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Emma Stanton’s thesis play, No Candy, centers around multi-generational, multi-ethnic Bosnian women who run a gift shop near the Srebrenica memorial, and how they cope, both privately and publicly, with the traumas they experienced during the war. No Candy is about how trauma inhabits the body and shapes a community. more
Current student Samantha Cooper’s thesis play, Invincible Ones, follows a Lower East Side apartment of women who are reeling from the death of their best friend, as they face what the world looks like in the wake of their loss. In this new world, each woman attempts to answer many seemingly unanswerable questions: Who will give the eulogy? Will they ever be able to live alone? Why did that girl’s brother show up? How far will you let someone go to keep your tips? more
Dominic Finocchiaro’s thesis play, Trees in their youth, follows four seniors navigate the perils of privilege, race, gender and sexuality as they struggle to come of age in their cloistered Bay Area town. Along the way, it asks the questions: Who were you in high school? What do you remember? What have you chosen to forget? Trees in their youth ran at the Ford Studio at Pershing Square Signature Center in May. more
Chas LiBretto’s thesis play, The Laodamiad, follows a young woman named Laodamia, daughter to a king on the verge of committing troops and resources to the war plans of political allies. She falls in love with a young officer and quickly marries him before he heads off to battle. He’s the first casualty of that war and she becomes the first war widow. more
Kate Mulley’s thesis play, Strange Bare Facts, constitutes a trilogy of plays—Grey Lady, Hither Ditch and The Next War—that explores the intersection of war and medicine across three different wars and 150 years. Set during the Civil War, the First World War and the war in Afghanistan, these plays delve into the tragedy, comedy, mystery, and romance of life and death at the front lines, in field hospitals and at home. more
Hongyi Tian’s thesis play, Planet Heart, revolves around two main characters: an American who goes to teach English at a high school in Xi’an, China, and a Chinese who works in New York City. It’s a piece about family and being a foreigner, and perhaps most importantly, it’s about how we make sense of the existence of ourselves and those around us as we journey through life. more
Ben Hoover's thesis play, Pioneer Species, follows Nick as returns to Pennsylvania after a long stint in the Amazon. After suffering from sunburn and mosquitos, he thinks he’s ready for all this old trappings of home—but then he finds himself curiously unmoved by Thanksgiving traditions, and he sets off on creating for himself a new kind of family that he can call his own. more
Kristin Slaney's thesis play, Un-Utero, follows Mel and Becca, best friends who live in a town where all Planned Parenthood locations have recently shut down. When Mel becomes pregnant, Becca decides to donate her eggs under the table to help Mel pay for an abortion. Un-Utero is a comedy about fertility, feminism, female friendship and Susan Miller horoscopes. The play was performed at the Ford Studio at Pershing Square Signature Center in April. more
Emma Cline’s ’13 much-anticipated debut novel, The Girls, has been published to great acclaim. more
Theatre Management & Producing alumnus Andy Donald ’10 was appointed the new associate artistic director at American Conservatory Theater (ACT), where he will commission and develop new work and assume producing and presenting responsibilities within the artistic department. more
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Columbia University School of the Arts offers MFA degrees in Film, Theatre, Visual Arts, and Writing, an MA degree in Film Studies, a joint JD/MFA degree in Theatre Management & Producing, a PhD degree in Theatre History, Literature, and Theory, and an interdisciplinary program in Sound Arts.