Students participating in the Performance Design & Technology minor will find an equal respect for designers and technicians. Classes offered are equally distributed between design and technology subjects, with an emphasis on collaboration between the two.
Through both class work and shop hours, students learn the basic tools used in scenery construction, sound, lighting and costuming. Under the tutelage of full-time Technical Director Zachary Hamm, students can also take classes in advanced theatrical woodworking techniques, entertainment lighting electronics and specialized materials classes. Guest artists, including alumna mask and prop maker Jennifer McClure, have taught workshops in a variety of skills.
Our excellent costume shop supports the many productions offered in the Division of Performing Arts. Under the tutelage of costume shop manager Debra MacCrea, students gain hands-on experience in all phases of garment construction (and re-construction), participating in the process from design to construction to watching the garment on-stage. Classes in costume construction and specialized techniques are regularly offered.
Working with faculty and guest directors and designers, students have opportunities to collaborate and construct elements of designs in scenery, props, costumes, lighting and sound. Division of Performing Arts productions are supported by the scene and costume shops and by students working in the shops, in electrics, sound and props, and with front of house.
The Performance Design & Technology minor culminates in a capstone senior project. Students focusing on technology have opportunities to collaborate with guest and faculty designers to approach complex technical projects, with the support of faculty, staff and the relevant shops. These projects could be independent of a specific production or towards a larger design goal. Students working towards a technology capstone are expected to have significant roles on previous productions and to have experience backstage or in the shops prior to their senior project.
Student designers, managers and technicians may choose to present their work at the annual regional Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival and the USITT conferences. Several Performance Design & Technology students have been recognized at both the regional and national KCACTF conferences, including Allison Burrell for her costume designs of ALMOST, MAINE (2013-2014), Jen McClure for her craftsmanship for CLOUD NINE (2004-2005) and Jane Mahoney for her costume designs for THE ASH GIRL (2016-2017).
For additional information on this program, contact the Division Office via email or call 607.871.2562.