Location: Bowdoin / Theater and Dance / Courses / Spring 2012

Theater and Dance

Spring 2012


101. Cultural Choreographies: An Introduction to Dance
Nyama McCarthy-Brown M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55
Dancing is a fundamental human activity, a mode of communication, and a basic force in social life. Investigates dance and movement in the studio and classroom as aesthetic and cultural phenomena. Explores how dance and movement activities reveal information about cultural norms and values and affect perspectives in our own and other societies. Using ethnographic methods, focuses on how dancing maintains and creates conceptions of one’s own body, gender relationships, and personal and community identities. Experiments with dance and movement forms from different cultures and epochs—for example, the hula, New England contradance, classical Indian dance, Balkan kolos, ballet, contact improvisation, and African American dance forms from swing to hip-hop—through readings, performances, workshops in the studio, and field work.

111. Modern I: Technique
Gwyneth Jones M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25
Classes in modern dance technique include basic exercises to develop dance skills such as balance and musicality. More challenging movement combinations and longer dance sequences build on these exercises. While focusing on the craft of dancing, students develop an appreciation of their own styles and an understanding of the role of craft in the creative process. During the semester, a historical overview of twentieth-century American dance on video is presented. Attendance at all classes is required. May be repeated for credit. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

112. Modern I: Repertory and Performance
Gwyneth Jones M 2:30 - 3:55, W 2:30 - 3:55
Repertory students are required to take Dance 111 concurrently. Repertory classes provide the chance to learn faculty-choreographed works or reconstructions of historical dances. Class meetings are conducted as rehearsals for performances at the end of the semester: the December Studio Show, the annual Spring Performance in Pickard Theater, or Museum Pieces at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art in May. Additional rehearsals are scheduled before performances. Attendance at all classes and rehearsals is required. May be repeated for credit. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

211. Modern II: Technique
Gwyneth Jones T 1:00 - 2:25, TH 1:00 - 2:25
A continuation of the processes introduced in Dance 111. May be repeated for credit. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

212. Modern II: Repertory and Performance
Gwyneth Jones T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55
Intermediate repertory students are required to take Dance 211 concurrently. A continuation of the principles and practices introduced in Dance 112. May be repeated for credit. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

270. Choreography for Dancers: Invention, Method, and Purpose
Charlotte Griffin M 9:30 - 11:25, W 9:30 - 11:25
Through a vigorous sequence of creative projects, fluent dancers excavate sources and explore methods for making dance. Detailed work on personal movement vocabulary, musicality, and the use of multidimensional space leads to a strong sense of choreographic architecture. Students explore the play between design and accident—communication and open-ended meaning—and irony and gravity. Studio work is supported by video viewing, and readings on dance, philosophy, and other arts.

311. Modern III: Technique
Charlotte Griffin T 9:30 - 11:25, TH 9:30 - 11:25
A continuation of the processes introduced in Dance 211. May be repeated for credit. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

312. Modern III: Repertory and Performance
Charlotte Griffin T 1:30 - 3:25, TH 1:30 - 3:25
Intermediate/advanced repertory students are required to take Dance 311 concurrently. A continuation of the principles and practices introduced in Dance 212. May be repeated for credit. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.


101. Making theater
Elizabeth Marcus M 9:30 - 11:25, W 9:30 - 11:25
An active introductory exploration of the nature of theater: how to think about it, how to look at it, how to make it. Students examine a range of theatrical ideas and conventions, see and reflect on live performance, and experience different approaches to making work. Designers, directors, performers, and scholars visit the class to broaden perspective and instigate experiments. Students work collaboratively throughout the semester to develop and perform original work.

106. Introduction to Drama
Aaron Kitch M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25
Explores representative works from a wide range of genres and styles of theater, from the festival of Dionysus in ancient Greece through the Renaissance and into the global theater of the twenty-first century. Traces the evolution of plot design, with special attention to the politics of playing, the shifting strategies of representing human agency, and contemporary relationships between the theater and other visual media. Authors include Sophocles, Aristophanes, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Behn, Wilde, Beckett, Mamet, Wilson, and Churchill, with secondary texts by Aristotle, Brecht, Artaud, and Grotowski, among others. Students are asked to participate in staged readings during class and participate in group projects that imagine new ways to stage the plays we study.

120. Acting I
Abigail Killeen M 1:30 - 3:25, W 1:30 - 3:25
Introduces students to the intellectual, vocal, physical, and emotional challenge of the acting process. Students examine theatrical texts and practice the art of translating intellectual analysis into embodied performance. Fundamentals of text analysis are learned and practiced, preparing students for the more complex performance work required in all sections of Acting II.

195. Production and Performance
Abigail Killeen
Engagement in the presentation of a full-length work for public performance with a faculty director or choreographer. Areas of concentration within the production may include design, including set, light, sound, or costume; rehearsal and performance of roles; service as assistant director or stage manager. In addition to fulfilling specific production responsibilities, students meet weekly to synthesize work. Students gain admission to Theater 195 either through audition (performers) or through advance consultation (designers, stage managers, and assistant directors). Students register for Theater 195 during the add/drop period at the beginning of each semester. Students are required to commit a minimum of six hours a week to rehearsal and production responsibilities over a period of seven to twelve weeks; specific time commitments depend upon the role the student is assuming in the production and the production schedule. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit. May be repeated a maximum of four times for credit, earning a maximum of two credits.

201. Theater History and Theory
Roger Bechtel T 9:30 - 11:25, TH 9:30 - 11:25
Examines seminal historical moments in theater through a focus on such conceptual categories as representation and the real, politics and aesthetics, the body, visuality, spectatorship, and so on. Historical eras covered include ancient Greece, medieval Japan, Renaissance Europe, and romantic, modernist, and postmodernist Europe and America. Focus placed not on these individual moments per se, but on the effect of social and cultural pressures on the aesthetics of live performance across different times, cultures, and disciplines. Some time spent in the studio experimenting with historical forms.

210. Shakespeare's Comedies and Romances
William Watterson T 11:30 - 12:55, TH 11:30 - 12:55
Examines A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Twelfth Night, As You Like It, The Winter’s Tale, and The Tempest in light of Renaissance genre theory. Note: This course fulfills the pre-1800 literature requirement for English majors.

323. Acting Shakespeare
Roger Bechtel T 1:30 - 3:25, TH 1:30 - 3:25
An advanced-level acting course dedicated to the study of Shakespeare toward its original purpose: performance. Building on the skill sets learned in Acting I and both sections of Acting II, students combine advanced text and rhetorical analysis with rigorous physical and vocal work designed to bring the text off the page and into performance. May be repeated for credit.