We consistently bring in artists from the theatre profession to work with our students on productions and to give workshops and lectures regarding the industry. Below is a list of artists who have worked with us recently:
On campus in March 2015, Curt gave a short talk after a screening of the film Shakespeare Behind Bars and gave a workshop on Shakespearean acting.
Curt Tofteland – Founder and Producing Artistic Director of Shakespeare Behind Bars - Curt is the Founder of the internationally acclaimed Shakespeare Behind Bars (SBB) program, now in its 21st year of continuous operation. From 1995-2008, Curt facilitated the SBB program at the Luther Luckett Correctional Complex in LaGrange, Kentucky. During his thirteen year tenure, Curt produced and directed fourteen Shakespeare productions. Several participants in the SBB/KY program have garnered multiple Pen Literary Prison Writing Awards.
During the 2003 SBB production of The Tempest, Philomath Films chronicled the process in a documentary that premiered at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival and forty+ film festivals around the world winning a total of eleven film awards. You can see information about the film here: www.shakespearebehindbars.org/documentary/
Curt has delivered four TEDx Talks. In 2013, at TEDx Berkeley, on the subject of building circles-of-trust; in 2012, at TEDx Macatawa (Holland, MI) on the subject of revenge and mercy; and in 2010, at TEDx East (New York City), on the subject of shame; and TEDx Muskegon (Muskegon, MI) on the subject of living in the rub between light and darkness.
Curt is the recipient of three distinctive fellowships, two from the Fulbright Foundation and one from the Petra Foundation, for his work as a prison arts practitioner using Shakespeare in corrections. Curt is the Executive Producer of Prospero’s Prison, a film by Tom Magill, an award-winning Northern Ireland filmmaker and founder of Educational Shakespeare Company.
From 1989 to 2008, he was the Producing Artistic Director of Kentucky Shakespeare Festival. As a professional director and an Equity actor, he has 200+ professional productions to his credit. Curt is a founding member and past president of the Shakespeare Theatre Association, an international service organization for theaters which produce the works of William Shakespeare. He received the 2016 Sidney Berger Award.
Curt is the recipient of a number of prestigious honors and awards including a Doctor of Humanities from Oakland University, Doctor of Humane Letters from Bellarmine University, an Al Smith Fellowship in playwriting from the Kentucky Arts Council, the Sidney Berger Award from the Shakespeare Theatre Association, the Fleur-de-lis Award from the Louisville Forum, the Mildred A. Dougherty Award from the Greater Louisville English Council, and a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Minnesota.
Christopher Scott Murillo
Christopher designed the scenery and costumes for Concordia’s production of The 39 Steps in March of 2015.
Christopher Scott Murillo – Scenic and Costume Designer, Set Decorator – Christopher is a professional scenic designer, costume designer, set decorator, and educator. He is a recipient of the Chataqua Fellowship in Design, and is a multiple nominee for both Ovation and Garland awards.
His scenic designs include Spring Awakening at Deaf Theatre West; Hair, The Who’s Tommy, Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol, Lysistrata Jones, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Dogfight, Evita, and Merrily We Roll Along for the Chance Theater; Having Our Say: The Delaney Sisters’ First 100 Years, Oklahoma!, and Big River for New Village Arts Theater; Forever Plaid, Doubt, A Walk in the Woods, and Heir Apparent for International City Theatre among others. He has also served as assistant designer for productions of Spamalot and A Chorus Line at the Hollywood Bowl, Glengarry Glen Ross for La Jolla Playhouse, Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing at South Coast Repertory, Love’s Labours Lost, and The Three Sisters at the Chataqua Theatre Festival.
His costume designs include A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Theatricum Botanicum, Spring Awakening for Deaf Theatre West, and A Bright New Boise, UP!, and The Seagull at the Chance Theater.
As a set decorator he has created multiple faux interiors for multiple reunion shows of The Real Housewives of Orange County, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Vanderpump Rules, the set of Pawnography and the YouTube Pro Series and YouTube Fusion.
He has taught at Los Angeles City College, UC San Diego, Riverside City College, and California State – Los Angeles.
You can see Christopher Scott Murillo on the show Form Décor Design Challenge here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ERODJSsBLY and you can get a sense of the scope of his work on his website: http://www.christopherscottmurillo.com.
On Campus - October, 2013 – Deanna gave an acting workshop, held a Q & A, and gave a presentation “Living Out a Christian Vocation as a Playwright”
Deanna Jent – Playwright and Educator - Deanna Jent is a Professor of Theatre at Fontbonne University, where she has taught and directed shows since the fall of 1995. Deanna has been nominated five times for the Kevin Kline “Best Director” award and won the Kline Award (in St. Louis) for Best Production of 2007 for Standing on My Knees. In addition, three productions she directed (The Chosen, Going to See the Elephant and Women’s Minyan) have won the Kline award for “Best Ensemble”.
Deanna has directed at professional theatres throughout St. Louis, including the New Jewish Theatre, Shakespeare Festival St. Louis Touring Company, The Orange Girls, ACT Inc., Stray Dog Theatre, and St. Louis Shakespeare. She holds a Ph.D. in Theatre from Northwestern University.
She is a playwright and former editor of Christianity and Theatre magazine. Deanna founded Mustard Seed Theatre in St. Louis, Missouri in the fall of 2007. As a playwright she wrote Falling (produced Off-Broadway and at Concordia in November, 2013) which garnered three Drama Desk nominations and was published by Dramatists Play Service – read about Falling here - http://www.autismafter16.com/article/11-14-2012/falling-interview-playwright-deanna-jent
She has also made adaptations of Pride and Prejudice, Imaginary Jesus, and C.S. Lewis’ Till We Have Faces (produced at Concordia in November, 2012). She holds a Ph.D. in Theatre and Drama from Northwestern University, and serves on the board of directors of Christians in Theatre Arts, an arts networking organization.
