The Course: Improvisational Dramaturgy

In Spring of 2014, composers Sean Griffin and George Lewis, and theater/film artist Catherine Sullivan taught a course exploring interdisciplinary and improvisational strategies for performance. Coursework was integrated with the development of a staging of an operatic composition by Lewis. Titled Afterword, the piece further explores the ecology of Lewis' 2008 book, A Power Stronger Than Itself: The A.A.C.M. and American Experimental Music. Issues of public assembly, spatial language, music as social text, documentation, collaboration, and the dynamics of improvisation were explored in theory, history and practice. The class, made up of students from many disciplines, worked as an ensemble, contributing original material and working with various groups both on and off campus.