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Remote Teaching with Performing Arts

students presenting "Ghostbuster" assignment
Students Grace Zaborski (left) and AJ Bloomfield (right) present their work for the Ghostbusters assignment.

April 23, 2020

The faculty of the Department of Performing Arts have swiftly adapted to the remote teaching environment, offering creative possibilities that compensate for in-person collaboration.

Mandell Theater Technical Director Chris Totora is teaching Theatre Production this term, and he is encouraging students to get creative with their projects. Last week, while covering props construction, Chris challenged students to recreate one of the most iconic movie props of all time: the Proton Pack from Ghostbusters, using materials found in their homes.

Kalila Kingsford Smith, Assistant Director for the Drexel Dance Ensemble, is leading the company class through a movement version of the “exquisite corpse” drawing exercise, a collaborative drawing approach first used by surrealist artists to create intuitive drawings. Drexel dancers are creating the “Dance Chain Project,” in which the class picks a song and then the instructor breaks it up into four-measure increments. Each dancer is required to create movement for their section of the song, then create a transition movement. The next dancer only sees the transition movement and then develops the next movement. Kalila will then edit all of the video together, creating one class choreography from the series of individual movements.

David Lee White, who teaches Theatre Improvisation, is taking advantage of the fact that many excellent guest speakers are also home and available to join class via Zoom. Early this term, David invited his improvisation mentor, the Artistic Director of Topeka Civic Theatre and founder of the improv troupe Laugh Lines, Shannon Reilly, to Zoom in. During class, Shannon talked about his own experiences with improvisation, and the class discussed the basic improvisation rules as well as the five universal comic premises from which all comedy stems.

Drexel Pilates studio group class

The Drexel Pilates Studio’s online classes continue with gusto while the University is operating virtually, through both virtual group classes for $10 and virtual individual sessions for $55. Somatics expert and associate teaching professor Jennifer Morley partners with the studio’s leadership team to offer opportunities to center yourself in this time of uncertainty.

Drexel Pilates Schedule

Mondays 5pm Breath and Balance
Tuesdays 12:30pm Pilates V (V for Virtual!)
Wednesdays 10am Pilates V
Thursdays 12:30pm Breath and Balance
Fridays 10am Pilates V

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