Jacob Pinholster

March 1, 2015

Jacob Pinholster, director of the School of Film, Dance and Theatre and associate professor in performance design, has been unanimously elected to the governing board of the University/Resident Theatre Association (URTA). URTA is the nation's largest association of professional, graduate (MFA) theatre training programs and related professional theatre companies, consisting of 39 influential universities and 15 partnered theatre companies. URTA helps to secure the future of the American Theatre by maintaining a gold standard in professional training of the next generation of theatre artists, and providing resources to diverse theatre artists entering the performing arts industry.

The URTA board of directors consists of six directors and four officers elected from member schools, with elections conducted in the fall. The board of directors has responsibility for the governance of the association and, as a collection of experts in the areas of theatre and theatre training, has considerable influence in guiding URTA's ongoing services and new programs. Download Full Image

Taking risks in “This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing”

February 4, 2015

Growing up is tough, even in the world of fairytale and fantasy.

In the latest ASU MainStage production, Finegan Kruckemeyer’s “This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing,” three sisters must find their own individual paths through a fantastical world as they discover more about what truly matters to each of them in life. "This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing" Photo courtesy of Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts Download Full Image

“The beauty of this fairytale is that the young women in this play are actually creating their own world,” says the play’s director, Erika Hughes, who is an assistant professor of theatre in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre. “So they make their own magic in a way that is very relatable and also teaches us that we all make our own magic.”

When we meet sisters Albienne, Beatrix and Carmen, at the play’s inception, they are only 12 years old. The story spans 20 years of adventure and change as each girl grows into her own woman.

“So much of popular entertainment offers only ‘the princess’ as a model to which girls may aspire,” says Lance Gharavi, associate director of the School of Film, Dance and Theatre and artistic director for the MainStage season. “’This Girl’ has no princesses, just three orphaned heroines. Each of them struggles to find her own way of making it through a dangerous world, each makes something very different of herself. While Kruckemeyer’s script is irresistibly fun and playful, it also offers a grittier, more complicated and ultimately more empowering vision for girls than the one the multi-plex has made familiar.”

Behind the Scenes: This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing from ASU Sch of Film, Dance & Theatre on Vimeo.

Emily Nash, an undergraduate in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre, plays Carmen, the girl who does nothing. She thinks the play is particularly relatable for college-aged students like herself. “A lot of ASU students are in a similar position to these girls,” says Nash. “They’re on their own for the first time and they’re trying to figure out who they are. While they’re here, they’re going to have to try to figure out what’s important to them.”

Appropriately, playing this role has allowed Nash to practice doing just that. “During the process of this show, a very comfortable zone has been created for me to experiment, to try new things,” she says. “I feel like it’s helped me take more risks as an actress.”

“This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing” is a Theatre for Youth production, which means it is suitable for young audiences, but the themes in this story will appeal to theatregoers of all ages.

“I think it’s a play that will really make people think about their own life journeys, the risks that they’ve taken, and how to support people as they grow,” says Hughes.

Catch one of seven performances of “This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing” at the Lyceum Theatre, 901 S. Forest Mall, on ASU’s Tempe Campus:
Feb. 13 at 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 15 at 2 p.m.
Feb.19 at 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 21 at 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 22 at 2 p.m.

Tickets prices are:
$16–General; $12–ASU Faculty, Staff + Alumni; $12–Senior; $8–Student
Purchase tickets online or call 480.965.6447.

Media Contact:
Katrina Montgomery
Editor Assistant

Spring 2015 Emerging Artists: Empowerment, communication and transformation

January 20, 2015

The ASU School of Film, Dance and Theatre’s Emerging Artists II and Emerging Artists Resite will offer audiences a number of conceptually lush performances this spring: personal experiences of the link between empowerment and movement; sensations based on our shared memories, habits and perspectives; and a journey of physical and mental rigor and intimacy.

It’s a lot to pack into a single performance, but these up-and-coming choreographers are up to the challenge. Fumihiro Kikuchi's "Purple World" Photo by Tim Trumble Download Full Image

Emerging Artists is a biannual series featuring choreography from the graduating MFA students in dance. These thesis projects are the accumulation of several years of study, exploring a variety of issues through movement, interactive media and performance.

