News

The Department of Theater Studies at Duke University recently presented six undergraduates with awards celebrating ongoing achievements in the discipline. Awards and recipients: Harold Brody Award for Excellence in Musical Theater awarded to Multy Oliver Recognizes accomplishments in musical theater by students in the Department of Theater Studies, the Department of Music, or the student-run musical theater group Hoof 'n' Horn. The award was established by an alumnus with a deep affection for and… read more about Theater Studies Annual Awards »

DukeArts spoke with Duke seniors and Theater Studies majors Ash Jeffers and María Zurita Ontiveros about their paths to theater, and how they are leading the production of MEDEA – the first mainstage Theater Studies production with students at its helm. Read the full article at DukeArts. read more about Medea Would Not Be Denied »

A March 24 panel discussion in response to the increase of violence against people of Asian descent, including the mass shootings in Atlanta earlier this month, attracted more than 670 Duke faculty, staff and students. Moderated by Nayoung Aimee Kwon, the online event featured presentations on the historical context of anti-Asian violence from Susan Thananopavarn, Eileen Chow and Esther Kim Lee. Syllabus on Asian-American History and Culture In response to recent acts of violence against Asian Americans stemming from a… read more about The History of Violence Against Asian Americans »

Summer Session I (May 12-June 21) THEATRST 145S-01 ACTING  MTuWThF 11:00AM - 12:15PM  Jeff Storer Codes: AL; CCI  SYNCHORNOUS ONLINE    Using the writings of Sarah Ruhl, Qui Nguyen, August Strindberg, Konstantin Stanislavsky, Suzan Lori-Parks, Anna Deavere Smith, Caryl Churchill, Anne Bogart and Jose Rivera students will explore the fundamentals of acting realism through assigned readings, writing prompts, performance exercises, scene study, and text analysis. A balance between weekly reading assignments,… read more about Summer Session I & II »

KARI BARCLAY, Theater Studies '16, has been named the winner of the inaugural So.Queer Playwrights’ Festival, sponsored by the Richmond, VA, Triangle Players.  Read the full story in the Stanford News >>> read more about Kari Barclay (TS '16) Wins So.Queer Playwrights’ Festival »

Part of our “Art and Artists are Essential” collection and invitation. “I started writing music over winter break from home. I met Robbie Rosen, a producer and American Idol finalist, who helped me write original songs for the first time! This is a song about being stuck between two places, and I think every Duke student has felt this in some capacity, especially during the pandemic. We were back in our hometowns for longer than we are used to, and many of us are questioning where we feel most at home. I feel really… read more about Sophia Roth ‘22: “Between Two Worlds” »

The Department of Theater Studies at Duke University in Durham, NC invites applications for an Artist in Residence to begin July 2021. This full-time, one-year position is intended for a recent graduate of an MFA program (2019 or later preferred) in either Acting or Directing; the position requires an MFA at the time of hire along with membership in AEA, SAG-AFTRA, or SDC. Job duties will include a 2/1 teaching load in small laboratory-based acting classes as well as ancillary coaching in the successful candidate’s areas of… read more about Job Announcement: Artist in Residence »

Duke baseball player Ollie McCarthy pens an article in UNCUT discussing how he was able to juggle athletics and the acting bug. "I dreamt of acting in serious productions; however, as an athlete, it seemed like a distant dream," he wrote. Read his full story in UNCUT. read more about Lights, Camera, Action »

The Department of Theater Studies at Duke University in Durham, NC invites applications and nominations for an open-rank Visiting Professor or an Instructor to begin July 2021. The field is Musical Theater. This full-time, one-year position requires a PhD in Theater History or a related field at the time of hire. The 2/2 teaching load will include both scholarly and laboratory-based classes in musical theater, so the ability to bridge theory to practice is essential; the ability to teach a more general… read more about Job Announcement: Visiting Professor or Instructor/Musical Theater »

The Department of Theater Studies at Duke University in Durham, NC invites applications for a Visiting Professor or an Instructor to begin July 2021. The field is Acting. This full-time, one-year position requires an MFA or related terminal degree in the field at the time of hire. The 2/2 teaching load will include small laboratory-based courses in stage acting and Black theater and performance; the ability to teach screen acting or to direct productions would be an asset. If hired as a Visiting Professor, the successful… read more about Job Announcement: Visiting Professor or Instructor/Acting »

