Current Teachers:

Alana Smith

Alana Smith Came to CharacterWorks from the theater department at Virginia Tech. While studying acting, she also discovered a love for teaching. God’s plan sent her back to Richmond to continue pursuing her passion in her hometown. Some of her favorite roles include: Nurse in Romeo and Juliet, the title role in Eurydice; on the local stage with Quill Theater as Margaret in Much Ado About Nothing and the Evil Queen in Cymbeline; and with Virginia Rep as Red Dog in Go, Dog, Go! She has been teaching with CharacterWorks since 2008 and has had the wonderful opportunity to direct many CWorks shows since 2010. She lives in Midlothian with her husband, Daniel, and their 3 sons.


Alia Glidden

A Richmond native, Alia started her theatre experience with CharacterWorks (formerly CYT) in 2004. She participating in their first productions of Annie, Cinderella, The Jungle Book, The Wizard of Oz, Beauty and the Beast, The Music Man and Seussical the Musical. She has just returned from living in New York City for 9 years, where she continued to hone her vocal and acting skills with Broadway coaches and directors, and recently was on staff for Times Square Church’s Music department as a church worship leader. She is thankful to the Lord for allowing her to share her love of the theatre with this younger generation and she considers it a great privilege.


Carson Burkett

Carson Burkett holds a B.A. in Theater from Liberty University and is a proud CYT Richmond alumnus and CWorks staff member. In addition to his stage management and directing credits at CharacterWorks, Carson has been privileged to perform in several Central Virginia premiers with Alluvion Stage Company, including Les Miserables, Mary Poppins, and Peter and the Starcatcher. He loves working for the organization that inspired his love of theatre and helped deepen his relationship with Jesus.


Davis Mercer

Davis is a graduate from Liberty University’s School of Business, but his true passion has always been the arts. A proud Characterworks (formerly CYT Richmond) alumnus, Davis has had the opportunity to explore theater in all areas of the stage, from Directing to performing and everything in between. Some past favorite roles include: Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera at Liberty University, Enjorals in Les Miserable with the Alluvion Stage Company and CYT, Ensemble in Samson with Sight and Sound Theaters, Davey in Newsies and Chef Louis in The Little Mermaid with Alluvion Stage Company. In addition to his performance credits, Davis was a Theater Teacher at Oklahoma Christian School in Oklahoma City, OK. There he was able to direct several shows including, Tarzan and High School Musical. Davis is thrilled to be back teaching for the organization that cultivated his love for all things theater and is eager to help future artists cultivate that same love!


Kami Mercer

Kami graduated from Liberty University with a B.S. in Communication Studies. While in Lynchburg, she performed with Alluvion Stage Company in shows including Mary Poppins, The Little Mermaid, and Newsies. She has been dancing for over 15 years and has received training from programs such as Shenandoah University, Virginia Governor's School, Ad Deum Dance Company, and Shenandoah Conservatory Arts Academy. She was the Artistic Director/Choreographer for Diving Call Dance Company and she has choreographed musicals for high school productions as well as choreography for many performances. Teaching dance is something that she loves to do and her favorite styles include ballet, contemporary, tap, and jazz. Kami is thrilled to be teaching at CWorks this year and sharing her love of dance.


Katy Anna Harris

Katy Anna is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University with a BFA in Theatre Performance. After graduating, she went to London to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where she received a certificate for Shakespearean Acting. Katy Anna is also an Elby Award winning chef, graduating from Culinard in 2015, just before giving birth to her daughter, Marlowe. Some of her favorite theatrical roles have included "Beatrice" from Much Ado About Nothing, "Cassandra" from Agamemnon and His Daughters, "Fred" from Once Upon a Mattress, and "Slater" from Catacombs. A self-acclaimed dork, she and her husband spend their vacations at DragonCon, where she has a thriving Steampunk Cosplay, and her husband dresses as a Jedi; and sometimes are able to make it to Disney World, or the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Katy Anna is a proud Slytherin.


Kaylin Battiste

Kaylin just moved back to the Richmond area with her husband, Zach, and their daughter, Lennox and she is so excited to be returning to where she first fell in love with theatre. Kaylin spent over ten years involved with Characterworks (Previously CYT Richmond) as an actor, stage manager and drama teacher. She has also been a part of a handful of professional shows with the Alluvion Stage Company, including Tarzan, Les Miserables, Mary Poppins and Kindertransport. Kaylin is looking forward to bringing her love for theatre and for Christ to the kids and creating a fun and engaging environment where they can deepen their faith and grow in their love for the stage.


Maura Brigham

Maura Brigham is a voice teacher, music director and accompanist from Henrico, VA. Maura received her Master’s in Musical Theatre at Boston Conservatory. Her students have gone on to pursue degrees in Musical Theatre at NYU, USC, Cal State – Fullerton, OCU and JMU among other schools. As a member of NATS, her students have won recognition at both state and regional competitions. Maura and her husband, Dave, are the proud parents of Roseanna and Mary Grace.


Melissa Crouterfield

Melissa Crouterfield graduated from Liberty University in May, 2013 with a B.A. in Theater Performance, a B.M. in Piano, and minor in Vocal Performance. She began working as an accompanist/vocalist at age 12 for choirs, churches, singing tour groups, and homeschool co-ops. When Melissa came to Liberty as an undergraduate studying Theatre and Music, she simultaneously became immersed in playing piano for voice lessons on campus as well as playing in the orchestra pit for several theatre productions. Melissa taught private voice and piano lessons while performing onstage with Alluvion Stage Company in Lynchburg, Virginia. She also worked four years at Liberty University as the University's theater department pianist, providing vocal coaching and prep for musical theater students. Melissa is thrilled to be a part of CWorks Theater!


Mia White

Mia Kirk White has been teaching young children for over 15 years. She holds a Bachelor degree in Early Education from VCU and is also the director of a pre-school in the West End. Her passion for acting, dance, and voice began when she was very young. She grew up in the television industry in California and has been involved in theater and film most of her life. Her 2 children, Luke and Audrey, have been in multiple CYT/CharacterWorks productions.


Olivia (Natale) Murrow

Olivia (Natale) Murrow received a B.A. in Psychology from Christopher Newport University with a minor in Dance. She is a CYT alumna, and has worked their summer camps for over 10 years, as well as choreographed for multiple CharacterWorks shows. Dance has been a part of her life since she was little, and she is grateful for the opportunity to now share her love of dance with children at CharacterWorks.


Rebecca McNamee

Becky started dancing at 3 years old after she saw Singin' In The Rain and never looked back. She graduated with a BA in Musical Theater from James Madison University in 2009. Becky was fortunate enough to direct as well as perform at school and found that she loved teaching and directing as much as she loved performing. Becky performed professionally at various regional theaters and in DC before moving to Richmond. Some of her favorite past roles include Philia in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Hunyak in Chicago, Rusty in Footloose, and Sally in You're a Good Man Charlie Brown. She enjoys sharing her love of Jesus and performing with her students both in our Academy class program and as a show director. Becky and her husband, Shane, have 2 daughters, Emma and Clara.


Silvia Ledon