Meet Our Resident Artists


As a performer and educator, Lucia Acitelli has been involved in music education since 2002. With Guild Opera of Los Angeles, she created a standards based curriculum, taught music workshops, and performed in operas for LAUSD.  As a Keppel parent, Ms. Acitelli knows firsthand the importance of arts integration and will introduce musical concepts such as breath control, voice production, improvisation, song writing, collaboration, and rhythm. 

cathy gilbert - theatre

Cathy Gilbert has been teaching Creative Drama at Mark Keppel for over 10 years. Her weekly drama classes focus on theatre standards while giving students the opportunity to be skilled, engaged and imaginative performers as well as thoughtful audience members.

cristina neel - dance

Cris Neel started as a classroom volunteer, and then founded the Mark Keppel Elementary Dance/Drill Team.  Her dream was for Keppel to someday become a performing arts magnet and when Dr. Mason took over the school as principal, she took that idea and ran with it. The rest, as they say, is history.

joan zierhut - Visual art

Joan Zierhut has taught at Mark Keppel for nine years, and volunteered at the school for seven years prior to that.  Ms. Zierhut loves teaching all the grades because she gets to see the kids grow in confidence and self-expression while learning the value of visual art.