This particular iteration of Emerging Artists II will showcase the work of Chareka Daniel and Fumihiro Kikuchi, while Emerging Artists Resite will feature In Kyung Lee’s site-specific piece.

Daniel and Kikuchi will each be presenting a 40-minute-long dance in the Margaret Gisolo Dance Studio for Emerging Artists II.

Daniel’s work, “Linked Together,” is layered: The performance includes nine ASU dancers as well as nine children from the Boys and Girls Club.

“’Linked Together’ is a choreographic project inspired by working with at-risk youth and their ability to learn, grow and express themselves through dance,” says Daniel. “The lessons learned through dance flow seamlessly into the non-dance world, encouraging people to live authentically, make empowered decisions, take ownership over their work, think creatively and collaborate with others regardless of socioeconomic status, ethnicity, religion or anything else.”

Kikuchi’s piece, “Purple World,” which features three dancers, including Kikuchi himself, is a bit more abstract.

Kikuchi say he “sees the moments between the past and present, and interprets the moments with collaborators in present to move on to the next inquiry.” He calls “Purple World” an “interactive communication through body language and sensations.”

For Emerging Artists Resite, which is a separate performance, Lee decided to present her piece at the ASU Art Museum, so that she could work with a non-traditional space.

“I was looking for a non-theatrical space in order to create more intimacy between the performers and the viewers,” she says. “The museum space was perfect, because the way the sound travels in the room really creates that intimacy. Also, the audience and the performers are positioned very close without any divide, so we all directly share that space and energy.”

Her piece, “waiting for a passenger/ ship to go to sea,” is an exercise in movement poetics. As description, she offers: “Gradually, we hear the sea, although we are in the middle of the desert. Our shining sweat of quiet intensity breaks us apart – we become your babies.”

See “Linked Together” and “Purple World” in Emerging Artists II at the Margaret Gisolo Dance Studio PEBE 132, on ASU’s Tempe Campus:

Jan. 30 at 6:30 p.m.
Jan. 31 at 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 1 at 2 p.m.

See “waiting for a passenger/ ship to go to sea” in Emerging Artists Resite at the ASU Art Museum, on ASU’s Tempe Campus:

Jan. 20 at 6:30 p.m.
Jan. 24 at 2 p.m.
Jan. 27 at 6:30 p.m.

Emerging Artists II ticket prices are:
$16–General; $12–ASU Faculty, Staff + Alumni; $12–Senior; $8–Student
Purchase tickets online or call 480.965.6447.

Emerging Artists Resite is free to the public.

Media Contact:
Katrina Montgomery
Editor Assistant

Four new plays featured in fall 2014 TheatreLAB series

October 29, 2014

Theater lovers can be part of the creative process in the ASU TheatreLAB program, a “second stage” designed to help the School of Film, Dance and Theatre student playwrights develop their projects, during the program's fall 2014 series, which runs Oct. 30 through Nov. 1 in FAC 133.

TheatreLAB gives the audience an opportunity to experience works in various stages of development from readings of new scripts to full workshop productions that feature prototype sets and costumes. Each night of the series features discussions with the playwrights and creators and opportunities for the audience to share their responses to the works in progress. Photo courtesy of Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts Download Full Image

The idea of a theatrical production as a creative process that needs to be honed and refined over time – with feedback from an audience – is at the heart of the TheatreLAB.

“It’s called a ‘lab’ for very good reason,” said Jacob Pinholster, director of the ASU School of Film, Dance and Theatre. “It moves the creation of new works away from the conservatory model and much closer to the model of research, development and discovery that you find in the sciences and technology. TheatreLAB is a great way for audiences to meaningfully participate in the creation of the theater of the future.”

The fall 2014 TheatreLAB series features:

“There’s No Place Like It” written by Rivka Rocchio, Oct. 30 at 7:30 p.m.

After her lover leaves her, Tina struggles with isolation and disconnection in a technologically connected culture.

“What it's Worth/Market-Based Memories” written by Jeff McMahon with original music by Aaron Neber, Oct. 31 at 7:30 p.m.

An ensemble piece blending interviews, statistics, short scenes, songs and music, this new musical examines the multiple meanings of worth, value and debt.

“Nadine’s Coloring Book” written by Ashley Laverty and directed by Kirt Shineman, Nov. 1 at 7:30 p.m.

