CLICK A NAME below to learn more about our BRAC Staff…

Jim Barber, IOM
BRAC Executive Director

Jim Barber accepted the position of Executive Director of the Branson Regional Arts Council in April 2017. His background in the arts is varied, and includes everything from the visual arts (drawing, cartooning, sculpture, photography, painting, puppet and ventriloquist figure making), the performing arts (acting, theatre design, ventriloquism, magic & illusions), as well as the musical arts (singing, percussion, drums, guitar, banjo). His on-stage performing career has taken him around the world multiple times as an entertainer aboard major cruise lines and entertaining our military troops with the USO.

He was voted the NACA Comedy Entertainer of the Year for his performances at nearly 2,000 college campuses across the country in the late 80’s and early 90’s, followed by featured spots on many top Branson theatre productions including the Glen Campbell Goodtime Show, the Eddie Rabbitt Show, The Osmond Family Theater, The Tony Orlando Show, Jimmy Osmond’s American Jukebox Show, and also at his own Hamner Barber Variety Show and theatre for 10 years. Over the years, Jim’s comedy has been featured on many national television networks including A&E, CBS, FOX, ABC, TNN and RFD-TV, with his favorite appearance being on the Late Show with David Letterman.

Jim also has extensive background in multimedia production and marketing, having earned his BA degree from the University of Minnesota as well as an Associate’s Degree from the Art Institute of Philadelphia. He has personally developed marketing and advertising campaigns for many Branson area businesses. Jim has served on many non-profit boards including 6 years for the Branson Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and currently for the Missouri Citizens For The Arts (MCA), and the Missouri Association of Community Arts Agencies (MACAA). In January 2018, Jim earned his IOM accreditation from the US Chamber of Commerce’s Institute of Organization Management.

He also hosts a Branson based radio show called “The Barber Shop” weekdays from 9am – 1pm Central on 98.1fm or via the internet at where he discussed Arts and Entertainment events happening in and around the Ozarks.

Kyle Blanchard
BRAC Theatre & Special Events Manager

Kyle joined the BRAC Staff in February 2023. His passion for theatre began in middle school in Virginia where he soaked in as much knowledge as possible from local arts education programs. By his senior year of high school Kyle raised money to buy the rights for Clue The Musical, rented a theatre, then bravely produced and directed the full-length production with a team of his peers.
In 2013 he graduated from Liberty University with Bachelors of Arts degrees in Theatre Performance & Production. Since then, he has been performing and directing professionally all around the country; some of his favorite experiences include being in a touring illusionist’s show, playing Tarzan, and getting to perform with exotic animals at a very large Branson theatre that tells bible stories on an epic scale.
Kyle’s enthusiasm for artistic expression and his drive to inspire others continues to grow and he is ready to give back to the local arts & education community in the Branson area.

Karie Dykeman
BRAC Administrative Assistant & Box Office Manager

Karie is the first person you’ll see when you enter the Historic Owen Theatre to purchase tickets or register for a class or audition. She will also be the person you are speaking to when you call the box office or administrative office.

Starting out as a volunteer for the organization many years ago, she is now an extremely valuable member of our full time staff. Along with Kim Hale, Karie has also co-produced dozens of musicals and plays at the Historic Owen Theatre.

Kimberly Hale
BRAC Education Director

Kim has been working as a physical therapist at Mercy Branson Therapy Services for over 20 years and currently is the Therapy Manager for Mercy Branson Therapy Services. She is an orthopedic physical therapist with specialty in Dance and Performing Arts Medicine providing rehabilitation to dancers and performing artists working professionally in Branson. She has a Masters Degree in Physical Therapy and a Bachelor of Arts in Human Biology. She also served on the board of Tri-Lakes Community Theatre (TLC ) as Vice-President.

She has co-produced over 30 musicals over the past 8 years and has enjoyed the collaboration of BRAC with the community. She organized and collaborated with local school administrators for the induction Thespian Society chapters and serves as an outreach resource for local schools and the Arts community. She is passionate about continuing to bring awareness to the importance of arts education to the youth in the Tri-Lakes area. The Arts fosters creativity and creative thinking and intellectual curiosity and BRAC offers a place in the community where the youth and adults can grow as an Art’s community.

In October 2023, Kim was honored as the Branson Regional Arts Council’s  “Art Citizen” of the Year at the 1st Annual Arts Gala.

Justin Ables
BRAC Board Member

Justin Ables has proudly been working with the Branson Regional Arts Council since 2016. Since then, Justin has worked as a director, educator, and advisor for BRAC and created programs such as the annual Shakespeare in the Park. When he’s not working at BRAC, you can find Justin performing at Sight and Sound Theaters where he was been acting for 8 years.

Jake Deck
BRAC Crescendo Theatre Troupe Co-Director

Jacob is a performer/director/choreographer originally from Kennett, MO. In addition to his role as instructor and director for Crescendo Theatre Troupe, Jake has been involved in dozens of BRAC stage productions as an Actor, Director, Choreographer, Set Designer, Audio Technician, Lighting Technician and more. He began singing and dancing at a very young age, and continued to pursue this passion throughout high school and college. Professional credits include: Pinocchio in Shrek the Musical and Bert in Mary Poppins. Jacob is currently performing professionally in Clay Cooper’s Country Express and Hot Rods and High Heels.

