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Theater and Dance Department
James C. Thurston
About Theater and Dance
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Theater & Dance welcomes hundreds of students each year to participate in classes, performances and workshops regardless of their major or level of experience. The Department offers students a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the history, literature and production of performance. Our mission is to impart liberal arts values by fostering creative expression, stimulating critical and imaginative thinking, and increasing cultural literacy through study in a spectrum of studio, laboratory and discussion-centered courses. The program of study includes frequent opportunities for practical experience in theater and dance, including creative research and production opportunities and service learning projects. Undergraduate students in theater and dance also enjoy opportunities to increase their abilities in self-reflection, multicultural sensitivity, and the comparison of social values and ethical systems; in short, they learn how to be productive citizens and professional leaders through their scholarly and applied experiences. The department also seeks to entertain and to educate the larger community through its rigorous production schedule of plays, dance concerts, touring artists, and residency workshops with guest artists.
Consistent with the College's mission, the major in theater and dance is a liberal arts, not a pre-professional, major. It is, however, a major that will adequately prepare particularly interested and talented students for graduate study and further involvement in the performing arts. It is both a structured and sequential major, ensuring that all students have broad exposure and training in acting, directing, movement, design, technical production, performance history and theory in addition to the opportunity to focus on a specialized track during the junior and senior years. Students are also encouraged to study abroad and to participate in professional internship opportunities, including the Colby Theater and Dance/Old Vic New Voices Internship Program in London, where students have the opportunity to work with artists and arts administrators at the world famous Old Vic Theatre.
The Department of Theater and Dance is housed in Runnals Union. This performance facility includes Strider Theater, the Dunn Dance Studio, scenic and costume shops, rehearsal rooms, a design studio, light and sound labs, and the Cellar Theater where traditional plays and experimental productions are performed.
Each season presents a busy and diversified performance schedule. Faculty and student collaboration is an intrinsic aspect of the department, along with a strong commitment to student exposure to annual visiting guest and touring artists. The department enthusiastically encourages all students to participate in every aspect of production, and offers a broad range of studies in order to give students a well-rounded understanding of the art form. As a result, recent graduates of the program are engaged in a variety of positions in professional and educational theater in the United States and abroad.
Complementing our annual performance schedule, working professionals visit the campus to share their talents, insights and stories through master classes, lectures, and informal gatherings. These events offer an extraordinary glimpse into the inner workings of professional theater and dance. For more information about our 2010-2011 professional series events, please visit the "Spotlight" and "On-line Callboard" features of the Colby College Theater and Dance web site: web.colby.edu/theater. Additional information about the Department of Theater and Dance is included in the Colby course catalog, where all the courses are described in detail, and on the web. If you have further questions, please feel free to contact Lynne Conner, Chair and Associate Professor of Theater and Dance, Colby College, 4520 Mayflower Hill, Waterville, Maine 04901-8845. E-mail: email@example.com.
Lynne Conner, Ph.D. (Oberlin, University of Pittsburgh) Chair
Todd Coulter, Ph.D. (St. Olaf, University of Colorado)
John D. Ervin, M.A. (Trenton State College [now known as The College of New Jersey], University of Maine at Orono)
Annie Kloppenberg, M.F.A. (Middlebury, Ohio State)
Olivia Kunst, M.F.A. (University of Utah)
James C. Thurston, M.F.A. (Ohio Wesleyan, Northwestern)
Bess Welden, M.F.A. (Oberlin, National Theater Conservatory)
The 2013-2014 Theater and Dance Season +
September 19: Big Mouth Thunder Thighs