After 11-year-old Nadine witnesses her father's fatal car accident, she finds solace in the imaginary world of her coloring book, where her father is still alive and she is happy once again.

“jellyfish pine” written by Michael Yichao, Nov. 2 at 7:30 p.m.

Emily loves Jack and Jack loves Emily — just never at the same time. A journey of crossed paths, near misses and lives lived out of order.

All performances will be held in FAC 133 in the Nelson Fine Arts Center, 51 East 10th St. on ASU’s Tempe campus.

Ticket prices are:
$10–General, ASU Faculty, Staff + Alumni; $5–Seniors, Students 

Media Contact:
Katrina Montgomery
Editor Assistant

Herberger Institute brings new artists, scholars on board for 2014-2015 school year

August 26, 2014

All five schools in ASU's Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts have hired new faculty members for the 2014-2015 academic year.

"We are thrilled to welcome such a distinguished group of young faculty to the Herberger Institute," said Steven J. Tepper, dean of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. "These artists and scholars have already made a mark in the world – building award-winning structures; designing life-saving devices; singing at the world's best opera halls; and publishing an impressive body of scholarly work. Download Full Image

"They are advancing new forms of art and design, collaborating across disciplines, and are committed to improving the quality of life in their communities," Tepper added. "We are fortunate that they have brought their talents and creativity to our students and colleagues at ASU, and to our region."

New faculty members are listed by school, below. For more information about any of the faculty members, or to schedule an interview with any of them, please contact Deborah Sussman Susser at deborah.susser@asu.edu.

The Design School

"We are delighted to welcome five new colleagues to The Design School this year," said Craig Barton, director of the school. "The faculty search committees were impressed by their research interests, teaching experience and enthusiasm for transdisciplinary practices. Collectively, they will enhance the visibility and stature of our faculty, which is well recognized for its longstanding commitment to design education and research. We are fortunate that they elected to join us, and look forward to the contributions which they will make to design communities within and beyond the university."

Paul CoseoPaul Coseo, assistant professor of landscape architecture

Paul Coseo comes to ASU from the University of Michigan, where he was a researcher and lecturer in the Urban and Regional Planning Program. He obtained his landscape architect license in the state of Illinois and worked for several years as a landscape architect in Chicago. Coseo examines how landscape and urban designs impact natural processes, ecosystems and residents' lives. He approaches scholarship, teaching and practice with a humble appreciation for how designs impact natural and social environments. Recently, he investigated how physical characteristics of eight Chicago neighborhoods contributed to urban heat islands and residents' heat vulnerability. Coseo received a doctorate in urban and regional planning from the University of Michigan, a master of landscape architecture from the University of Michigan and a bachelor of science in meteorology from Central Michigan University.

Magnus FeilMagnus Feil, assistant professor of industrial design

Magnus Feil comes to ASU from the University of Washington in Seattle, where he has been working as an assistant professor at the Division of Design since 2008. He received his master's in industrial design from The Ohio State University and a Diplom (FH) from the Hochschule für Gestaltung, Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany. He came to the United States as a Fulbright Scholar in 2000. His research interests are product design in aviation and medicine, as well as product interaction, which consists of control of views, vehicles and robotic platforms, and aspects that guide form in industrial and interaction design. Feil has received the Red Dot Award for excellence in Design by the Designzentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany, in 2002 and the iF product design award of the International Forum Design Hannover, Germany, in 2003. Feil worked as product designer for B/S/H GmbH in Munich, as a design consultant for Siemens Corporate Research Inc. in Princeton, New Jersey, and as a human-machine interface design consultant for Johnson Controls Inc., in Burscheid, Germany.

Diego García-Setién TerolDiego García-Setién Terol, assistant professor of architecture

Diego García-Setién Terol comes to ASU from the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid (UPM), where he was an associate professor at the School of Architecture. Prior to this appointment, he taught and lectured in several local and foreign universities. He is currently a doctoral candidate in the Theory and Practice of Architectural Design Program at UPM; his research is focused on "Architecture as Technical Object."

Terol is the founding partner of Ecosistema Urbano Architects (2004-2007), an award-winning practice whose projects include the EcoBoulevard, noted for its natural-artificial interplay, reversible strategy and environmental performance. In 2007 he founded the GaSSz Architects, a contemporary research-focused practice, whose work was soon acknowledged with an Opera Prima Award (COAM, 2007), and is marked by its innovative and sustainable approach toward architecture, understood as the integration of different and complex realms, in an eco-techno-system, which mediates between people and their environment.

