NEW YORK CITY: Theater Development Fund has announced TDF’s Teacher Seminars and Professional Development Workshop will take place online July 13-17. This year’s workshop, titled “Directing Plays and Musicals in the School and Classroom,” will be led by teaching artist Stephen DiMenna.
“This workshop has previously been taught in person each summer, but with that being impossible this year due to the health crisis, we decided to move the course online,” said TDF executive director Victoria Bailey in a statement. “By pivoting to have the class taught via Zoom, we’re thrilled that it sold out its 26 spots quickly and these teachers will have developed new skills for directing when they return into their classrooms.”
The New York City educators, who teach K-12, will participate in two-hour workshops each day on Zoom led by DiMenna. The participants will watch the filmed productions of Dominique Morisseau’s Pipeline and Lincoln Center Theater’s revival The King and I as part of the course. The participating teachers will also choose and analyze a theatrical text and create rehearsal schedules, directorial concepts, and strategies for staging the work with their students. The course will cover ensemble-building warm-ups and blocking demonstrations.
DiMenna is an Off-Broadway and regional theatre director. He is the artistic director of the International Theatre Project, which uses theatre as a catalyst for education, self-discovery and empowerment for young people living in disenfranchised communities worldwide. He has been a senior teaching artist for TDF since 1996. He was the artistic airector of the MCC Theatre Youth Company for 11 years. He was on the faculty of New York University’s Program in Educational Theatre for 14 years. He was the director oftThe Hennepin County Home School Drama Project, where he conducted workshops with incarcerated juvenile felons in a detention facility in Minneapolis. He was the co-artistic director of the Stargate Theatre Company, a program of Manhattan Theatre Club that works with court involved youth in NYC. He has directed more than 60 productions Off-Broadway and around the country. He directs theatre workshops regularly for the Stratford Festival of Canada. He is a theatre facilitator for the NYC DOE and was a co-author of the Theatre Blueprint. He is the director of the high school theatre studio for Summer Arts Institute for the NYC Department of Education. He is a member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers.