10 Things You Didn’t Know About Robert Scott Smith

3 Oct , 2016  

Robert Scott Smith is a Visiting Assistant Professor  in the Actor Training Program this academic year. He graduated from the U with a BFA from the Actor Training Program, then went on to receive his MFA from the Old Globe University of San Diego. He is the Co-Artistic Director of Flying Bobcat Theatrical Laboratory and acted professionally in New York and Salt Lake City.

For those who know him and those don’t, here is a list of 10 things you probably didn’t know about Robert Scott Smith.


1. Scott is a Virgo, with a Capricorn rising and a Sagittarius Moon.
2. His go-to song is Madonna’s Holiday.
3. He is definitely a dog person.
4. His spirit animal is a bobcat.
5. After Scott did a scene in his very first acting class, Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple, he was sold on acting. It was the first time he realized how exhilarating, scary and rewarding acting could be. It was also the first time he felt like he belonged somewhere. Scott’s first play he was in was Child’s Play by Robert Marasco, he played Father Mozian. After being in his first play his love for acting really solidified and he said to himself, “you’ve got this”.
6. Scott is honored with the privilege of teaching at his alma mater. He never expected that he would be a teacher, let alone in the same program where he received his undergraduate degree. It is surreal for him when a student has a breakthrough just like he did in acting classes at the U. He is excited to continue this new passion that he has for teaching his craft.
7. The best advice that Scott has ever gotten is, “Respect the theatre, and it will respect you.” He said it is an all-encompassing statement. The theatre should be a respected space and you have to be willing to mop the floor. It’s not just about you being the star; there is team of people who have to work together to put on a show.
8. Scott has always had a great sense of exploration. From when he was 4 and he got lost in the Sawtooth National Forrest and found his way back to his parents to when he was 14 and spent a week being a Carnie in a traveling fair. From this exploration he developed a great sense of play and a willingness to lose himself.
9. Some of his dream roles include Tartuffe, the Nurse in Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet. Also, he’d love to work with Kidd Pivot, Frantic Assembly and Wooster Group.
10. One of his favorite, challenging and rewarding roles was playing Batboy in Batboy: The Musical


A new role for research: Sydney Cheek-O’Donnell Becomes New Associate Dean

18 Aug , 2016  


Associate Professor Sydney Cheek-O’Donnell, has been appointed to the position of the Associate Dean for Research in the College of Fine Arts, effective July 1, 2016. This is a new position in the college, and emphasizes the importance of faculty research at an R1 University.

As associate dean, Cheek-O’Donnell will be responsible for supporting research activities of the CFA faculty–including facilitating efforts to increase extramural funding. Additionally, Cheek-O’Donnell will continue to provide leadership for the CFA’s burgeoning Arts & Health Initiative.

Cheek-O’Donnell earned a PhD in Theatre History and Dramatic Criticism from the University of Washington’s School of Drama in 2004 and served as the Head of Theatre Studies at the University of Utah since 2005. She is a proud member of the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas and Editor of Review: The Journal of Dramaturgy.

In addition to her duties as associate dean, Cheek-O’Donnell will continue to serve part of her time in the Department of Theatre. In the department, she advises B.A. students and Theatre Minors, and teaches courses on Dramaturgy, Directing, Theatre and Theory, Gender on the Global Stage, Science on Stage, and the History of Theatre.

Please join us in welcoming Associate Dean Cheek-O’Donnell to this significant new role!

Original article can be found at The Finer Points.


Announcing the Department of Theatre’s 2016-17 Season

1 Aug , 2016  

Welcome to the 2016-17 Department of Theatre Season!

We kick off the season by returning to the Hayes Christensen Theater at the Marriott Center for Dance to open Bring It On: The Musical, with music and lyrics by three-time Tony Award Winner Lin-Manuel Miranda, best known for creating and starring in the Broadway musicals Hamilton and In The Heights.

We kick off the season by returning to the Hayes Christensen Theater at the Marriott Center for Dance to open Bring It On: The Musical, with music and lyrics by three-time Tony Award Winner Lin-Manuel Miranda, best known for creating and starring in the Broadway musicals Hamilton and In The Heights.

Highlights from the 2016-17 theatre season include Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia; Self Defense, or death of some salesmen, inspired by the true story of American serial killer Aileen Wournos; the musical Dogfight by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Peter Duchan; and Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed, a play about the Liberian Civil War with an all-black female cast, which played on Broadway Spring of 2016.

In April, we conclude the season with the premiere of The Two Noble Kinsmen written by William Shakespeare and John Fletcher, translated by professor Tim Slover and dramaturged by Martine Kei Green-Rogers as part of the 36 new plays translated into modern English as part of the Play On! Project by Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

The Department of Theatre strives to maximize the access, interest and impact of theatre for our diverse audiences. The productions will ignite exciting dialogue through talkbacks, panel discussions and other artist interface opportunities. This season will be everything you have hoped for and nothing like you expected.

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Bring It On: The Musical
Bitingly relevant, sprinkled with sass, and inspired by the hit film, Bring It On. The Musical takes audiences on a high-flying journey filled with the complexities of friendship, jealousy, betrayal, and forgiveness. Uniting some of the freshest and funniest creative minds on Broadway, Bring It On features an original story by Tony Award winner Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q), music and lyrics by Tony Award-winning composer Lin-Manuel Miranda (In The Heights, Hamilton), music by Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning composer Tom Kitt (Next To Normal), lyrics by Broadway lyricist Amanda Green (High Fidelity) and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Musical.

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Self Defense, or death of some salesmen

A hitchhiking, highway prostitute is turned into a nation–wide celebrity when she is arrested for the murder of seven men. Is she the nation’s first female serial killer, as the media paint her, or a victim? Self Defense gives a long, hard look at an America most of us don’t want to admit exists.

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This vibrant play moves effortlessly between the centuries and explores the nature of truth and time, the difference between classical and romantic temperaments, and the disruptive influence of sex on our life orbits, the attraction Newton left out.

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On the eve of their deployment to a small but growing conflict in Southeast Asia, three young Marines set out for one final boys’ night of debauchery, partying and maybe a little trouble. But when Corporal Eddie Birdlace meets Rose, an awkward and idealistic waitress he enlists to win a cruel bet with his fellow recruits, she rewrites the rules of the game and teaches him the power of love and compassion.

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Based on the real life stories of the women and girls who helped bring peace to the African nation of Liberia during its second civil war, Eclipsed doesn’t only capture a piece of untold history, it’s also making it. Eclipsed became the first play with an all-black and female creative cast and team to premiere on Broadway in 2015.

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The Two Noble Kinsmen
Two cousins, Palamon and Arcite are captured while fighting for Thebes against Athens. While imprisoned, they find themselves attracted to Emilia, who is the sister of Hippolyta, wife of Theseus. The Two Noble Kinsmen is one of 39 plays to be translated and adapted for Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s three-year Play On! project. This production will be translated by playwright Dr. Tim Slover and the dramaturgist is Dr. Martine Kei Green-Rogers.


by Josiane Dubois