Christian StaynerChristian Stayner, assistant professor of architecture

Christian Stayner comes to ASU from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where he was an assistant professor in the Department of Architecture and Urban Design, and before that, the 2012-2013 William Muschenheim Fellow in Architecture.

Stayner is also founding partner of Stayner Architects, a Los Angeles-based design practice that provides comprehensive architectural services across a broad range of scales and programs. His current academic research focuses on the non-visual in architecture: the possibilities of formalism and informality in excavation, spoils and land use; East African urbanism and territorial organizations; the possibilities of alimentation and olfaction in architecture; and practice in the public domain.

He received his master of architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, with distinction in studio, and his bachelor's in architecture and human rights theory from Harvard College, following two years at the experimental liberal arts institution Deep Springs College.

Chingwen Cheng Chingwen Cheng, assistant professor of landscape architecture/urbanism

Chingwen Cheng comes to ASU from the University of Michigan, where she was a post-doctoral research fellow. She received her doctorate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and her master of landscape architecture at the University of Michigan. Her research interests lie in the understanding of interaction between social and ecological systems, and the role that planning and design interventions can play in improving the resilience and sustainability of our built environments.

Cheng is a Registered Landscape Architect and LEED Accredited Professional. She has practiced and engaged communities in Chicago, Tampa Bay and the Boston region in diverse scales and capacities in community visioning, watershed planning, conservation development and sustainable design. Her recent work has included health impacts and environmental justice issues in the built environments. She is a dedicated educator and researcher, and an advocate of bringing transdisciplinary collaboration and social-ecological systems thinking into landscape architecture and planning professions to enhance resilience and sustainability in our communities.

The School of Art

"We are exceptionally lucky to have attracted Dr. Afanador-Pujol to our art history faculty," said Adriene Jenik, director of the School of Art. "Her scholarship will contribute to a deeper understanding of the colonial moment, and we anticipate lively crossover teaching and programmatic contributions with the School of Transborder Studies and the School of Social Transformation."

About Meredith Hoy, Jenik said, "As culture is shaped in collaboration with technology, it is increasingly important that we understand the throughlines of history. Dr. Hoy considers the ‘digital' in both the historical and the contemporary art gesture, and will join with faculty across the Herberger Institute as we debate these issues so critical in our time."

Angelica Anfador-PujolAngelica Anfador-Pujol, assistant professor of art history

Angelica Anfador-Pujol arrives at ASU having served most recently as assistant professor of art history at the University of Minnesota. Her expertise is in post-colonial Latin America and images of "justice," and she will be teaching a broad range of courses focusing on art in the Americas. She received her doctorate in 2009 from UCLA, has published her research in Art Bulletin and has a forthcoming text from UT Press.

Meredith HoyMeredith Hoy, assistant professor of art theory

Meredith Hoy arrives at ASU from the art department at UMass Boston, where she was an assistant professor. She received her doctorate from UCBerkeley in 2010 and has published articles in Leonardo Electronic Almanac, a chapter in a book from Oxford University Press and multiple catalog essays on digital aesthetics. Her text, "From Point to Pixel: A Genealogy of Digital Aesthetics," is currently under review with the University of Chicago Press. Hoy will be teaching an art theory graduate seminar along with art and design criticism courses.

The School of Music

"It is a testament to the innovative and progressive thinking that permeates Arizona State University and the School of Music that we have been able to attract artist-scholars of such high acclaim to the ASU School of Music Faculty," said Heather Landes, director of the ASU School of Music. "Hawkins, Mantie and Suzuki bring a wealth of experience and expertise to our programs in voice, music education and music composition, and join an internationally renowned faculty committed to the development and nurturing of 21st century musicians."

Kotoka Suzuki, assistant professor of music composition

As a composer, Kotoka Suzuki focuses on both multimedia and instrumental practices. She has produced several large-scale multimedia works, including spatial interactive audio-visual work for both concert and installation settings, often in collaboration with artists and scholars from other disciplines. Her work conceives of sounds as physical moving objects that are visible, constantly transforming into different forms, sizes and colors, as they travel through the air at different speeds. These objects can be based on real life, such as water, or an entirely imaginary object.

