NSU Playhouse expands
TNE Editor
/ Categories: Campus News

NSU Playhouse expands

Published 9/7/17

Tyler Utt

TNE Writer

After many years of awkward transitions and commuting, the NSU drama department was granted a new building connected to the NSU Playhouse on Muskogee Avenue. This new location will allow for new office space, optimal storage, easy transitions and increased opportunities for learning.

“This building will allow the drama program to operate under one roof again,” said Scott Pursley, auditorium manager. “Designing and building sets, props and lights will all happen in the same place. This allows us to spend more time teaching and learning and less time in transit. It will also allow the Sequoyah Institute to move in with us and have a fully functioning box office in the playhouse for the first time ever.”

The Sequoyah Institute is known for the River City Players but previously had to set up their box office in a location apart from the NSU Playhouse.

Pursley said they are still in early stages of planning but they will ideally be able to expand drama offerings. They hope to incorporate more screenings of plays and films that are broadcasted from all over the world.

The drama department has offered classes in digital filmmaking, but these classes and their activities were second in priority when it came to screenplays. Due to the stage being used for the semester plays, setting up a film studio for short films would never last. The classes would have to set up one day, break it down by the end of class and set up again the next day, hoping to keep continuity. The new building allows for a second set to stay in place throughout the duration of the production.

“It affects the drama program by giving us a shop with easy access to the stage, which means we can do some of the things we haven’t been able to do for a few years now by having that proximity,” said Chris Miller, associate professor of theatre.

Miller said they hope to incorporate more student projects such as screenplays and film projects throughout the semester. The NSU drama department puts on a live play every semester. In the past when the play season started, the main stage was used primarily for set building for the upcoming play. This would cause the classroom to lose some of its mobility. With the new building, the students will be able to be involved in more projects of their own, as they will have sufficient space to do so.

“It is a real timesaver,” said Matt Reif, Poteau junior. “Our old building is like a mile away, so the amount of time spent going back and forth would eat into rehearsal and preparing. Even if the extra building just ends up being a storage room, it will greatly benefit us in the long run.”

Reif said that, as a student, he looks forward to seeing how this will affect the drama department in the future.

NSU is continuing to expand programs and facilities for current and future colleges. The NSU drama department is just one of many future expansions to come.

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