David Humphrey is director for the Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University. With a doctorate in music education and opera production, Humphrey went on to become director of education for the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and director of San Francisco’s Museum of Performance & Design before coming to Ashland. We met at Pony Espresso Café in Ashland. This is the first of a two-part interview. The second will be published on Dec. 14.
EH: How did you become interested in an interdisciplinary approach to education in the arts?
DH: I started in music, but my interests grew very broadly. I really liked all the arts; I know so many young people do too. Art schools tend to keep students within specific disciplines and don’t allow them to explore other disciplines.
Students are multi-talented, and their choice of a specific area is based on very limited knowledge. They wind up in a particular discipline doing very well, but not quite suiting their personality. They need to find themselves. I believe if you can really understand who you are, and how the arts work, you can make a better decision. Continue reading SOU hopes to strike sparks between the arts→
Jackie Apodaca directs a new version by Libby Appel of Anton Chekov’s “Seagull,” now playing through Nov. 22 at the Center Square Theatre on the Southern Oregon University Campus. I saw an early run through and was impressed by the high quality of the rehearsal and the vibrant energy that propels the play. I met Apodaca at The Human Bean next to the library on the SOU Campus.
EH: What is the world of Chekov?
JA: Chekov is embracing the idea that everyone is the hero of their own tragic-comedy. The thing that is so fascinating about it is that it’s relatable, it’s about the type of issues that we all face. We think our lives are great dramatic love stories with triumphs and tragedies. We live our own lives that way. It’s the tiny things in our lives that take on such great importance, and that are ridiculous from the outside. You do get to very dramatic outbursts. It’s very naturalistic, in that we really do take those things so seriously. Continue reading SOU stages adaptation of Chekov’s ‘Seagull’→
James Donlon is directing “Caliban’s Dream” which opens Nov. 6 at Southern Oregon University’s Center Stage Theatre on the SOU campus. Donlon devised the script from Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.” With its imaginative framework, unique staging and iconic characters that morph through time, “Caliban’s Dream” promises to be a stimulating and unique theatrical experience.
Donlon, an assistant professor in SOU’s Theatre Arts Department, found his affinity for theater as an undergraduate while attending Humbolt State University on a basketball scholarship. Since then, he has shaped a long theatrical career that includes teaching at such prominent theater schools as The American Conservatory Theater, The Yale School of Drama and the University of California at Santa Barbara and San Diego. We lunched at the Standing Stone Brewing Company in Ashland. Continue reading Backstage: After the ‘Tempest’ – Caliban continued→