Suzuki's work is often produced in relationship to a specific site. The placement of sounds and performers within the site is also a crucial element in her work. The roles of the performer and audience are often expanded so that they become active compositional partners, where they are invited to directly influence the music and visual elements as well as the narrative/musical structure of the work. Her work has been featured internationally by performers such as the Arditti String Quartet, Continuum, Nouvel Ensemble Moderne, Pacifica String Quartet and Earplay Ensemble, and at numerous festivals, such as Ultraschall, ISCM World Music Days, Inventionen, Klangwerktage, VideoEx, International Computer Music Conference and Music at the Anthology.

The awards she has received include the DAAD Artist in Resident Berlin (Germany); Bourges International Electroacoustic Music Competition Prize-Multimedia (France); Robert Fleming Prize from Canada Council for the Arts; and the George A and Eliza Gardner Howard Foundation and Musica Nova International Electroacoustic Music Competition Honor Prize (Czech Republic). Suzuki received her bachelor of music from Indiana and her doctorate of musical arts‬ from Stanford. She comes to ASU from the Chicago area, where she previously taught at the University of Chicago.

Gordon HawkinsGordon Hawkins, voice

Gordon Hawkins is critically acclaimed throughout the world for his in-depth interpretations and luxuriant baritone voice. Most recent engagements include Alberich in "Der Ring des Nibelungen" at the San Francisco Opera, Deutsche Oper Berlin and Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville; Kaspar in "Der Freischütz" at Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville; Telramund in "Lohengrin" at Deutsche Oper Berlin; Renato in "Un Ballo in Maschera" at the New Orleans Opera; Crown in "Porgy and Bess" at Cincinnati Opera; Scarpia in "Tosca" with Arizona Opera; and Amonasro in "Aida" at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Cincinnati Opera and Michigan Opera Theatre.

Roger Mantie Roger Mantie, assistant professor of music education

Roger Mantie comes to ASU from Boston University, where he taught in the music education department, including courses in jazz. He received his doctorate from the University of Toronto.


The School of Film, Dance and Theatre

"This particular cohort of new faculty members is as dynamic, diverse and determined as any I have ever seen," said Jake Pinholster, director of the School of Film, Dance and Theatre. "They will help us build great new things on top of our excellent existing infrastructure."

Nia Witherspoon, assistant professor of theater and performance studies

Nia Witherspoon is a multidisciplinary artist-scholar producing work at the intersections of indigeneity, queerness and African diaspora epistemologies. Working primarily in the mediums of vocal and sound composition, playwriting and creative scholarship, Witherspoon holds a doctorate from Stanford University in theater and performance studies, and has been recognized by the Mellon Foundation, Theatre Bay Area and the National Queer Arts Festival. Her original play, "The Messiah Complex," a multi-temporal meditation on the loss of parents in black and queer diasporas, was featured in the Company of Angels' acclaimed "Black Women: State of the Union" (Los Angeles), developed at an AIR Space Residency (San Francisco) and awarded staged readings at the Painted Bride Art Center (Philadelphia) and the National Black Theatre (New York). "Messiah" premiered in April 2014 at New York's prestigious Downtown Urban Theatre Festival, where it received the Audience Award and placed second for Best Play.

Witherspoon's work as a vocalist, both independently and with acclaimed ceremonial-music duo SoliRose, has spanned stages, ceremonial spaces and activist organizations from the San Francisco Bay Area to Chicago, Los Angeles, Toronto and Beirut, and her creative non-fiction is most recently featured in Yellow Medicine Review: A Journal of Indigenous Literature, Art, and Thought. Witherspoon has forthcoming scholarship in the Journal of Popular Culture and Women and Performance, and she is currently at work on a book project, "The Nation in the Dark: Reparations of Ceremony in Diaspora," which asserts that nationalism, far from being dead, is essential to radical women of color re-envisioning indigenous religions.

