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2013 – 2014 Theatre Arts & Dance Season Highlights

The Department of Theatre Arts & Dance would like to thank all the students, donors, patrons, and friends who made the 2013-2014 Season a tremendously successful year.

Our season was dynamic and eclectic, ranging from the avant garde, contemporary and outrageous to a timeless classic musical production. Over 50 performances were staged this past year, with nearly 8000 patrons attending. In addition, our faculty, guest artists and staff worked collaboratively to produce and host several additional performances, including AXIS Dance, Paris-based Prospero Miranda Theatre Company, the Weill Hall Artists-in-Residence Trio Ariadne, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, SoCo Dance and more.

None of this could have been accomplished without the genuine enthusiasm, creativity, collaboration, and tireless commitment of all those involved – especially that of our bright and talented students. Their creative endeavors at Sonoma State University inspire and elevate the quality of our programs every year, drawing even more young performers to our stages. Our heartfelt thanks to the families of our students for your generous support of our tremendous accomplishments this year.

We wish everyone a fun and safe summer, and look forward to seeing you in the Fall!

Thanks for making it a great season!


Graduates and Alumni
Dance Highlights
Acting Program Highlights
Technical Theatre & Design Season
Theatre Studies Highlights
Capital Improvements


 

CONGRATULATIONS and BEST WISHES to our GRADS!


Heather Radovich and Michelle Dokos
Distinguished Students of the Year

Colette Bakke, Samantha Corona, Dominic Dei Rossi, Michelle Dokos, Phillip Ferrero, Anthony Finley, Alexis Garibaldi, Stephanie Halbert, Ashley Kimball, Helen Valerie Leibman, Walter Lopez, Vanessa McCormick, Laura Millar, Alexxandra Oddenino, Heather Radovich, Patrick J. Reilly, Noelle Rodriguez, Ashley Rollins, Rebecca Schibler, Laura Tuffnell, Nichele Van Portfleet, Zane Walters

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?

  • Celine Delcayre (2013) -- Literary Associate for the Eugene O'Neill Theater, Center in Waterford, CT; also a Kennedy Center award recipient while at SSU.
  • Dylan Waite (2013) – Current member of the Writer's Pool for Playground SF.
  • Lisa “Kiki” Kusanagi -- Former dance student and originally from Japan, is working on her graduate degree at Hollins College/ADF in North Carolina. Making new works and performing festivals along the East Coast this summer.
  • Margot Manburg (2012) -- Literary Manager for Playwrights Foundation, SF
  • Autumn Mirassou (2011), went on to attend the Central School of Speech & Drama in London (alumni include Sir Laurence Olivier, Judy Dench), now residing in NYC.
  • Patrick Alparoni (Acting 2004) – currently performing in 36 Stories by Sam Shepard at Word for Word Performing Arts Company (May 21 –June 22) at Z Below Theatre in SF. Patrick is also teaching a musical workshop at Berkeley Rep.

 

DANCE HIGHLIGHTS

Spring Dance 2014

  • Soundscape Project merged art and science into a multi-media dance performance in November with a special performance on Dec. 6 at GMC’s Weill Hall. Generously supported by the Green Music Academic Integration Fund and the Community Foundation of Sonoma County.
  • 23 dancers and 2 dance faculty members attended the American College Dance Festival Association’s West Regional Conference in March at Arizona State University. SSU’s Dance Program took three dances to the conference, two were performed in the Adjudicated Concert and one dance was performed in the Informal Concert. Christine Cali’s Suspect was chosen for inclusion in the closing night GALA concert, a presentation of dances selected for their exemplary artistic quality. 
  • The Fall Dance Faculty and Guest Artist Concert featured work by Christine Cali, Kristen Daley, Rogelio Lopez, Risa Jaroslow and original music from Jesse Olsen Bay. In April, the Spring Dance Student Concert featured 15 student choreographers with 60 student dancers.
  • SSU Dance hosted the Alonzo King LINES Ballet Residency in April, which included three master classes taught by Alonzo King (AKLB Artistic Director), Arturo Fernandez (AKLB Ballet Master), and Babatunji (AKLB Dancer); a guest lecture on Alonzo King’s Repertory by Molly Rogers; as well as open rehearsals and a free performance of a work in progress.
  • Dance Master Classes by Jorge Vazquez, Nhan Ho and Anne-Rene Petrarca.
  • Film Screening and Panel Presentation of the dance film Well Contested Sites by Amie Dowling, Reggie Daniels and Marielle Amrhein.

 

ACTING PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

She Kills Monsters

  • In the fall The Acting Program successfully mounted Melanie Marnich’s BLUR, directed by guest artist Jennifer King, Artistic Director at Napa Valley College. The cast was then invited to remount BLUR at NVC in January.
  • It was all hands on deck in March for the mounting of She Kills Monsters by Qui Nguyen, directed by program head, Paul Draper.
  • In April the Acting Block showcased Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors, led by guest resident Dario Tangelson, who trained SSU Block actors for six weeks employing his highly physical approach to text.
  • The Acting Program also undertook an exchange with actors from the Oakland School for the Arts. Draper taught commedia del arte to 15 OSA actors, who visited Sonoma State on two occasions to partner with Acting Block students and share scene work in a mutual exchange.  

 

 



 

TECHNICAL THEATRE & DESIGN SEASON

The Ghost Sonata

  • Ashley Williams shined as student costume designer for BLUR, directed by Jennifer King and co-produced at NVC in January.
  • The Ghost Sonata showcased two seniors, Michelle Dokos as Costume Designer and Walter Lopez as Lighting Designer.
  • She Kills Monsters tech students, led by Puppetry Consultant & Fabricator Mary Nagler and Set & Prop Designer Michelle Dokos, constructed the “TIAMAT,” a giant five-headed dragon.
  • Student lighting designers Michael Ackley, Soren Carey, Jenny Nguyen, Patrick Szczotka and Walter Lopez lighted Spring Dance 2014. The Advance Tech class did the Hang and Focus.
  • Tech Olympics event with the OSA students.
  • Long-time Costume Shop Manger Maureen O’Sullivan retired this year.  An artistically spirited individual, Maureen demonstrated an untiring work ethic and loyalty to student training during her years of service. We wish her the very best!

 

 

 




 

THEATRE STUDIES HIGHLIGHTS

August Strindberg

  • Dark and daring, The Ghost Sonata by August Strindberg, was directed by Judy Navas in the fall. Polly want a cracker?
  • 120 freshmen created 25 site-specific visual art projects, inspired by international artist Andy Goldsworthy, as part of a Freshman Learning Community course led by Judy Navas, Scott Horstein and Christine Cali.
  • Student dramaturg Laura Millar was selected as one of three national dramaturgy winners at Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival
  • Student playwright Jenna Lawrence was a regional semi-finalist at Kennedy Center festival for "Welcome to the Darkness."
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CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS

New Look Person Theatre

  • A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on opening night of “Fiddler on the Roof” for the newly refurbished Evert B. Person Theatre. Upgrades included fresh paint, retro lobby furniture, new curtains and reupholstered theatre seating. Special thanks to SSU President Ruben Armiñana, School of Arts & Humanities Dean Thaine Stearns, SSU Provost Andrew Rogerson, SSU CFO Larry Furukawa-Schlereith, CPA Production Manager Juliet Pokorny, The Department of Theatre Arts & Dance Faculty, and SSU Enterprises.
  • State-of-the-art bamboo-sprung flooring was installed in PE01, as well as upgraded lighting and heating.
  • New dimmers and curtains were installed in Ives Studio 76, while new curtains were hung in Studio 119 that will enhance presentation capabilities.