawrence Productions. She holds an M.F.A. from Indiana University, Bloomington and is the recipient of grants for art and teaching from the Kentucky Foundation for Women, the Society for Photographic Education, and the Kentucky Center for the Arts. Her work is included in both private and institutional collections including the University of Louisville Photographic Archives, the Kinsey Institute, the Preus Museum of Photography in Horten Norway, and the William Henry Fox Talbot Museum in Lacock, England where she served as an artist in residence.