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Theatre Is Essential!

Theatre Is Essential!

By William Conte

Theatre of the Poor Artistic Director Dr. William Conte discusses all aspects of theatre in a clear, engaging style designed for theatre students and all theatre practitioners. Topics include history, acting style, scenic design, performance conventions, theatrical and performance theory, dramatic literature, modern trends in performance, and the Entertainment Industrial Complex. Dr. Conte explores the meaning and purpose of Theatre throughout time and around the world, as well as its relevance to us today, and its possible extinction in the face emerging technologies.
Currently playing episode

Episode #2: Rethinking Academic Theatre

Theatre Is Essential!

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Episode #4: Community Theatre/Theatrical Community
Episode #4: Community Theatre/Theatrical Community
Actor William T. Wallace joins Conte for a discussion of how community theatre in Casper consists of a theatrical community of individuals who have dedicated themselves to the art; who have found ways to make a life in theatre, if not a living in it. Will shares his experience of "being raised" at Stage III, and reminisces about his parents' contributions to the theatrical community in Casper. Finally, Will and Conte speculate on the possibilities for a conservatory program in Casper run by the leading performing arts companies, and what it would be like if the theatrical community intentionally pooled its talent, energy, and resources.
56:57
January 28, 2023
Episode #3: Rethinking Academic Theatre, Part II
Episode #3: Rethinking Academic Theatre, Part II
Here we interrogate the value/importance of a college degree in the creative arts. We discuss the market interests of college performing arts programs, and how those interests may not be in the best interests of the students. We disclose the truth about The Narrative regarding higher education generally, and how it pertains to performing arts training. We explore the counterargument in terms of the apparent need for credentials, and how an important function of higher ed institutions is to police the quality of the individuals seeking to enter a profession, as well as the quality of the individuals wishing to  train others in that profession. Finally we make the case for a return to apprenticeships as a means for training and educating young theatre artists.
32:56
December 09, 2022
Episode #2: Rethinking Academic Theatre
Episode #2: Rethinking Academic Theatre
A look at the recent decline in college enrollment. Why are more and more people deciding to pursue their education by other means? Why has the value of an undergraduate degree declined, in terms of return on investment of time and resources? Why are so many students there to do the minimum to get "that piece of paper"? Why do they value the degree over the education it supposedly represents? And how does all this impact arts education?  Here are links to the statistics and information cited in Dr. Conte's talk, in the order in which they are mentioned: https://www.studentclearinghouse.org/nscblog/high-school-class-of-2020-college-enrollments-decline-22-compared-to-2019-class/ https://www.wsj.com/articles/college-university-fall-higher-education-men-women-enrollment-admissions-back-to-school-11630948233?st=8il0uebem3xdam8&mod=ffoct22 https://www.dailywire.com/news/college-enrollment-continues-to-decline https://townhall.com/columnists/walterewilliams/2017/08/09/is-college-education-worth-it-n2365439 https://thefederalist.com/2022/02/02/young-americans-leave-those-creepy-college-covid-camps-and-start-your-careers-now/ https://fordhaminstitute.org/national/commentary/upside-downward-trend-college-enrollment https://www.educationsuisse.ch/en/education-switzerland/swiss-educational-system/apprenticeship https://nypost.com/2022/11/19/the-college-debt-solution-let-kids-go-to-work-instead-of-school/ https://www.dol.gov/agencies/eta/apprenticeship/about/statistics/2020
58:26
December 09, 2022
Episode #1: Is Theatre "Essential"?
Episode #1: Is Theatre "Essential"?
In this episode we explore the premise of the podcast--that theatre is an essential part of our lives--and touch on some of the subjects we will be delving into in the upcoming weeks: theatre education, the entertainment industrial complex, the importance of community theatre, and much more. Recorded  15 November 2022 at the TotP Studio Theatre in Casper, Wyoming.
51:17
November 21, 2022
Trailer: Introducing "Theatre is Essential!"
Trailer: Introducing "Theatre is Essential!"
We are excited to launch our new podcast, Theatre is Essential!, hosted by Dr. William Conte, Artistic Director of the Theatre of the Poor in Casper, Wyoming. This 60 trailer introduces listeners to the themes and ideas we'll be exploring on a weekly basis. Thanks for listening!
01:04
February 23, 2022