Department News (5-4-15)

The London Study Abroad group, with George Nelson and Frank Christiansen (English) as the faculty leaders,  had their first class today and are beginning their 17-play excursion. There are 33 students total. This week they will see the world premiere of Behind the Beautiful ForeversMan and SupermanRomeo and Juliet, and Macbeth. Below is a photo of the group.
George Nelson led workshops and classes in schools and prisons in Poland this last week. The workshops were well received, and about 250 people attended. His play Single Wide is now being translated into Polish for a possible production that George will direct for the Polish National Theatre next year.

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Ten members of Divine Comedy took their annual workshop trip last week.  The group attends professional comedy workshops in metropolitan comedy centers each year at the end of Winter term.  This year, the group went to New York.  They attended three different day-long workshops.  The first workshop was with Rachel Rosenthal at the People’s Improv Theatre (PIT) where the group worked on Improv as a springboard to character development and writing. The second workshop was with Joe Galan at the PIT, where the group worked on writing.  Joe helped the group with writing exercises, strategies for unblocking writers block, and collaborative writing.  Finally the group worked withStephen Rosenfield of the American Comedy Institute on strategies for rewriting sketches and situational prompts to explore characters.  We also met with a DC alumnus,Brian Havig, who has been working in the stand up comic scene in NY for the past 8 years.  He encouraged the group to keep working on their clean comedy brand.  From his experience, clean comedy, especially family friendly comedy is not only a market that could be more developed, but is desperately needed.  Students that attended includedKenny Baldwin, Kevin Baldwin, Bryson Frehner, Matt Moen, Brad Wilcox, Becca Daun, Emily Hein, Sarah Thompson, McKay Jacobsen, and Tori Pence.   The group was also able to attend two Broadway musicals, An American in Paris and A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder.  Elizabeth Funk joined the group as their advisor, sinceGeorge was in Poland. IMG_9834

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Last week, thirteen seniors graduating in BFA Acting and BFA MDT traveled to New York for the fourteenth annual NY showcase, led by Tim Threlfall and Gayle Lockwood.  Students showcased their talents to agents n the June Havoc Theatre in the afternoon and early evening of last Tuesday, April 28.  The following students performed: Ali Kinkade, Brian Carey, Shae Robins, Cameron Smith, Jenna Hawkins, Julia Richardson, Caroline Lambert, Jake Swain, Whitney Uland, Reba Johnson, Preston Yates, Jaymie Lambson, and MacKensie Foster.  For more information about each of these amazing students, go to www.byushowcase2015.com

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Jennifer Reed and student stage managers Brittany Corbett, Cyrsta Powell, Heather Richardson, and Carson Wright took a trip to New York this last week to take backstage tours and see take to professional stage managers. During their visit, they met the esteemed Broadway stage manager, Peter Lawrence and LDS stage manager, Lizzie Robinson, who talked about how to balance work life and church life. The students saw five Broadway shows and  were also able to attend the Broadway Theatre and hear the Tony’s announced!
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