Department of Drama 2016-17 Season

Rust Echoes

Mar 23 – Apr 06, 2017
Faculty members Zeke Leonard and Katherine McGerr present an installation and performance inspired by the N.Y. Central Railroad.

Zeke Leonard and Katherine McGerr’s “Rust Echoes” is a gallery installation and performance inspired by the sonic landscape of the New York Central Railroad. The installation will be on view March 20-April 6, with an opening reception on Thursday, March 23, from 6-8 p.m. Performances will be held on March 24, 25 and 26 at 7 p.m.

For 100 years, the New York Central Railroad moved goods and people throughout the Northeast and Midwest; its connectivity helped to forge the economic and social framework of Central New York. The installation consists of five interactive sculptures made of the materials and forms that were common to the railroad. Steel and wood are given a voice, and railroad tools and hardware are used as musical instruments.

This installation is part of an ongoing project, “Salt City Found-Object Instrument Works,” an exploration by Leonard into resource usage and community building created through the making, distribution and playing of musical instruments.

The performance, devised by McGerr and featuring five students from SU:VPA’s Department of Drama, presents poems and stories about the railroad in dialogue with the sonic sculptures in the installation.

Leonard is an assistant professor in VPA’s School of Design, a member of the environmental and interior design faculty, and coordinator of the school’s first-year experience. His research involves the role of social responsibility and environmental stewardship in contextually relevant design and fabrication practices. Leonard regularly partners with community groups and organizations to find ways to put local resources to better use. 

McGerr is an assistant professor in VPA’s Department of Drama. For nearly 10 years she has been on the artistic staff of Chautauqua Theater Company, where she currently serves as new play development manager as well as the director of their annual Young Playwrights Festival. She regularly incorporates new plays into her teaching practice. Other research interests include the incorporation of plays by female playwrights into scene study repertoire and Stanislavski's Action Analysis system.

Lisa M. Corrigan | Visiting Scholar

Mar 30 – 31, 2017
Corrigan will speak on “Necropolitics and Black Boyhood from Emmett Till to Tamir Rice" and “Political Mobilization in the Age of Trump.”
Lisa M. Corrigan

Feminist rhetorical scholar Lisa M. Corrigan, Ph.D., will deliver lectures on March 30 and 31 as part of the colloquium series in the College of Visual and Performing Arts’ Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies.

Thursday, March 30

On Thursday, March 30, at 7 p.m. in 001 Life Sciences, Corrigan will speak about her essay “Necropolitics and Black Boyhood from Emmett Till to Tamir Rice.” The essay examines the continuous terrorism mobilized against black boys in the United States from Emmett Till to Tamir Rice to understand how black boyhood is understood as a perpetual threat to white social power. Corrigan examines how Till functions as a rhetorical frame to create meaning for contemporary audiences grappling with extrajudicial and police killings of black boys. Using Achille Mbembe’s notion of “necropolitics,” she charts the rhetorical and political dimensions of black disposability in a time of hypermediation, particularly through video surveillance and through an examination of Levinas’ meditations on the face as a site of identity construction.

Friday, March 31

On Friday, March 31, at 2 p.m. in 123 Sims Hall, Corrigan will speak on “Political Mobilization in the Age of Trump.” She will discuss the Women’s March on Washington, the rise of Indivisible and the role of state and local politics in the Trump era. She will also discuss grassroots strategies, online mobilization and direct action to help participants understand the distribution of political power beyond the presidency to understand how they can effectively mobilize for social change.

About Lisa M. Corrigan

Lisa M. Corrigan received a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland and is an associate professor of communication, director of the gender studies program and affiliate faculty in both African & African American Studies and Latin American Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. She researches and teaches in the areas of social movement studies, the Black Power and civil rights movement, prison studies, feminist studies, political communication and the history of the Cold War.

Corrigan’s first book is titled “Prison Power: How Prison Politics Influenced the Movement for Black Liberation” (University Press of Mississippi, 2016). Her second book is tentatively titled “Black Feelings.”

Additionally, Corrigan works as a political and media consultant for campaigns, caucuses, progressive organizations and legislators on issues ranging from reproductive justice to prison reform. She lectures across the country.

Major Barbara

Mar 31 – Apr 09, 2017
The Department of Drama's 'Major Barbara' presents George Bernard Shaw at his provocative, powerful, and astonishingly funny best.

By George Bernard Shaw
Directed by Gerardine Clark

Major Barbara presents Shaw at his provocative, powerful, and astonishingly funny best. Andrew Undershaft is a highly successful arms manufacturer. His estranged daughter Barbara has devoted her life to saving souls with the Salvation Army. When Andrew’s wife and Barbara’s mother, the formidable Lady Britomart, reunites father and daughter, she initiates a battle of wills and wits that has each convinced the other can be converted. Right, wrong, good, evil, moral, or immoral—it all gets turned topsy-turvy when Shaw sets his characters in motion.