FINDING CREATIVE WAYS TO ENSURE THE SHOW GOES ON While the pandemic has changed the way Duke’s Theater Studies Department works, it hasn’t derailed the group’s creative spirit. Over three nights in November of last year, eight students – six of them actors - from Duke and North Carolina Central University joined with artists from the Durham community to produced “Citizen: An American Lyric” for an audience that watched online. “The students really appreciated how incredible it was to be in person and… read more about Dedicated Devils: Rising to the Challenge During COVID-19 »

In this interview, Chaz Hawkins ’17, screenwriter at Heroes and Villains Entertainment, shares his experience as a Duke student, discusses his transition into the film industry, and offers advice for students interested in pursuing careers in creative industries. Recently, his screenplay “The Sauce” was selected for this year’s The Black List, an annual survey of the “most-liked” motion picture screenplays that have not yet been produced. What are 2-3 ways your Duke experience helped prepare you for your current career role… read more about Q&A with Chaz Hawkins ‘17, Screenwriter at Heroes and Villains Entertainment »

It’s been a busy three years at Duke for Theater Studies Professor Esther Kim Lee. Along with her appointment in Theater, she holds positions in International Comparative Studies and Asian American and Diaspora Studies—and she was the faculty director for the Focus Program’s new Immigration and Citizenship cluster for the fall semester.  The Focus Program (FOCUS) allows first-year, first-semester students to study a topic from multiple perspectives through interdisciplinary clusters of no… read more about FOCUS on Asian American Experiences Through Performance »

Do you still need a course for Spring? We have several classes for you to consider—including the newly added Shakespeare Studio.  Questions? Please contact: coco.wilder@duke.edu.     Shakespeare Studio | THEATRST 246S (Newly added) on-campus and online F 10:15am-12:45pm Instructor: Avery Glymph   In addition to his extensive stage work on numerous Shakespeare productions, Avery Glymph has appeared in various films and television shows including Bull (upcoming), Law & Order, Madam Secretary, and Out and… read more about Spring Course Spotlight »

Last year, five Duke University faculty members set out to build skills and add new dimensions to their work. In these excerpts from their Faculty Teaching/Research Enhancement Grants (FTREG) reports, they share what they undertook and how these experiences will help them and their students. Improvisation Jody McAuliffe, Theater Studies and Slavic & Eurasian Studies, Trinity College of Arts & Sciences I took the Summer Intensive in improvisation offered at the iO Theater in Chicago. Widely considered the premier… read more about Five Scholars Find Creative Ways to Strengthen Their Research and Teaching »

Audition for the Theater Studies Spring Mainstage: MEDEA Directed as a senior distinction project by Maria Zurita Ontiveros and designed by Ash Jeffers November 7 and November 8, 4:00-7:00pm via Zoom. Follow this link for more info on how to audition, sides, and signups: http://bit.ly/MainstageMedea About MEDEA, by Euripides: This is a border zone, with Corinth a thriving place but poverty and loss beyond its walls. Medea, an immigrant who abandoned her family and her homeland to follow… read more about Auditions for Spring Mainstage: MEDEA »

As part of its event series tgiFHI, the Franklin Humanities Institute is conducting interviews with its faculty speakers in order to familiarize broader audiences with the diversity of research approaches in the humanities, arts, and interpretive social sciences at Duke University. Dr. Darren Gobert is the William and Sue Gross Professor of Theater Studies and Professor of English. In this edited and condensed interview, he describes the process of reconstructing and imagining the unknowable in performance studies, the way… read more about Meet Your Humanities Faculty: Darren Gobert »

Years ago, Theater Studies Professor Neal Bell was asked to do a complete screenplay overhaul of a horror movie being shot in Toronto. The director, who shared a similar theater background, remembered that Bell was a horror buff, so he flew him to Canada to see the finished movie sets (mainly those of a shady hospital). Then, the producers informed him that he had a mere two weeks to write a completed screenplay. While Bell always loved movies, he’d never written a screenplay—so he pulled a 14-day version of an all-nighter… read more about Here, There Be Monsters »

