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    Hamline University
    Jul 19, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Bulletin 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Bulletin [Archived Bulletin]

Performance, Production, and Community

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The department of Performance, Production, and Community provides courses of study as well as co-curricular activities to meet the interests of majors and the general student body. A number of courses in the department are open to all students who wish to explore theatre or dance  as an interest area. Advanced courses are usually open to students with appropriate prerequisites or experiences. Many of the courses in the department address Hamline Plan competencies.

Studies in performance, production, and community integrate aesthetic, humanistic, and social scientific perspectives in the exploration of this fundamental form of human expression. Grounded in theater and dance training and practice, the department encourages students to create across disciplinary boundaries. Students’ artistry and their creative and critical problem-solving skills will expand through strategic collaborations across the disciplines of dance, theatre, and music, with additional opportunities to make connections with students in creative writing, digital storytelling, and digital and studio arts. Ultimately, the program wishes to privilege how performance builds, serves, and engages community (on campus and beyond)  The department regularly encourages study abroad opportunities for students seeking to expand their understanding of the performing arts.

Postgraduate Opportunities

Students majoring in performance, production, and community pursue careers in teaching, professional or community theatre, or in the allied fields of television and film. The skills taught as part of the major have also equipped majors to enter the entertainment industry as producers, development directors for non-profit organizations, special event and convention planners as well as public relations specialists. Majors are encouraged to pursue graduate school opportunities in their respective fields of interest.

Hamline students are encouraged to participate in regional and national interviews and auditions for advanced training and professional work. The department offers regular workshops and review sessions to help prepare students to make the transition into a career.


The Hamline University Theatre mainstage performing facility is a fully equipped proscenium stage with continental seating for 300, computerized lighting control system, computerized sound recording and playback capability, orchestra pit, full flyloft, stage traps, a large scene shop with paint-frame, costume and lighting work rooms, dressing and makeup rooms, and Green Room. The Anne Simley Theatre is the site for all major productions and is used occasionally by outside professional theatre or dance companies.

A small flexible studio theatre is available in an adjacent building and is used for special projects in directing and design and as a performance space for one-act plays, readings, dance, and class activities. A well-equipped design classroom is used for classes in stagecraft and technical production courses.


Departmental faculty combine active professional work in their respective fields with their primary role as educators. All faculty in the department are involved in performance, directing, or design in the active Twin Cities theatre community.

Laura Dougherty, associate professor. BA 1997, Drew University; MFA 2003, PhD 2010, Arizona State University. Acting, directing, theatre and performance of the Americas, gender and sexuality in performance, social justice and civic action in/through performance.

Kaori Kenmotsu, senior lecturer. BA 1993, University of Minnesota; MFA 2002, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. JD 2022, Mitchell Hamline School of Law; Dance/Somatics educator, K-16; yoga instructor, professional dancer, actor, choreographer, and mediator. Teaching and research interests include dance, community engagement and the law, and embodied practices of conflict resolution.

Jeff Turner, professor, chair. AB 1984, Centre College; MA 1986, University of California-Los Angeles; MA 1991, Appalachian State University; PhD 2000, University of Colorado-Boulder. Teaching and research interests include American theatre history, directing, film studies, childhood studies, and popular culture studies.


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