Kayla Ekeland

I’m Kayla Ekeland; my husband Drew and I have been married 6 years. Art has been a big part of my life. It’s something I have felt has helped me process what goes on in our day to day lives andI’m always trying something new with my art. 

I am currently the art teacher at Camelot Intermediate School and have been with the Brookings School District for 8 years. It is a very rewarding position being able to help students express themselves through art. I have been working on murals at Camelot over the years. In the past I have been commissioned to paint portraits for families, which is a lot of fun. I would have to say one of my favorite projects was in 2014 with my 5thgrade girls. One of the girls was working on a Camelot Letter project with me. We gathered a group and painted two murals in the viaduct in town of the Bobcat and Jackrabbits logos.

Another fun fact about me is my love for firefighting. I am going on my 8thyear with the fire department. I was inspired by grandfathers who were on fire departments for years and my dad who was on the Brookings Fire Department for 32 years. I specialize in Wildland Firefighting and have gone west to work on fires several times. 

Helping others is so rewarding and I want to inspire others to be creative and do what you love!

Ellie Livingston

After graduating from Yankton High School in 2002 Ellie (Satter) Livingston went on to study musical theatre at Millikin University in Decatur, IL. While at Millkin Ellie was cast in mainstage productions along with numerous student directed shows.

In 2004 Ellie started working at the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer, SD. During her three years at the BHP Ellie was in 3 to 4 shows every summer and spent her time off stage in the costume shop getting to work with costume designer Travis Halsey and a host of many other amazing directors and performers.

In the fall of 2004 Ellie studied English, Writing and Theatre in London with a group of students from Millkin. While abroad Ellie trained at the Globe Theatre and spent time studying Shakespeare in Stratford.

In 2005 Ellie transferred to The University of South Dakota. Under the guidance of Ronald Moyer Ellie found herself in many mainstage shows including, The Secret Garden, Macbeth, Crimes of the Heart and Urinetown. Ellie's training at USD prepared her for a career in professional theatre.

After USD Ellie went on to work for Theatre West Virginia where she played the role of Jan in Grease. She also toured with Nebraska Theatre Caravan out of Omaha, NE, Missoula Children's Theatre, where she toured to over 8 states in 5 months, and the Gamut Theatre Group in Harrisburg, PA.

Ellie spent 2 years working for Gamut where she performed in many Shakespeare productions and was able to check off a bucket list role, Lady Macbeth in Macbeth. Ellie also acted in Popcorn Hat Children's Theatre shows and was a theatre teacher with the Gamut Theatre School. While in PA Ellie met her now husband Mike. After getting engaged the couple moved to Kennewick, WA.

While in WA Ellie acted with the Mid Columbia Musical Theatre company, directed and taught at the Academy of Children's Theatre and directed and choreographed at Richland High School.

In 2013 Ellie's first daughter Cora Jane was born, shortly after the Livingston's moved to Brookings. Since moving to Brookings Ellie opened Ellie Alayne Arts, a small theatre studio focusing on the theatrical training of kids grades K-12. She has worked with the 4H performing arts troupe for 2 years, choreographed for Brookings High School's production of Beauty and the Beast and spent 4 years as the Brookings High School Dance coach. Ellie spent time writing for Broadway World.com and has done all she can to turn her daughters into little theatre kids.

Ellie's mission is to bring the magic, passion and art of theatre to Brookings. All the world truly is a stage if you try hard enough! 

Lisa Solum

Lisa is an artist, teacher and illustrator. She graduated with a double art major from SDSU and continued her studies at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Afterteaching for 32 years, she continues to offer private lessons in drawing and illustration.