Tough economic times refuse to deter the Fine and Performing Arts faculty at Owens Community College from their mission of promoting the arts in Northwest Ohio. Enrollment across the department has increased almost 70 percent and this creates opportunities outside of the classroom to display the exceptional student talent.
Owens promoted a creative opportunity to the entire community by offering area high school students a chance to participate in Owens activities. Jeremy Meier, Theatre Program Facilitator, developed “Theatre Express” for Owens faculty members, students and community members.
The event required the actors to arrive on campus with a costume and prop of their choosing the evening before the performance. A snapshot was taken of each student wearing their costume and using their prop. The “playwrights” consisted of faculty members from the Fine Arts and Humanities Departments and they created an original play for the actors based only on the photo. Both the rehearsals and performance took place the following evening, thus spanning a time frame of only 24 hours. The response from this event was tremendous and is set to occur again on October 24.
“Theater Express is great for people who do not have the time or availability that a full length stage production requires. The event has a ‘beat the clock' feel for the actors and audience because it is amazing to see what great productions can be made in such a short amount of time,” said Meir.
Last Spring, Owens participated in Artomatic419, which showcased visual and performance art from local artists throughout the region. Owens Community College was one of the most represented organizations at the event with entries from 43 students and 13 faculty members.
Artomatic419 was coordinated by Margaret Lockwood-Lass, adjunct faculty in photography, and Michelle Carlson, adjunct faculty in Fine Art.
“We strive to provide unique educational opportunities for our students,” says Dr. Douglas Mead, Chair of Fine and Performing Arts. “We encourage success beyond the classroom for students. We want them to think of themselves as working professionals though the duration of their time at Owens. This mindset will give them a significant advantage as they represent a new generation of artists, musicians and actors.”
Owens continues to set a standard of excellence for higher education in Northwest Ohio. The Fine and Performing Arts Department is only one example of the superior work that is exhibited on a regular basis across the college. For more information about the Fine and Performing Arts or any other program at Owens, please visit www.owens.edu.