Location: Bowdoin / Kathryn Syssoyeva

Theater and Dance

Kathryn Syssoyeva

Visiting Assistant Professor of Theater and Dance



Spring 2014

  • Interdisciplinary Performance-Making (DANC 2403)
  • Interdisciplinary Performance-Making (MUS 2503)
  • Theater of Action: Performance for Social Change (THTR 1503)
  • Interdisciplinary Performance-Making (THTR 2403)
  • Interdisciplinary Performance-Making (VART 2801)


Education

  • B.A.  Empire State College
  • Ph.D. Stanford

I teach both practical and academic aspects of theatre and performance: acting, play analysis, Russian expressive movement and Meyerhold’s biomechanics, directing and interdisciplinary devising, and theatre history, performance theory and drama.

Where applicable I teach traditionally: academic and artistic courses presented as discreet subjects. Where feasible, I teach an integrated approach to theatre-making, bringing together students with varied interests and backgrounds (design, directing, writing, performance, choreography, dramaturgy, stage management, etc), and incorporating aspects of both seminar and practicum. I have worked with a broad range of students: in conservatory programs, liberal arts divisions, and theatre-studios; with majors and non-majors; with doctoral candidates, MFAs, BFAs, and BAs; in state schools and private colleges and universities. 

I approach teaching from two, intersecting vantage points: as an artist, and as an educator in the university system. As a theatre-artist, I am committed to the potential of academia to nurture artistic experiment, and foster the integration of intellectual and aesthetic creativity. I seek to develop “actor-creators”, directors open to the generative capacity of performers and sensitive to the individuality of each actor’s process, and theatre-makers who place no preconceived parameters on their creative contribution to the theatrical event. I strive to foster thinking theatre artists: socially conscious, politically informed, historically literate.  And I teach that the art “of the future” is created in conversation with the art of the past; that theatre history is, in one of its aspects, a language of forms, to be studied, broken apart, reconfigured and transformed in present practice.

My directorial work is rooted in traditions of physical theatre, applied to both traditional drama and devised work.  My approach to actor training is a synthesis of internal and external methodologies: aspects of American method and Stanislavsky’s Active Analysis, and of Russian Movement (corporeal expression) and Biomechanics. My teaching is further inflected by notions of social mask (Meyerhold), gestus (Brecht), archetype and drag, and by Michel Saint-Denis’ approach to development of imagination.  I approach “physical theatre” as an aesthetic emphasis, rather than genre - with applicability to traditional dramaturgy, as well as to avant-garde and experimental playwriting, devised work, and non-text based performance.

As an educator, I am committed to fostering the role of theatre practice in the liberal arts curriculum, as a nexus of interdisciplinary learning (visual, literary and embodied practices, cultural history, and social awareness), and as a site of interdepartmental cooperation. I believe that, in an educational environment, theatre-making – practiced with rigor and commitment – constitutes a method of thinking through doing. In this context, I have a particular interest in collective creation and documentary theatre. Experience has demonstrated to me that collective creation inculcates creative autonomy, mutual responsibility, and collaboration; and that documentary theatre-making has deep potential as critical pedagogy, fostering social awareness and civic engagement, investigation, curiosity, discussion, debate.

THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED (ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ) BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA
THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED
(ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ)
BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA
A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET
DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA

THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED (ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ) BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA
THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED
(ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ)
BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA
A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET
DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA

THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED (ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ) BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA
THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED
(ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ)
BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA
A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET
DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA

THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED (ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ) BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA
THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED
(ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ)
BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA
A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET
DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA

THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED (ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ) BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA
THE ONE THAT GETS SLAPPED
(ТОТ КТО ПОЛУЧАЕТ ПОЩЕЧИНУ)
BY LEONID ANDREEV, TRANSLATED BY K.M. SYSSOYEVA
A CIRCUS-DRAMA-CABARET
DEVISED BY STUDENTS OF COLBY COLLEGE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF K.M. SYSSOYEVA