Julie Brinkman
Crescendo Theatre Troupe Co-Director

Julie has been very active at BRAC in a variety of ways. Her acting credits include Beauty & the BeastSeven Brides for Seven BrothersA Christmas CarolThe Wizard of OzThe Sound of Music, The Little Mermaid and Mary Poppins. A Co-Director of Crescendo, she brings valuable skills and educational training for our talented young students.

Jacob Estes
BRAC Staccato Theatre Troupe Director

Jacob is a director/performer based in Branson. He has had the amazing opportunity to travel the United States teaching, performing, and directing in various theatre venues throughout his professional career. Jacob is currently the director of Staccato show choir at the Branson Regional Arts Council. You may have seen his work performing/directing locally at Silver Dollar City, The Welk’s Resort, BRAC, and Sight and Sound Theatres.

Ellie Faggion
BRAC Voice, Acting and Piano Instructor

Ellie Faggion has been a professional performer in Branson for the past three years and is now offering private Voice, Acting, & Piano Lessons for students of any age! She began teaching in 2012 and since then has instructed over a hundred students – including private sessions and group classes. Ellie has 21 years of experience in the arts, including college education in music and a certificate from the Sight & Sound Conservatory in Performing Arts, and has directed and assistant directed several musical productions. Ellie thrives on helping her students discover their true potential, wherever they’re at in their knowledge and skill, and likes to challenge her students while also having fun along the way!

Delyla Uebel
BRAC Accompanist & Vocal Coach

Delyla is a resident of Lampe, MO has broad experience as a performer and an educator. Delyla performed throughout the Midwest and international tours in Japan. For 25 years she shared her expertise as a High School vocal director and accompanist playing for High Schools and Universities. She received a BM from UMSL, & MS in Music Ed from University of Illinois, Urbana. Her current passion is teaching and playing diverse musical pieces to audiences in the Table Rock Lake area and working with students at MSU, College of the Ozarks, and the Branson Regional Arts Council.

Karen & Roger Bergford
BRAC Vocal Instructors

Roger and Karen have over 30 years experience teaching both private and group vocal lessons. Roger earned his Bachelor of Music Education – Vocal Specialist from the University of Missouri in Kansas City, as well as graduate work in Vocal Performance from the University of Colorado – Boulder.  Karen graduated with high honors from the University of Colorado – Boulder to earn her Bachelor of Music Education. Together they co-authored an industry book titled, “Sound & Language, the Defining Elements of the Complete Singer” in 2007.

After retiring as public school music educators in Colorado, the Bergfords moved to Branson in 2008 and began teaching 26 frontline singers in the Hughes Brothers it show, which won the Branson Show Award for “Best Show of the Year” (2009-2012).  In addition to working with the Hughes family, the Bergfords have also taught singers from The Haygoods and Jim Stafford Show casts, a backup singer with Andy Williams, and Voices of Glory, the top 5 finalists of America’s Got Talent (2009) who worked with the Michael Jackson/Boyz II Men manager, Qadree El-Amin. In 2017, the Voices of Glory were named “Vocal Group of the Year,” receiving both the prestigious Terry Award and the Branson Show Award.  Eighteen-year-old Nadia was  named “Female Vocalist of the Year.” The Bergfords were even invited to host a master class on a Bahamas cruise alongside Michael Jackson’s voice teacher in 2012.

Lisa Murphy
BRAC Visual Arts Advisor

Lisa Murphy is a Past-President of the Branson Regional Arts Council. She has dedicated her life to promoting Art Education in Southwest Missouri. After graduating from MSU with a degree in Elementary Education and a minor in Art and Library Science she started working towards a Masters Degree at Drury University, where she studied Secondary Art and Gifted Education. Her professional career includes teaching Art at the Springfield Art Museum for five years and teaching in the public schools for over thirty years. The majority of her career was devoted to teaching Art in a small rural school that was named one of the top five high schools in Missouri and awarded the National Blue Ribbon. Her professional awards include: National Recognition in Who’s Who Teacher of the Year, seven times and the Outstanding Teacher Award by the Missouri Fine Arts Academy twice in her career. Currently she teaches Art at The Summit Preparatory School in Springfield.

Lisa has been proud to call the Ozarks her home for over thirty years. During that time she has been involved in numerous musical theatre productions in Branson in a variety of roles. She has been a Performer, Producer, and Marketing Coordinator for the following plays: “Hello, Dolly!”, “Jekyll and Hyde”, “Once Upon a Mattress”, “Clue”, Damn Yankees, Shakespeare Abridged, and Yes, Virginia. With all of these accomplishments in her career she still believes the greatest accomplishment in her lifetime to be her family. She feels very fortunate and proud to have their love and support. She and her husband have two daughters. Jenna who graduated from Drury University last year and received a fellowship at Arena Stage Theatre in Washington D.C. and Michelle who graduated from George Washington University and works for the State Department. She feels honored to have the opportunity to promote all of the arts (music, literature, dance, theatre, and visual art) for people of all ages in our community by serving on the Board of Directors of the Branson Art Council.