Steve has designed lights for Concordia University on many productions including Songs for a New World, Still Life With Iris, and Ten Days in a Madhouse. In November 2014 he gave a talk about his work to our students.
Steve Giltner – Lighting Designer - Steve is the president an lead designer for Streetlite LLC., and has designed lighting for multiple live events, television and theatre productions. A short list of his work includes:
Live Events – The Grammy Music Preservation Benefit Concert, Hit Record Fall Formal, and concert lighting for Yoko Ono and the Plastic One Band.
Television – IGN Live Conference Special at E3, IGN Live Conference at Comic Con
Theatre – Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson at the Chance Theater, Chicago, Art, and Over the River and Through the Woods for Torrance Theatre Company, Sweet Charity, The King and I, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, The Full Monty, Sweeny Todd, and The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas for Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre.
You can learn more about Steve’s design work at: http://www.stevegdesign.co/
Carin has designed costumes for Looseleaf Theatre Company productions of Twelfth Night, As You Like It, The Comedy of Errors, The Merchant of Venice, Romeo and Juliet, Two Gentlemen of Verona, The Complete Works of Wm. Shakespeare (abridged) [revised] as well as the CUI production of The Brothers Menaechmus.
Carin Jacobs – Costume Designer - Carin Jacobs has been designing costumes around the OC/LA area for 15 years. Her work can be seen in many genres including theatre, film, live stage shows and professional cheerleading. Projects include; Arizona Cardinals Cheerleading uniforms (seen at the 2009 Superbowl), Operation Spy Girl stunt show for Six Flags Chicago, and the feature film Saving Lincoln. A highlight of her career was having the opportunity to work with Julie Taymor and the creative costume design team on “The Lion King in Los Angeles. In addition to her freelance design work, Carin also teaches costume history and design at The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, and California State University, Dominguez Hills.
She holds a B.A. in Art History from UCLA and an M.F.A. in Theatre from Cal State Long Beach.
Visit her website at www.CarinJacobsCostumeDesign.com
Announcing Theatre's 2017-18 Season
Irvine, Calif. (July 31, 2017)—The theatre department of Concordia University Irvine has announced its theatre offerings for the 2017-2018 academic year. Six productions, directed by Concordia theatre professors and starring University students, will be performed at the University Studio Theatre located on the campus at 1530 Concordia West, Irvine, starting Friday, September 8. This year’s productions include Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night set to Elvis Presley music; the harrowing account of life inside the Blackwell Island Asylum by New York reporter Nellie Bly in 1887, and a free Shakespeare play in the Nelson Amphitheater. General admission is $15; seniors and non-Concordia students are $12.
Still Life with Iris
September 8, 9, 15, 16 at 7:30 p.m. and September 10, 17 at 2 p.m.
In the magical land of Nocturno, Iris’ memory has been stolen from her by a selfish King and Queen. She escapes and starts a quest to find her identity and her home. Will she discover her past and make it home before it’s too late? Suitable for all ages.
The Servant of Two Masters
October 27, 28 and November 3, 4 at 7:30 p.m.
October 29 and November 5 at 2 p.m.
The servant Truffaldino must use every trick in the book to get two pairs of lovers guided to their wedding days over every obstacle available. First performed at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, this rousing adaptation of the comic classic finds all the fun and inventiveness of its farcical roots and gives it a fun, modern sensibility. Suitable for all ages.
All Shook Up
January 26, 27 and February 1, 2, 3 at 7:30 p.m.
January 28 at 2 p.m.
What happens when you take inspiration from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, set in a little Midwest town in 1955, and add Elvis Presley music? You get ALL SHOOK UP! A heartfelt story of the power of music and love, this high-energy musical filled with dance, comedy and killer vocals will have you tapping your blue suede shoes. Suitable for all ages.
Ten Days in a Madhouse
March 17, 22, 23, 24 at 7:30 p.m.
March 18, 25 at 2 p.m.
In 1887, young Nellie Bly was determined to be a New York reporter. She dared to have herself declared insane so that she could investigate first-hand the inner workings of the infamous Blackwell Island Asylum. Her harrowing account of life in the asylum and the mistreated women there created a new standard in investigative journalism but may have cost her more than we know.
Student-Directed One Acts
April 26, 27, 28 at 7:30 p.m.
April 29 at 2 p.m.
Two Concordia student directors—Ann Elyse DeMuch ’18 and Kylee Sullivan ’18—each direct a one-act play.
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged; revised)
May 26, 27, 28 and June 2, 3 at 4:30 p.m.
Nelson Amphitheatre, Concordia University Irvine
The entire Shakespeare canon in one show. This madcap comedy tries to smoosh all of Shakespeare’s comedies and tragedies into one tasty treat of high silliness. A must-see for Shakespeare lovers and those who just like a great laugh. Presented by Looseleaf Theatre Co., Concordia Irvine’s professional theatre company, that gives students an opportunity to work onstage and backstage alongside professionals, and dedicated to bringing the classics—for free—to Orange County. Suitable for all ages. Guests are encouraged to bring an outdoor lunch and refreshments.
Concordia University Irvine offers a theatre major with emphases in acting and directing, and technical theatre and design. The Theatre Department is consistently invited to participate at the prestigious Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival where Concordia students and faculty have been lauded for their work.