NSU offers trip to Oregon Shakespeare Festival

(Tahlequah, Okla.)--What does Shakespeare, Oregon and Northeastern State University have in common? For the fifth consecutive year that answer is NSU students.

As part of the fall 2012 intersession, NSU students can study live-performance plays for class credit at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Ore.

Dr. John Mercer, professor of English, serves as group leader and course instructor. He said students enjoy the high quality and innovation of the plays, the lively discussions before and after performances, the interaction with members of the acting company and the dazzling beauty of the Cascade Mountains.

“This is by far the most exciting experience I’ve had as an NSU professor,” Mercer said. “This is so unlike the usual classroom experience, and seeing the plays performed is better than reading them on a page. The students are always eager to take the trip and so it is always a highlight for me.”

This year the group will attend four plays by Shakespeare – “Romeo and Juliet,” “As You Like It,” “Henry V” and the rarely performed “Troilus and Cressida.” Attendees will also see “The Very Merry Wives of Windsor, Iowa,” “Medea/Macbeth/Cinderella” and “Animal Crackers.”

“By seeing the plays live, the students learn that there are many variables in theater,” Mercer said. “There are many decisions made by the actors and directors that shape the experience for the audience, be it setting, costumes or sound effects.”

Sponsored by the NSU College of Liberal Arts and the Department of Languages and Literature, the trip is July 31-August 7, the week after NSU’s regular summer term ends.

Coweta senior Angela Given is assisting with publicizing the trip for her capstone project.

“I went on the trip in 2010 and one of the festival’s theaters is based on an Elizabethan-era design,” she said. “Seeing the plays live, I imagined my experience was similar to those who attended the plays in Shakespeare’s times.”

She said she is enjoying her role in promoting the trip and that the experience is an educational enhancement of her English major.

“I love that my capstone has something to do with Shakespeare that isn’t all about writing a paper,” she said. “I am enjoying the process of helping publicize a trip that I have attended in the past.”

The cost of the trip is $1,220 which includes round-trip airfare, ground transportation, dormitory housing, breakfasts, theatre tickets and educational sessions with the acting company. The group will also take a day trip to Crater Lake National Park.

A discount of $25 is available to the first seven students who sign for the trip and make the deposit. Partial scholarships are available for undergraduate and graduate students. The scholarship deadline is March 15 and deposits are expected by March 29.

Students may earn three hours of undergraduate credit in English, humanities, or theatre or three hours of graduate credit in English. The cost of the trip does not include tuition and fees.

For more information about the trip, course and scholarships, contact Mercer at 918-449-6541. 

Published: 2/8/2012 2:44:54 PM

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