Meet the Team

Kara James - Academy Principal & Creative Director

Vocal Coach, Early Childhood Music Specialist, Registered Kinder Beat Teacher & Drums Alive Instructor

Kara has been performing since she was a very young girl and has a rich background in singing, dance, musical theatre, multi instrumental music studies and performance. She hails from a family of musicians and dancers and has taken part in many stage productions (her very first performance as Annie when she was only 6 years old). As an adult, Kara has worked professionally as a musician and vocalist for events and venues for many years. Kara is highly passionate about the performing arts and has a keen interest in childhood development through creative and expressive therapies.

Kara being a free soul with a love for travel, was travelling Australia working on adventure yachts at the age of 21, both as a stewardess and entertainer (musician and vocalist). The passing of her Grandfather who was an incredible Jazz musician, sparked Kara’s interest to study within this field. She moved into an Advanced Diploma of Jazz with the Jazzworx Music Institute, Brisbane and soon after completion, Kara was offered a position in the Townsville region as a Music Coordinator of a Catholic Boarding school teaching music from prep to year 10. Her experience working with children inspired her own journey, running private music studios then her own academy of the arts, also designing her own Vocal and Early Childhood Syllabus.

Kara loves working with children of all ages and finds teaching the arts to be the most rewarding career, this is evident in the way she gives 110% to her students and is passionate about sharing her love of the arts with others. Kara continues to strengthen her knowledge of pedagogy and child development through sustained professional development, study and workshops in her field. She loves to learn new and innovative techniques and how they can benefit her students.


Cert IV in Music (Voice & Guitar), Ad. Dip Music (Jazz major –Voice & Piano), Cert. Kodaly (AKC), Licensed Kinder Beat Teacher, Licensed Drums Alive Instructor, various professional development workshops in Vocal Pedagogy, Performance coaching, Anatomy and Physiology of the Singing Mechanism (technique).

Research and study areas include vocal pedagogy, anatomy and physiology, speech therapy, dramatic arts, contemporary vocal arranging, performance, early childhood music development, creative & expressive therapies.

Student Teachers Assistants & Instructors

All of our Teachers Assistants and Instructors are current and/ or past students who have been extensively trained and continue ongoing training to deliver the BA ARTS Contemporary Vocal and Performance Curriculum and furthermore external Syllabuses used in BA ARTS classes.

Jewel McCotter

Jewel has been with the Academy as a student going on her 5th year now. She was one of our very first students to attend the academy and her friendly, vibrant and bubbly nature is loved by all. Completing her Senior Certificate with Shalom College Bundaberg, Jewel featured in various stage productions throughout, including Camp Rock, A Chorus Line and the Addams Family.

Jewel is always encouraging, offering assistance and positive support to our students and has been sharing her passion for the performing arts with the academy, assisting Kara in junior and intermediate classes for the past 3 years. She has an enriching background in singing, dance, drama & musical theatre. Jewel is a country girl at heart and loves exploring this genre.

Jewel has been training to specialise in early childhood music (under 8’s) and is an absolute gem with the children. She concentrates on our Munchkin and Junior Let’s SING & DANCE program, our SING! class and is training to become a Licenced Kinder beat Teacher. Jewel is furthermore completing her contemporary AMEB Vocal examinations.

Tahli Thomas

Tahli has been singing ever since she was 5 years of age and has been playing the guitar since the age of 10. She has always enjoyed music, singing and dance and joined our academy as a student in 2014. Since then, she has excelled in her vocal and performance study and was invited to become an assistant within the academy to support and mentor younger students. Tahli attends regular training within the BA ARTS curriculum and also how to deliver technique and core skills within our vocal & performance technique syllabuses. Tahli has a keen ear and eye for performance detail and is an exceptional choreographer with a rich background in dance performance. She is completing her contemporary AMEB Vocal exams and is looking forward to developing both her personal and teaching career in performance. Tahli concentrates on our Level 1 and 2 Intermediate classes.

Logan Tinney

Logan joined our academy in 2014 and has excelled in various facets of music, drama and performance. He is a straight ‘A’ student who has achieved many academic excellence awards, including Top of the Subject ‘Music’ in 2016. His background in singing includes Choir, Solo and Musical Theatre participation & performance. He attends The Playhouse Youth Theatre and played the role of Prince Eric 5 in The Little Mermaid production in 2016. Furthermore, Logan featured in the Creative Regions Socially Engaged Theatre Project in January 2017 - Elephant in the Room – Pierre. Logan accomplished his Grade 5 AMEB Classical Piano Certificate in 2016 as well as many awards within our local eisteddfod including:

  • Drama Eisteddfod 2016
    • Highly Commended-Group Mime Literal Own Choice
    • First Prize-Excerpt from a play
    • First Prize-Group Mime Abstract
  • Singing Eisteddfod 2016
    • Highly Commended-Own Choice from Musical Theatre
  • Piano Eisteddfod 2016
    • Highly Commended-Piano Own Choice
    • First Prize-Piano Open
    • First Prize-Piano Set Age Own
    • The Piano Bursary-Encouragement/Potential
    • The Junior Piano Championship-Aggregate

Logan has an extraordinary musical ear, is a talented actor and is growing as a vocalist. He concentrates on our Spotlight Arts program and mentors and assists within our Youth programs. Logan is also the academy Piano tutor and continues to study his classical piano externally, completing further examinations. Additionally, he studies classical voice (externally) and is completing his contemporary AMEB Vocal examinations with BA ARTS.



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Address: 76B Woondooma St, Bundaberg, QLD 4670.

Phone: 0428 651 447