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New year, new faculty appointments at UW Drama

Submitted by Holly Arsenault on September 28, 2017 - 4:21pm

The University of Washington School of Drama, under the leadership of Executive Director Todd London, is announcing several new faculty appointments. 

Professor Tim Bond will take over from Professor Valerie Curtis-Newton as head of the Professional Actor Training Program (MFA, Acting). Curtis-Newton, who has served a decade as Head of Performance overseeing both the MFA Acting and Directing programs, will remain head of the Professional Director Training Program (MFA, Directing), a position she has held since 2006.

Associate Professor Deborah Trout will take over leadership of the MFA in Design program, while current Design head, Professor Geoff Korf, will transition into the newly-created role of Faculty Liaison for Production, working to further align production and pedagogy.

Finally, Senior Lecturer L. Zane Jones and Associate Professor Scott Magelssen will jointly head the Bachelor of Arts program, taking the reins from Associate Professor Andrew Tsao, who has served in the role for seven years.

“When it comes to faculty leadership at the School of Drama,” says Executive Director Todd London, “we have an embarrassment of riches. After nearly a decade of stable leadership within our five areas of study—BA, MFA Design, Directing, and Acting, and PhD—it seems like an ideal time to expand our executive faculty, divide the labor, cultivate new leaders, and share responsibility more broadly. It’s an exciting moment, as our four area directors become seven.”


Tim Bond, an alumnus of the University of Washington School of Drama Professional Director Training Program (PDTP), is the new head of the Professional Actor Training Program (PATP). The PATP is a 3-year conservatory program founded in 1961 by Gregory A. Falls. Consistently ranked among the top MFA Acting degree programs in the country, the PATP accepts six students each year. Alumni include Kyle McLachlan, a film and television actor known for his roles in Twin Peaks (2 Emmy nominations) and Sex and the City, Pamela Reed, An Obie-winning veteran of stage and screen known widely for roles in such hit series as Parks and Rec and locally for numerous portrayals, including playing Martha in Seattle Rep’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Amy Kim Waschke, a member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival Acting Company who has recently earned acclaim for her work in Vietgone, The Winter’s Tale, and The White Snake, in which she played the title role, and Broadway Producer Ron Simons, who, along with his fellow producers, won the 2017 Tony Award for Best Revival for Jitney. Local PATP alums include Marya Sea Kaminski, Associate Artistic Director at Seattle Repertory Theatre and Marc Kenison, the “boylesque” performance pioneer best known for his alter-ego, Waxie Moon.

Tim Bond returned to UW after a nine-year stint as Producing Artistic Director of Syracuse Stage and the Syracuse University Department of Drama. Prior to that, he was an Associate Artistic Director at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, where he directed 12 productions and created the FAIR Program, which cultivates the next generation of diverse theatre artists and administrators. Tim began his career in Seattle with Seattle Group Theatre (aka The Group), where he directed over 20 productions and curated the nationally-recognized MultiCultural Playwright’s Festival. During his last five seasons at The Group, Tim served as Artistic Director.

Tim’s globe-spanning directing career includes work in Seattle at Seattle Repertory Theatre, ACT Theatre, The Empty Space, The Paul Robeson Theatre, and Seattle Children’s Theatre, and outside Seattle at The Market Theatre (Johannesburg), The Baxter (Cape Town), The Guthrie (Minneapolis), Milwaukee Rep, The Wilma Theatre (Philadelphia), Arena Stage (Washington D.C.), GEVA Theatre (Rochester), Cleveland Playhouse, Indiana Rep, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Arizona Theatre Company, and Portland Center Stage.

Tim is considered one of the foremost interpreters of the work of his late colleague, playwright August Wilson. He has directed seven of the ten plays that comprise Wilson’s Century Cycle—including the Seattle Rep productions of Fences and The Piano Lesson—and has committed to directing all ten. Tim earned his BFA in Drama Arts from Howard University and his MFA in Directing from the University of Washington School of Drama. This fall, he will direct his first show as UW Drama faculty, Lynn Nottage’s By the Way, Meet Vera Stark.

"I am honored and excited to lead the PATP program into its next phase following the amazing legacy of leadership including, of course, my magnanimous predecessor Valerie Curtis-Newton.

I hope to deepen our program’s relationship with Seattle and West Coast theatre companies and look forward to collaborating with my colleagues on faculty to cultivate the next generation of transformational actors for the stage and screen."


The University of Washington MFA in Design is a 3-year program founded in 1940 and established as an MFA program in 1976 to train scenic, costume, and lighting designers. The program counts scores of alumni working at the highest levels of the arts and entertainment industries, including Christopher Brown, an L.A.-based production designer who earned 5 Emmy nominations for his work as Art Director on the television series Mad Men, Andrew Lieberman, who currently serves as head of Scenic Design at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, costume designer Mairi Chisholm, who was recently nominated for a Costume Designer’s Guild Award for her work on the television series Sleepy Hollow, and light installation artist Ben Zamora, whose work has been seen at such diverse locales as Coachella, Park Avenue Armory, and the Hammer Museum, alongside such collaborators as Peter Sellars, Kronos Quartet, and the Berlin Philharmonic.

