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Katherine Mapother

Katherine Mapother

Arts Education Artist
  • Theatre


    Katherine Mapother is an actor and singer who is passionate about theater’s power to reach young people.

    For the past 16 years, she has worked in theater and education, both in the U.S. and Africa. Living in other cultures is a significant influence in her artistic life, offering another dimension to “stepping into someone else’s shoes,” a component vital to theater.

    In Namibia, she taught high school English and created an award-winning theater program. In Kenya, she trained American college students to teach in rural schools. She performed in and led drama workshops throughout New York City, later returning to Louisville to establish an Education Department for the children’s theater company, Blue Apple Players.  Under her leadership, drama programs helped students become active participants in their own learning, resulting in improved state test scores at partnering schools.

    Katherine is inspired by the transformative nature of theater, allowing both the actor and audience to explore what it means to be human and find, within that humanity, compassion for oneself and others.  For her, acting brings a tremendous sense of being alive.

    In the classroom, Katherine’s overall goal is to help young people trust and express themselves. Through this, they break through perceived limitations to become more self-accepting, open, empathetic and hopeful. They see new possibilities for themselves and the world.

    Katherine has an MA in Educational Theatre from NYU and a BA in English from Notre Dame.

    Potential Residency Project

    All drama/theater residencies are designed to engage students and teachers in using the actor’s tools of body, voice, and imagination.  This active participation brings learning to life and leads to solid results.

    Students develop:

    • New connections with subject matter

    • Better retention of information

    • Belief that they can be successful.

    Teachers develop:

    • Effective teaching tools to use across the curriculum

    • games and activities for teaching drama core content

    • positive insights on individuals and the class, seen from a new perspective.

    [Gr. K-5]

    Looking to deepen cultural engagement? “Africa!” introduces the richness of West African life and culture while actively engaging students with fun drama activities. With an African folktale as a starting point, students create and perform scenes using literary and performance elements. For Grade 5 CATS preparation, particular emphasis is given to the purposes of theater and the role it has long played in West Africa.

    [Gr. 5, 8, 11]

    Will your students be assessed this year? “Getting Ready for CATS” helps prepare your students for Arts & Humanities Drama/Theatre Core Content in a fun, focused way. Depending on teacher preferences and length of residency, workshops cover elements of drama (literary, technical and performance), culture, purposes and/or structures.

    [Gr. 5-12]

    Would you like your class to find new meaning in poetry? Through theater games and movement activities, the class engages with a poem to find life in words off the page. Next, they are introduced to a new poem and use this as a stimulus to create scenes in small groups. This creative process gives students the experience of interpreting, reciting and appreciating poetry in a hands-on way - maybe even finding it exciting!


    Could you use an arts boost in approaching other subject matter? Use drama as your teaching tool! An original program is designed to help enrich a topic in social studies, language arts, literature, math, science, etc. The teacher identifies the specific area of the curriculum to be addressed, we list our main objectives and then drama is incorporated for the classroom. This model offers a wonderful opportunity for teacher/artist collaboration and a solid professional development component.

    Would a group of teachers at your school or in your district like to learn drama techniques you can use in your own teaching? Professional Development sessions are available sharing drama content and teaching strategies for other subjects in a simple, accessible w Sessions are designed to be fun, hands-on and teacher-centered.

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