Jason Scott, assistant professor of theater and film history

Jason Davids Scott earned his doctorate in theater in 2009 at the University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB), where he also earned a master of arts with honors in 2004. As a director at UCSB, he created and advised many student-based improvisational groups, as well as acting and directing in several local and Mainstage productions. He was also the administrative director of the Michael Howard Studios in New York. Currently, Scott is the Film Studies and Sexuality/Erotica Area Chair for the Mid-Atlantic Popular/American Culture Association, where he also serves as vice president of publications. Prior to graduate school, Scott graduated with a bachelor's in cinema studies from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, where he received the George Amberg Memorial Award for Undergraduate Achievement and the Founder's Day Award for academic excellence. He then established a decade-long career as a film publicist and development executive in both Los Angeles and New York, working for Castle Rock Entertainment and, later, actress/producer Helen Hunt.

As a lecturer at ASU from 2009-2011, Scott also served as the coordinator for curricular revision for the School of Theatre and Film. From 2011-2013, he was an assistant professor at the School of Theatre at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Scott continues to serve as a freelance publicity and marketing consultant for entertainment firms in both Los Angeles and New York. He has created marketing materials for over 250 film projects and individual clients, and served as the unit publicist on films such as "Dazed and Confused," "The Crow" and "Party Girl."

Mary McAvoy, assistant professor of theater for youth/theater education

Mary McAvoy's research focuses on performance with, by and for young people, and histories of theater and drama in educational contexts. She is also a certified K-12 theater arts educator. Her articles have appeared in Youth Theatre Journal, The Journal of American Drama and Theatre and Incite/Insight. Her coauthored book, "Drama Methods for Teaching and Learning," is forthcoming from Routledge Press. She is the 2012 American Alliance for Theatre and Education's Winifred Ward Scholar and the 2014 Distinguished Dissertation Award recipient. She has also received research awards from the American Society for Theatre Research, the American Theatre and Drama Society and the Mellon Foundation. She is a graduate of University of Wisconsin-Madison (master's and doctorate in theater and drama) and the University of North Carolina at Asheville (bachelor's in theater with K-12 licensure).

Jessica Rajko, assistant professor of dance

Jessica Rajko is a performer, choreographer and interdisciplinary digital media artist. As a practicing artist, her work with movement and digital media includes dance performance, dance for camera, electronic wearable design, audio/visual installation design and performance with movement-based media control. She has collaborated with artists such as Mary Fitzgerald, David Therrien and Todd Ingalls, and performed for artists such as Ann Ludwig, Ashleigh Leite, Nora Chipaumire and Charlotte Boye-Christensen. Rajko performed in Ashleigh Leite's "The Zoo" at The Joyce Theatre, in New York City. She also developed an interactive installation for David Therrien's "Beautiful Light" sculpture, presented at Scotiabank Nuit Blanche Art Festival, in Toronto, Canada.

Rajko is the co-founder of urbanSTEW, a non-profit organization whose mission is to inspire and expand the relevance of digital arts in the community. Through urbanSTEW, she has developed artist workshops, curated interactive art installations and created interactive, multidisciplinary artwork. urbanSTEW's most recent work, The Amyloid Project, is an interdisciplinary work created in collaboration with ASU physics professor Sara Vaiana. The Amyloid Project fuses interactive art, dance, music and physics research to create this multifaceted artwork. It was commissioned by Mesa Arts Center for their SPARK! Festival of Creativity. Mesa Arts Center also commissioned urbanSTEW's award-winning work, "Intonarumori," which has been exhibited internationally.

Ashley Gamba, clinical assistant professor of costume technology

Ashley Gamba has been working professionally in theater and film for over 10 years. Her design work has been seen at South Coast Repertory, Native Voices at the Autry and Theatreworks Colorado Springs. Gamba served as the resident assistant costume designer for the Pasadena Playhouse, and has worked extensively as an assistant designer and costume craftsperson at South Coast Repertory, the Geffen Playhouse, the LA Opera and on the 2011 national tour "Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan." Her film designs include shorts films "The Interview" and "Driftwood." Gamba also worked in the costume department on feature films "Car Dogs," "The Lincoln Lawyer" and "Knight and Day." She has been a celebrity wardrobe stylist for "The Pink Project" and "The Mona Lisa Project" charity photo books, designing and building costumes for Camryn Manheim, Jennifer Love Hewitt and Tina Majorino. Additionally, she has been creating custom bridal headwear since 2007. Gamba received her master's in costume design from UC Irvine and a bachelor's in theater production from Penn State.

