Conservatory News and Events

Photo of Richard III Throws a big partyConservatory Students Present for Shakes38

Senior Directing major Melaina Ricks worked with her classmates to create and present as part of the Shakespeare Festival of St. Louis' annual Shakes38 event. Their project was entitled Richard III Throws A Big Party. Shakes38 presents the full Shakespeare canon in various incarnations all over town. 

Photo of Senior Performance ClassSeniors Prepare For New York and Los Angeles Showcases

Every year the entire senior class from the Conservatory head East for the New York Showcase. This year it's at The New World Stage, 340 W. 50th St. The acting performances will be March 14 at 5:30 and 7:30pm. Design/Tech/Stage Management/Directing Portfolios will be on display at 4:30pm. For more information click here.

Photo of Art Museum field tripSt. Louis Art Museum Field Trip

Costume Field trip to the St. Louis Art Museum to see DEGAS, Impressionism and the Paris Millinery Trade Art Exhibit. The St. Louis Art Museum is an easy drive from the Webster Groves campus. It has a wonderful collection of world class artists.

Photo of Trivia NightConservatory Trivia Night a Big Success

The Class of 2017 raised over $4,000 at their Trivia Night this past weekend! The money helps to fund the students’ trip to Los Angeles this May, where they will participate in a showcase for agents and industry professionals. Thank you to everyone who attended and supported our students’ efforts.

Photo of Phantom of the OperaVisiting Professor and Alum, Sam Fleming, in Playbill

Spring semester guest costume designer and conservatory alum Sam Fleming is quoted in a Playbill article about keeping Phantom of the Opera fresh after 20 years. Sam serves as the shows Associate Costume Designer. In the article, Sam starts off by stating, “The thing about Phantom [is] if you want the costumes to last a long time, you’ve got to use the right fabric.” We are very excited to have Sam with us this semester.

Photo of Accurst

Ashurst Wins USITT Prize

The Conservatory of Theatre Arts​ is very proud to announce that Robert Ashurst, Class of 2017, was recently awarded the W. Oren Parker Award from USITT (United States Institute for Theatre Technology). The annual award recognizes an outstanding undergraduate scene designer. The recipient of the W. Oren Parker Award must demonstrate excellence in areas such as composition skill, graphics ability, working with a director, craft work, computer applications, rendering, effective use of resources, research and personnel management. Most recently, Ashurst designed the set for the Conservatory’s production of Macbeth pictured here.

Picture of portfolio review

End Of Semester Showings And Portfolio Review

At the end of every semester all Conservatory students present their collective work. The actors, directors, and musical theatre majors perform their work as part of what is called "showings". This allows all of their classmates to share in the good work of the semester. The designers, technicians, stage managers, and directors present their work in a "portfolio review". All of the process ends with a celebratory reception in the studio theatre. The portfolio session is pictured above.

Photo of Dean Service Award recipients

Campbell wins Dean's Award for Service

Senior Dramaturgy major Jared Campbel (c.) is honored by receiving the Dean's Award for Service. The award is given to students who demonstrate outstanding service throughout the campus and their academic careers. Congratulations!

Photo of Peter SargentPeter Sargent, dean of Webster University’s Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts, will receive the 2017 Thomas DeGaetani Award, the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) announced this week. USITT is an association for performing arts and entertainment professionals. 

The national award is named after the first president of USITT. Past honorees include Cleveland’s Playhouse Square and Keven Myhre, the co-executive Producer at the Salt Lake Acting Company. The award annually honors an outstanding lifetime contribution to the performing arts or entertainment industry.

Dean Peter Sargent Honored

Photo of Muny Webster IntensiveMuny/Webster Intensive

Join America’s top young performers in a professional theatre training experience like no other. Share The Muny stage with Broadway and TV’s biggest stars. Get ready for a life changing experience. Challenge yourself with college level classes at the Conservatory of Theatre Arts at Webster University. Set your musical theatre career on the right path. Visit the Muny website for more information.

Photo of Christmas Carol rehearsalAssisting on the Rep's Christmas Carol

Junior directing major Gio Bakunawa (r.) serves as assistant director on the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis' production of A Christmas Carol. Directing the production is the Rep's artistic director Steve Woolf. Directing alum Michael Fling is back in the rehearsal hall serving as an assistant director working with the children in the show. 

Photo of Macbeth costume shop workThe Costume Shop Prepares for Macbeth

As the students work to prepare for the fall production of Macbeth, the shop is running at full speed to create clothing for the production. Pictured above is a small sample of the mountain of painting/dyeing/distressing needed to create the world of Macbeth. Photographing the heap of clothing is Maddie Weglarz, sophomore Wig and Makeup Design major serving as Crafts Head on the show.

Photo of Stupid F*cking BirdDirecting Seminar Staged Reading

Junior Brooke Viegut tackled Aaron Posner's Stupid F*cking Bird for her fall staged reading. Casting from among her classmates, the project is given a brief, simple staging. The presentation is part of classwork for the directing program, but it also provides actors with a chance to tackle complex and challenging roles.

Photo of After OrlandoWebster Students Present After Orlando at Arcade Building

A mixed group of Webster students presented ten short plays that combine to create a theatrical event called After Orlando. The project honors the memories of the 49 people killed in the Pulse nightclub in Orlando earlier in 2016. Professor Gad Guterman helmed the project in conjunction with Professor Robin Assner-Alvey from the art department. The performance happened in the gallery of Webster's new downtown campus at the Arcade Building.

Photo of voice classSophomores work with Professor Battles in Voice Class

Students in the Acting/MT programs of the Conservatory, study voice and speech on and off throughout their four years of study. Here sophomore Bradley Fertita works with Professor Joanna Battles on alignment and breath.

Photo of BudapestStudy Abroad in Vienna

Directing students Max Friedman and Melaina Ricks sent some photos from their fall studies in Vienna. Max wrote: "By far one of the coolest experiences in Budapest was sitting on the Green Bridge during the sunset with Hungarian locals. The crowd ranged from teens having a drink to full families spanning multiple generations enjoying the night. We saw so many bridal parties and people celebrating life as we picnicked on the bridge and it was absolutely amazing to experience local culture as the sun set on beautiful Budapest."

Photo of Costume Presentation

Slasher Costume Designer Presents Designs to the Crew

Before a costume build begins for a show, the costume designer introduces their designs to the crew who will build them. Here Slasher Costume Designer Bonny Green, introduces her designs. Here crew includes Costume Design Assistant-Tyler Arnold, Drapers-Claire Miller, Sarah Velling, First Hands-Sarah Lockwood, Emma Silva, Stitchers/Craft Artisans-Rachael Clayton, Tyler Tippet, Maddie Weglarz-Ward, and Wigs-Veronica Parcels.