Opportunities for Involvement in all Disciplines
There are numerous ways to participate in our work at the Department of Theatre and Dance. If you are not immediately cast in a faculty-directed production, we highly encourage you to stay connected. Watch for the many opportunities in student-directed and student choreographed shows. Work back stage and get to know the actors, tech and crew folks and directors. Volunteer for a light hang, and build your way toward lighting design. Check out the social justice theatre group, I Am We Are, and the Theatre House (Peterson House) for other ways to get involved.
- The theatre program annually produces four main stage shows in a wide variety of styles and genres. Every other year we do a musical, which is rehearsed during January Term and performed in February.
- Auditions usually take place during the first week of each semester, although occasionally auditions for an early spring term production will be held before the end of fall term. Students interested in auditioning are encouraged to read the play before the audition and, whenever possible, to prepare a short memorized monologue of their own choosing. Specific audition information is posted prior to all audition dates. Be sure you’re signed up the Plaything e-mail list and the Theatre/Dance Facebook for up-to-the-minute information.
- Audition Help can be found at the Theatre House (Peterson House) where theatre folks hold audition workshops each semester and are happy to help you find or practice a monolog.
Advanced Theatre students create a number of projects each year that need actors, designers, stage managers and technicians. Alternate (even) years, the department sponsors a Theatre Gallery with a number of one-act plays directed by students. The opposite year will feature a Festival of 10-minute Plays directed by members of the directing class. They are always looking for dedicated actors.
Social justice theatre
I Am We Are holds workshops and auditions each year for students interested in joining that social justice theatre group. Watch for performances and announcements, and feel free to approach a member of the group with any questions.
Social Justice Soup is an annual showcase for work by the Creating Social Justice Theatre class and other interested performers. Spoken word, monologs, songs, scenes are all welcome.
There are two dance companies at Gustavus. Auditions for the Gustavus Dance Company and the Gustavus Apprentice Dance Company are held the last week of classes during Spring Semester for returning students, and during first year orientation for first year students.
The annual spring dance concert is a fully produced set of work, and features work of faculty choreographers, guest artists, and select student work.
In odd years (for example, Fall of ’09) Choreographer’s Gallery presents select works of advanced choreography students. This opportunity is by application, due in the previous spring. Talk to your advisor for more information. Auditions for these projects are open to all interested dancers (membership in a Gustavus company is not required). Auditions are held in the beginning of the fall semester.
A student-directed showcase for new dance and theatre pieces, offered in late fall or late spring. Shared Space is a great place to experiment or get started with the idea of choreography. Auditions are announced early in the semester, and all are invited to give Shared Space a whirl.
In even years, a format for emerging choreographers is presented in Shared Space. Fall semester features at least one concert of student choreography.
Further participation opportunities are offered during the year through alternative, experimental, or student-produced projects, Advanced Research projects and Honors projects. Specific audition information is posted prior to all audition dates
Design and Technology
Students can work as designers, design assistants, carpenters, electricians, stitchers, and backstage crews for both department and student productions. To participate as a designer or design assistant in the area of scenery, costumes, lighting, or sound students must complete an application in consultation with the area advisor; this must be done in the spring previous to the year the student would like to design or assist. Designers and design assistants will then be chosen based on the criteria and questions listed in the application. Students interested in working in one of the production shops should talk to the head of the shop in their area of interest. Students are interested in working backstage on Department productions should speak with a faculty member or our technical director.
Student-produced work often provides excellent opportunities for student designers and technicians as well as for performers and directors. Watch for the chance to work with Shared Space, Honors Projects, One-acts, I Am We Are and other projects in need of creative support in costumes, lighting, sets or sound. These groups will often be quite grateful when you offer to get involved.
Students annually produce plays and dance concerts. This offers opportunities to majors and non-majors as actors, dancers, and others interested in being part of the technical crew. There are also student organized groups (like I Am We Are and Shared Space) which present additional opportunities for student involvement. Specific information is posted prior to all audition dates.