Chris Winnemann, clinical assistant professor of technical direction

Chris Winnemann is receiving his master's in technical direction from the University of Missouri Kansas City, and is currently the technical director of Creede Repertory Theatre in Colorado. Previously, he served as staff technical director at Auburn University and faculty technical director at Iowa Valley Community College. He has a bachelor's in technical design and production from Viterbo University.

The School of Arts, Media + Engineering

"We are all quite delighted with this remarkable young scholar and community builder," said Sha Xin Wei, director of the School of Arts, Media + Engineering, "and excited to welcome her to ASU!"

Stacy KuznetsovStacy Kuznetsov, assistant professor of human-computer interaction

Stacy Kuznetsov received her doctorate from the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. Her areas of interest include human-computer interaction, natural sensors, citizen science, environmental health, bio-hacking, wearable and mobile technologies. She will have affiliate status in the ASU School of Computing, Informatics and Decision Systems (Engineering).

Deborah Sussman

Communications and media specialist, Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts


Grisha Coleman

August 2, 2014

Grisha Coleman, assistant professor of movement, computation and digital media in the School of Arts, Media + Engineering and affiliate faculty in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre, both in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, has been selected as the fourth annual Mohr Visiting Artist, hosted by the Stanford University Department of Theater and Performance Studies. Coleman will teach a course titled "Hybrid Action: Physical Intelligence in Digital Culture."

More information here. Download Full Image

Karen Schupp

June 1, 2014

The performance piece Western Door/Power Trail has been selected for the 2014 Currents: Santa Fe International New Media Festival. Western Door/Power Trail is a collaboration between maker/performer Karen Schupp, assistant professor in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre, and interactive media composer Todd Ingalls, faculty in Arts, Media + Engineering. The work traces issues of sustainability and water rights in relationship to ideas about power and relocation.

Through exploring and embodying these ideas, evocative sound and visual environments emerge anew in each improvised and interactive performance. Currents: Santa Fe International New Media Festival brings together the work of established, unrecognized and emerging new media artists, from New Mexico, the U.S. and the world, for events showcasing interactive and fine art video installations, multimedia performances and web-based art forms. Download Full Image

Currents: Santa Fe International New Media Festival

Melissa Rex-Flint

June 1, 2014

Melissa Rex, clinical professor of dance in the Arizona State Universuty School of Film, Dance and Theatre, has been invited as a guest speaker/presenter/facilitator at this year’'s Alopeciapalooza in Claryville, New York. The event brings together many children and their families dealing with alopecia for a week of healing and sharing. Alopecia is an auto-immune disease that affects the growth of hair in millions world-wide.

Rex will facilitate group discussions stemming from her own experiences as a child and teenager, which she wrote about in an essay that was published in "The Lion and the Unicorn" (Spring 2013 issue), as well as facilitate classes in creative movement and performance for the children and their families as part of her continued research in this area. "I am hoping to gather some information and feedback with the possibility of interviews with some of the children and families to expand on my essay and/or write a new article," Rex said. "Movement, performance and a creative path in my life are what saved me from my own depression and suicidal moments." Download Full Image

Micha Espinosa

June 1, 2014

Micha Espinosa, associate professor of voice and acting in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre, is the editor of a newly published book from Smith and Kraus titled "“Monologues for Latino/a Actors: A Resource Guide to the Contemporary Latino/a Playwrights.”"

Jorge A. Huerta hails the accomplishment: “"This volume is the first of its kind, a meticulously researched and documented collection of monologues from a rich diversity of Latina and Latino playwrights. Actors will finally have a resource that virtually defines the wealth of playwrights expressing their unique visions of the New American Theatre.”" The book is available here Download Full Image

Joseph Fortunato

April 2, 2014

Joe Fortunato, senior lecturer in the ASU School of Film, Dance and Theatre, has been honored for his most recent research project, “"Truth, Torture and the Political 'Chilling' of Zero Dark Thirty,”" which placed first in the Debut Category of the Production Aesthetics and Criticism Division's Paper Competition at the upcoming Broadcast Educators of America (BEA) convention, to be held this year in Las Vegas, Nev. More information on BEA and the national convention can be found at www.beaweb.org.

This prestigious honor follows his award-winning research paper “The Gaze and The Spielberg Face: Steven Spielberg’s Application of Lacan’s Mirror Stage and Audience Response,” which was also honored as a “Top Paper” in the Visual Communications Division of The Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (AEJMC) in Washington D.C. this past August.  Download Full Image