Costume designer Deborah Trout, new Head of Design, trained at the Yale School of Drama and has designed at ACT Theatre, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, Alliance Theatre Company, Arizona Theatre, the Children's Theatre in Minneapolis, Denver Center Theatre, Intiman Theatre, Juneau's Perseverance Theatre, Manhattan School of Music, PCPA Theaterfest, Portland Center Stage, Seattle Children's Theatre, Seattle Opera, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Syracuse Stage and off off Broadway among others. She has also designed clothes for the Oregon, Idaho and Santa Cruz Shakespeare Festivals. She was co-founder of the New York based commercial millinery business Mackey and Trout. Ms. Trout is a member of United Scenic Artists Local 829.

“Our contemporary world is visually rich and robust,” says Professor Trout. “That theatre is an art form that brings our eyes, our ears, our voices, and the warmth of our human bodies into one room, continues to excite me. The images and sounds we bring to the stage, and so into our minds and hearts, are endless, and therefore we are ever ready for new voices to join in the art making. As I begin my tenure as Head of Design, I am deeply proud to be part of our team of stellar faculty and staff who each bring their love of design and craft to the live-wired minds of our students. Professors Korf, Lynch, Mercier, Smith and I, as well as our staff and remarkable adjunct faculty, are all eager to meet and mentor our new students who will continue to explore this vivid language of visual storytelling.”


The Bachelor of Arts in Drama offers a broad-based, liberal arts education with a focus on dramatic history, literature, criticism, and production. Undergraduate majors can choose to specialize in Drama Scholarship, Drama Performance, or Drama Design.

The BA program is home to approximately 75 undergraduate majors, 40 percent of whom are double majors with subjects as varied as History, Biology, and Business Administration. Students enjoy up to 20 opportunities each year to participate in productions, including shows produced by the Undergraduate Theatre Society, a registered student organization that presents a full season of work each year in the Cabaret Theatre in Hutchinson Hall.

Alumni of the BA program include costume designer Allison Leach (Mad Men, Glee), Producer Linsey Bostwick (Senior Producer, NYU Abu Dhabi), playwright Tommy Smith (Firemen), poet Ada Limón (Bright Dead Things, 2015 National Book Award finalist), and actors Aaron Blakely (Man in the High Castle), Mariana Klaveno (True Blood), and Lois Smith (East of Eden, The Grapes of Wrath, Buried Child, Two Tony nominations, Obie Lifetime Achievement Award, American Theatre Hall of Fame).

L. Zane Jones
, new co-Head of the BA Program, began her career as an actor in Chicago, after studying at the conservatory formerly known as the Goodman School of Drama (now The Theatre School at DePaul University). She has worked extensively as an actor in theatre, film, and television for over 30 years, and has directed over 30 productions in Los Angeles and Seattle. She studied directing and feminist theory at the University of Southern California before joining the performance faculty there, on which she served from 1994 – 2012. She is the founder and Artistic Director of Civic Rep, a creative collective committed to working with classic text and new work for the stage. At UW, Professor Jones teaches acting and directing to graduate and undergraduate students.

Dr. Scott Magellsen, new co-Head of the BA Program, holds a PhD in Theatre History, Theory, and Dramatic Literature from the University of Minnesota. His work treats the ways tourism, businesses, and the military use live simulation and performance to create and reinforce meaning for participants. His most recent book, Simming: Participatory Performance and the Making of Meaning, was published in 2014 by University of Michigan Press. Dr. Magellsen is the Editor of Southern Illinois University Press's Theater in the Americas series and co-edits the website with Henry Bial. At UW, he teaches theatre history, criticism, and dramatic literature to undergraduates and doctoral students.

Of her new appointment, L. Zane Jones says, “I am thrilled to have this opportunity to build on the excellent work of Professor Andrew Tsao and to collaborate with my colleague Scott Magelssen going forward.  Together we will work hard to make the undergraduate program at the School of Drama one of the best on the West Coast. Seattle is an exciting and vital arts center and UW has always been a part of that—we hope to continue to build strong ties of community and arts-making within the walls of Hutchinson Hall and in the city as well.”


Founded in 1940 by Glenn Hughes, UW Drama is consistently ranked among the top theatre training programs in the country. Emerging actors, directors, designers, and performance scholars come from all over the globe to study with our world-class faculty and prominent guest artists. We offer a Bachelor of Arts in Drama with specializations in scholarship, performance, and design, a Master of Fine Arts in Acting, Directing, and Design, and a PhD in Dramatic History, Theory, and Criticism.

We produce a full season in three intimate spaces on the UW campus: The Hughes Penthouse Theatre (the first theatre-in-the-round ever built in the U.S.), The Jones Playhouse Theatre, and the Meany Studio Theatre.

The School’s Executive Director is Todd London. Professor Odai Johnson heads the PhD Program. Professor Valerie Curtis-Newton heads the MFA in Directing. Associate Professor Deborah Trout heads the MFA in Design. Professor Tim Bond heads the MFA in Acting. Senior Lecturer L. Zane Jones and Associate Professor Scott Magellsen head the BA Program.