I was lucky enough to grow up at Saint Vincent. (My father was a member of the faculty for many years). Before I was even old enough to go to school, I was learning important lessons about faith, scholarship, community and hard work from the faculty, staff, students and Benedictine monks of Saint Vincent.
I received my B.A. in History from Williams College and my MFA in Film Production from The University of Southern California’s School of Cinema-Television (now called the School of Cinematic Arts). I have also been working as a professional theatre director for more than 14 years. Here at Saint Vincent I teach Film Studies and Acting classes. I also direct a student show every semester and serve as Artistic Director of Saint Vincent Summer Theatre, a professional theatre founded by the late Father Tom Devereux, O.S.B in 1969.
I love Saint Vincent’s
commitment to the Liberal Arts and the college’s support for theatre, even
though we don’t have a theatre department. Those two aspects combined mean that I teach and direct
students from a variety of academic backgrounds and with a variety of
extracurricular interests. My
Acting I class is usually full of athletes (most of whom usually do a fantastic
job). The cast of the student
musical I just directed included music majors, of course, but also Business,
Bio-Chem, and Psychology students.
Most of these students don’t plan on careers in the theatre, but they
love performing and they see involvement in the arts as an important part of a
full and balanced life. I love
I have lots of memorable
moments, and most of them involve students being brave. It takes courage to get up, in front of
a class or in front of an audience, and perform. I’m thinking of burly football players pretending to be
women, and soft-spoken freshmen figuring out how to project their voices so
they can be heard at the back of the theatre. And I’m thinking of weeks of hard work and dedication paying
off on opening night and the glowing look on a student’s face when he or she
comes off stage after making a hundred people laugh. Those are good moments.
Make the most of this time; it will go faster than you think. Accept the consequences of your
mistakes and learn from them; it will sting for a bit, but it will make you a
better, stronger, wiser human.
Don’t be afraid to ask your teachers for help; we love to help. Befriend a monk; monks are great.