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items tagged with Augustana College

Cut from Theatre Cloth: Broadway's Philip William McKinley Directs "Crème de Coco" at St. Ambrose
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2007-04-11 08:17:56

Phil McKinley For St. Ambrose University's forthcoming production of Crème de Coco - being performed at the Galvin Fine Arts Center from April 20 through 22 - the school recruited guest director Philip William McKinley to helm what will be the world premiere of William Luce's one-act play. During his area tenure, McKinley is also teaching an advanced acting course at St. Ambrose, and in a recent interview, the director explained why honesty is essential in eliciting the best work from performers:

"I think a lot of times, people tell them what they think they want to hear, rather than tell them what they really do need to hear. And if they know that you're telling them something to make them better, or for their own good, they're totally receptive to it."

That seems like a perfectly logical method for directing student actors. But, at this point in our conversation, McKinley wasn't referring to student actors. He was referring to Hugh Jackman.


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Capital Execution: "Dead Man Walking" at Augustana College through February 11
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2007-02-07 08:48:12

Kyle Roggenbuck and Brian Bengtson in With Tim Robbins' capital-punishment drama Dead Man Walking, Augustana College's theatre department has crafted a moving and impressive play, and I can't fully express how difficult that task must have been, because it really isn't a play; it's a screenplay. Scene for scene, sometimes even word for word, this 2002 piece replicates Robbins' 1995 movie to the letter, and in doing so, points out the deep chasm that exists between theatre and film. As a stage piece, Dead Man Walking shouldn't work, but director Jeff Coussens and his fiercely committed cast do everything in their power to keep you from noticing, and more often than not, succeed beautifully.


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Social Transformation: The Dead Man Walking School Theatre Project Comes to Augustana College
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2007-01-31 09:43:12

Brian Bengtson & Kyle Roggenbuck rehearse Explaining the decision to turn Tim Robbins' Oscar-winning Dead Man Walking into a work for the stage, Sister Maureen Fenlon begins with six simple words: "A stage play can go anywhere." And she would like the show to be seen everywhere.

"If you want to have a transformation," Fenlon continues, "a social transformation, then minds need to be engaged so they [people] can be open to learning, and hearts have to be opened so that that learning can go further, and seep into your own soul. When people's minds and hearts have been opened through the arts, the quality of your exchange is more than a conversation, it's surely not [merely] a debate ... and here, it's a powerful art form dealing with a very powerful issue."


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What Have We Learned?
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2006-12-20 08:41:51

"Much Ado About Nothing" In the realm of educational theatre, the audience's enjoyment should always be secondary to what the students take from their theatrical experiences. So I certainly hope that 2006's productions were meaningful for the students in Augustana College's, St. Ambrose University's, and Black Hawk College's theatre programs, because this particular audience member had a great time at their shows.


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Theatre Essentials 2006: A Dozen Names to Remember
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2006-12-20 08:31:16

Christine Barnes with Brian Cox and Brian Bengtson in "The Miser" Of course, the people who are most essential to the success of area theatre are the ones ponying up the dough to get it produced (and this includes you, my ticket-buying friends). But it's hard to imagine the theatre year being as enjoyable as it was without the contributions of the following 12 individuals, each of whom added considerable flair to several area productions - oftentimes at several area venues - in 2006.


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