Education: M.F.A, Acting, The Theatre School, DePaul University, Chicago, IL, A.B., English, Fordham University, Bronx, NY, Phi Beta Kappa, Alpha Sigma Nu (National Jesuit Honor Society), Magna Cum Laude; Additional Training, American Conservatory Theatre, San Francisco, CA
As an actress Kendra has performed with several Chicago companies, and is a proud ensemble member of Steep Theatre Company. Kendra received the 2010 Non-Equity Joseph Jefferson Award for Outstanding Actress in a Lead Role – Play, for her role in Steep Theatre's Harper Regan (Top Ten Shows, Chicago Tribune, TimeOut, Top Ten Performances, Chicago Tribune). She is currently performing in Steep’s production of Fallow and this fall’s projects include the North American premiere of Simon Stephen’s Motortown at Steep and dialect coaching Northanger Abbey for Remy Bumppo Theatre. Other credits include: Luther (Steep), Neighborhood 3 (Strawdog Theatre), The Test (International Voices Project – Goethe Institute), Hunger (Lifeline Theatre), Want (Steppenwolf First Look Repertory), Pornography (Steep), Oil (IVP Goethe Institute), State of the Union, (Strawdog), The Thin Man, City Lit, and The Goat, Or Who Is Sylvia?, Red Twist Theatre. Dialect coaching credits: The Knowledge, Moment, Love and Money and Festen (Steep Theatre), Brighton Beach Memoirs, (Raven Theatre), 25 Saints (Pine Box Theatre), Flare Path (Griffin Theatre), The Wind in the Willows (City Lit). Kendra was also featured in ABC's Christmas special Joy to the World, narrating the Santa Lucia legend. Those with a keen eye could have caught Kendra in several episodes of NBC's Midnight Caller, the highlight of which was getting roughly shouldered by Steppenwolf's Gary Cole. Kendra has used her voice to sell cars for Mercedes-Benz, to encourage tourism in travelogue videos for Landmark Entertainment, and to channel a woman sounding suspiciously like Condoleezza Rice for the independent film WMD-80.
Prior to coming to Columbia College Chicago, Kendra taught voice at the University of Illinois-Chicago and instructed students ages K - Adult for the Institute of Reading Development at the University of Pittsburgh, Johnstown. She has worked in public relations for classical musicians in New York City and in theatrical productions in San Francisco, where, among other duties, she served as a production assistant on a variety of shows including An Evening With Peter Ustinov. Kendra continues to coach privately and has led workshops on voicing Shakespeare, and the training of lectors and other public speakers. She volunteered for several years as an ESL tutor with Literacy Chicago.
Kendra is a Co-Coordinator of the Theatre Foundation Course and has served on the department's BFA Committee. She brought Columbia College and Steep Theatre together to host the Olivier Award-winning playwright Simon Stephens for several days of classes and readings in March 2012. She has vocal and/or dialect coached over fifty-seven departmental productions.