Directing Showcase allows students to present their work

Payton Core plays an eccentric old lady named Naomi in “Naomi in the Living Room” directed by Simone Odom.
Annie Goodman/The Lion’s Roar

Students had a chance to show their directing skills as their final for Chad Winters’ directing class.

An Evening of Theatre began with the 2017 Directing Showcase held Wednesday, May 3 at 7 p.m. in the Vonnie Borden Theatre.

“I thought they went very, very well,” said Winters. “It’s amazing. When it comes to putting on a show, the energy just comes together. Everything got a lot tighter and cleaner. I was very, very proud. We’ve been working all semester on the scenes.”




Harlan Thorpe, a freshman social work major liked the variety of scenes presented at the showcase.

“They were very different,” said Thorpe. “I like that each of them had their own unique theme. All of the directing showcases were very great.”

The showcase presented scenes from plays of varying genres.

“My two favorites were ‘Chicago’ and ‘Naomi in the Living Room,’” said Thorpe. “The Naomi one was a comedy. The actors did it very well, and I love ‘Chicago.’ It’s a musical. You can’t go wrong.”

Winters says the success of the class is independently driven.

“It’s always different,” said Winters. “I throw them into the ocean like, ‘Go off and rehearse. You have to find the time. Get you a cast together.’ No matter what, in the end, they always put in the time and work really hard to get it ready to showcase to the audience. So, they did an excellent job.”

Friends of the directors came to support them at the performance.

“I think each scene in the Directing Showcase was absolutely amazing,” said Bruce Javery II, a junior communication major. “I am so proud of Simone, Shelly, Taylor, Shirley and Jessica for casting the scenes, rehearsing the scenes, doing the set design, doing anything and everything to make each scene as spectacular as possible. I really enjoyed what they put together. It was kind of stressful for them, but they all pulled it together.”

Winters hopes to provide his students with the fundamentals necessary as a director.

“My goals for this class as an intro to directing is to have them leave the class with the basic building blocks of how you put on a show on the stage,” said Winters. “That’s really in the heart of it for me that when you take your first directing class, what are the building blocks and how does it come together? They get a lot of hands-on experience. Then as they grow, they get into more theory about what it is they are trying to do, but this class is about the principles of directing.”

Winters found his inspiration in exciting individuals about the art of acting.

“I think, for me, it’s about getting people excited about the art,” said Winters. “I get excited for young artists that are hungry and want to go out in the world and make a living doing this. I want to help them accomplish that.”

Justin Davis threatens to cut off his hand as he has a mental breakdown in “The Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo” directed by Taylor Sinclair
Annie Goodman/The Lion's Roar