Attendance & Participation (20%):

We have very little class time together – only an hour and fifteen minutes a week! Thus, you must attend every Friday class session. I expect you to arrive on time and to come prepared, having done the week’s reading (and/or screening, listening, blogging). Although I will usually give a brief lecture on the week’s material, most of our meetings will be discussion- and presentation-based. Occasionally, there will be a quiz or a short, in-class writing exercise.

Create and Maintain a Blog (25%):

You must create a wordpress blog in the first week, and send me the URL (example: mine is “”). You don’t need to do anything fancy with the blog, although you are welcome to take the exercise as far as you wish. I merely want you to establish an online site where you can archive your work for the class.

There are six units on the syllabus. For each of these units, I will prepare an exercise for you to do or a question for you to contemplate  on your blog. You must complete all of these mini-reflections on time – meaning by the start of the next unit – to receive full credit for this component of the course.

Museum or Theater Review (15%):

Before May, you must attend a theatrical performance or a museum exhibit and do a short (3-4 page) write-up. Here is the prompt:

Field Trip prompt

Note that our class has been invited to attend the dress rehearsal for an opera on Thursday, February 14th. This promises to be an exciting and informative afternoon – a unique opportunity, not only to see an opera for free, but also, potentially, to get a glimpse of what happens behind the scenes during a complex theatrical performance. Here is the company’s website:

If you’re unable to attend this event,  look for a bulletin board on this site, featuring museum exhibits and shows that you might attend for the purposes of this exercise. I hope to have one up by the second week of class.

Midterm (10%):

There will be take-home midterm during the week before Spring Recess. It will  cover material from the text book (Theories of Performance) and lecture.



Presentation (15%):

With 2-3 other students (i.e., in groups of 3-4), you will prepare a short (15-20 minute) presentation on a humanities-related topic. Your presentation may take many forms: you might perform a scene from a play; stage a debate; or teach a skill. If you have the technique and equipment, you might even make a short video or perform an original song. Or you can do something more conventionally “academic” – introduce a painter, poet, or musician, or analyze a sequence from a film.

I’ll distribute a sign-up sheet for presentations in class on February 1st. Two weeks before your presentation is scheduled, you’ll submit an outline for my approval. The outline should detail your plans for the presentation and clearly explain each group member’s role in the project.

Final Project (15%):

You’ll receive a prompt for this assignment after Spring Recess.