Years ago, Theater Studies Professor Neal Bell was asked to do a page-one rewrite (or complete screenplay overhaul) of a horror movie being shot in Toronto. The director, who shared a similar theater background, remembered that he was a horror buff, so he flew Bell to Canada to see the finished movie sets (mainly those of a shady hospital). Then, the producers informed him that he had a mere two weeks to write a completed screenplay. While Bell always loved movies, he’d never written a… read more about Bell Examines the Quality of Writing That Goes into the Films that Scare Us »

This fall semester, Duke Kunshan University lecturer Ashton Merck will be communicating with her students more than usual.   She plans to check in with her students early and often through WeChat messages, email, and virtual office hours. Merck hopes that by staying in contact, students will feel more connected to the course and to each other, no matter where they are in the world.    “I think that especially in this stressful time, instructors have a responsibility to open up lines of communication that students feel… read more about How Duke Faculty Prepared for the Fall Semester »

        CALL FOR OPEN AUDITIONS CITIZEN: AN AMERICAN LYRIC by Claudia Rankine Adapated for the stage by Stephen Sachs Directed by JaMeeka Holloway-Burrell August 20-26 9am-2pm Additional times are available, please email: jameekaholloway@gmail.com     Roles available: Citizen 1: female, Black Citizen 2: female, Black Citizen 3: male, Black Citizen 4: male, Black Citizen 5: female, white… read more about Open Auditions for CITIZEN: AN AMERICAN LYRIC »

A traditional Theater Studies mainstage course (THEATRST 350) would provide students the chance to participate in the department’s major production for the semester, with a faculty member not only teaching the course, but also directing. Classwork would focus on analyzing, researching, and producing a play, with students auditioning for roles and rehearsing lines well into the fall. Costumes and sets would be built and props gathered—all culminating in a multi-week public performance on a stage at the Bryan Center… read more about Theater Studies Mainstage Addresses Racism Against Black America  »

August 12 2:00-3:00pm   Welcome to Duke! We’d like you to join us for our annual Open House. You don’t have to be a Theater Studies major/minor to attend. This is a great opportunity to speak with students and faculty, learn about our courses and productions, and find YOUR home in theater. Breakout rooms created based on your interests.   To RSVP, please email coco.wilder@duke.edu Zoom link: https://duke.zoom.us/j/98645290903 read more about Theater Studies Virtual Open House »

The faculty and staff of Theater Studies stand in solidarity with those protesting the country’s systemic racism and anti-Black violence.  We recognize that theater has historically exploited artists of color and that institutions of theater have marginalized artists and audiences of color. We also acknowledge that theatrical representations and performances have been deployed perniciously to create and perpetuate both explicit and implicit racial hierarchies. At the same time, artists of color have developed powerful… read more about Theater Studies Statement in Support of Black Lives »

If you asked Theater Studies instructor Talya Klein in March how she and her students in “Acting for the Camera” were adjusting to remote learning, Klein would have admitted to a lofty goal. She hoped to have a feature film completed as a final project to an anomalous semester. “We’ll see,” she said. “I don’t know what May will bring, where we’ll be, or what the film will look like—but we have to try.” While the Duke community finished spring semester from home and celebrated graduates by Marking the Moment, Klein’s… read more about Filmmaking and Social Distancing: When "Going Viral" is a Good Thing »

If you asked Theater Studies instructor Talya Klein in March how she and her students in “Acting for the Camera” were adjusting to remote learning, Klein would have admitted to a lofty goal. She hoped to have a feature film completed as a final project to an anomalous semester. “We’ll see,” she said. “I don’t know what May will bring, where we’ll be, or what the film will look like—but we have to try.” While the Duke community finished spring semester from home and celebrated graduates by Marking the Moment, Klein’s… read more about Filmmaking and Social Distancing: When “Going Viral” is a Good Thing »

Duke faculty teaching visual arts, music, and theater share how they navigated the move to online teaching. It wasn’t easy. Supplies were mailed, collaborative projects were reinvented. Transformations and solutions discovered this spring have expanded the teaching repertoire—even as we look forward to safely returning to studio and stage. Sending the Art Studio Home to Students To really see a painting, print, or drawing is to notice its details—the quality of a particular brushstroke, the subtle distinctions in hue, the… read more about How Do You Teach Art & Collaborate Remotely? »