University of South Carolina

Serenbe Playhouse
In the scene shop in May, MFA theater students Brian Clowdus and Daniel Hill, and MFA theater alumna Kimi Maeda, examined stage designs.

What I Did This Summer: Open a professional theater


The inaugural season of Clowdus’ theatre is full: The Jungle Book, part of his mission to provide good children’s theatre to the area; John and Jen, a musical; and Shakespeare’s R&J, a new adaptation of Romeo and Juliet where four young men play all the roles.

“Another part of my mission is presenting new work, so I have invited all my fellow graduate students to perform their solo shows at Serenbe,” said Clowdus, who is originally from Hokes Bluff, Alabama.

Ready, Set, Glow!
Ready, Set, Glow!

The people involved in the growth and first season of Serenbe Playhouse include many Carolina students and alumni. They are Clowdus, executive/artistic director; April Brown, costume designer, costume design MFA student; Aaron Pelzek, lighting designer, recent MFA in lighting design graduate; Kimi Maeda, set designer, MFA scenic design graduate who is now a freelance set designer and recipient of the 2005 Rose Brand Award from the U.S. Institute of Theatre Technology; Alison Hogue, drama coordinator and assistant stage manager, MAT in theatre education graduate; Sandra Dietel, production stage manager, M.A. in teaching theatre; William Shuler, actor and musical director, BA in music and theatre; Amy Boyce Holtcamp, professional writer and director who lives in Columbia; Melissa Goodfellow, actress, senior theatre major; Samuel Traquina, actor, senior theatre major; and Holly Wood, business manager, recent graduate from USC's Moore School of Business.

With the firefly as its mascot, and "Ready, Set, Glow!" as its mantra, Serenbe Playhouse is poised for growth. Thanks to a fundraiser in March and the efforts of a board of directors, it's off to a good start. 

Clowdus hopes to have a bonafide theatre building in the future.

“Even then,” he said, “I’ll always want some kind of outdoor element in the performances.”

By Web Communications

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Posted: 05/19/10 @ 12:00 AM | Updated: 12/09/10 @ 3:35 PM | Permalink