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  1. Performing Well

    SMTD’s new Wellness Initiative is addressing the unique physical and psychological challenges faced by performing arts students. With the exception of intercollegiate athletics, there is no program at the University of Michigan that is more physically taxing than the study of the performing arts. Instrumentalists, singers, dancers, and actors constantly use their bodies in service to…

  2. Dancing For Change

    A student-choreographed dance about racism at U-M opens eyes and sparks conversation. It is protocol at SMTD’s Collage Concerts for the audience to hold their applause until the end of the performance. This practice ensures that one act morphs seamlessly into the next while maintaining the concert’s trademark element of surprise: early music followed by big…

  3. Meet the (not remotely) Mean Girls

    When Erika Henningsen arrived at Michigan as a musical theatre freshman in 2010, she viewed her classmates Taylor Louderman and Ashley Park—both seasoned sophomores—as the ultimate in cool. Seeing them on stage, she thought: “I just want them to like me, I just want to be friends with them.” Her wish came true: over the…

  4. Empowering Women Filmmakers

    Over a weekend in January, SMTD alumnae gathered to hone their filmmaking skills. Last fall, two SMTD theatre alumnae met for coffee in Los Angeles, where both live, to discuss the ins and outs of filmmaking. The get together hadn’t been planned for the purpose of developing a workshop for women filmmakers, but that’s what…

  5. Moving Forward, Looking Back

    Professors Peter Sparling and Jerry Blackstone reflect on three decades at SMTD as they prepare for retirement. “I think that in the 30 years I’ve been here, Peter and I have maybe interacted no more than a few minutes,” said Professor Jerry Blackstone, director of choral activities and chair of conducting, as he settled himself…