November 12 - November 14, 2021
24th Annual Theatre Forum at Round Top
Garland Goodwin Wilson, B.J. Dodge,
J.E. Hernández, Stephanie Sermas,
Tom Foral, Felicia Hardison Londré,
Ann Thomson, Sonja Bruzauskas,
Kate Pogue
Of Moving Colors Dance Company


2021 Theatre Forum Brochure Cover
24th Annual Theatre Forum: Twists, Turns and Twirls

Friday November 12 - Sunday November 14, 2021

   In the spirit of exploring the relations of theatre and other art forms, we invite Dance into our midst this year. Movement is a vital part of any form of theatre, whether it is stylized or not. I like to think of Rhythm and Song being the two original parts of human expression, going back to the heartbeat and the voice. Moving forward in time, these essential parts were stylized, and they developed into art forms. Theatre is based on these original forms of expression, and we are excited to explore the essence of this relationship over centuries and decades.

   Our special guest will be Of Moving Colors, a contemporary dance theater company based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In addition, for the second year we are inviting students to be part of the Theatre Forum in a workshop lead by B.J. Dodge.

   Please join us at Round Top this fall. I cannot wait to see you!
         - Sonja Bruzauskas, Theatre Forum Director


Presenters joining Sonja Bruzauskas are Garland Goodwin Wilson, J.E. Hernández, Stephanie Sermas, B.J. Dodge, Ann Thompson, Felicia Hardison Londré, Tom Foral and Kate Pogue. See bios below.

     Click here to view downloadable brochure.
        To request a brochure by mail, email reservations@festivalhill.org or call 979-249-3129.

Take full advantage of the picturesque Festival Hill Campus. The three-day Theatre Forum also offers a tour of grounds and buildings, morning walks with Ann Thompson, and appetizing meals in the Victorian-style Menke House dining hall, as well as an open-air lunch in the lush Menke gardens on Saturday. Though casual dress is the norm for events, formal dress is encouraged for the Saturday evening reception in the Menke House Parlours followed by a gourmet dinner in the dining hall.

Overnight accommodations are available. Complimentary breakfast is included. Please call the office or email reservations@festivalhill.org to check availability and make reservations.

Refund/Cancellation Policy: A 20% cancellation fee for registration, meals and lodging applies until October 16. No refunds will be issued after October 16.

Office/Information/Reservations: 979-249-3129

Location Information below.


Performances and Talks

Voces Fantasmas: A Reflection on Immigration Detention through Music, Theatre, Film and Dance
    - Friday at 7:30 p.m., Talk by J.E. Hernández, Edythe Bates Old Chapel

Theatre/Dance Workshop
    - Saturday at 9:00 a.m. - noon, Concert Hall Stage

“Nimble Feet and Sparkling Wit: The Dancing King and the Comic Genius” - Molière and the Sun King
    - Saturday at 9:30 a.m., Talk by Felicia Londré, Edythe Bates Old Chapel

“From Lully To Le Docteur Veron, Manager of the Paris Opéra: The Changing Role of Ballet in Opera”
    - Saturday at 11:00 a.m., Talk by Ann Thompson, Edythe Bates Old Chapel

Let’s Have A Dance! The Role of Dance in the Plays of William Shakespeare
    - Saturday at 1:30 p.m., Talk by Kate Pogue, Edythe Bates Old Chapel

Theatre/Dance Workshop
    - Saturday at 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m., Concert Hall Stage

Hail Terpsichore! Broadway Dance, Hollywood Dance, and Back Again
    - Saturday at 3:30 p.m., Talk by Tom Foral, Edythe Bates Old Chapel

“Sofa Stories”
    - Saturday at 8:30 p.m., Performance by Of Moving Colors Productions, Concert Hall Stage

The Role of Theatre in Dance Education
    - Sunday at 10:00 a.m., Talk by Stephanie Sermas and BJ Dodge, Concert Hall Stage

Presentation by Theater and Dance Students
    - Sunday at 10:30 a.m., Concert Hall Stage

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Biographies

Sonja Bruzauskas
Sonja Bruzauskas - Born and raised in Germany, Sonja Bruzauskas was trained on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. Besides her expansive stage career in musical theater, opera and operetta, Sonja is a well-established concert singer and recitalist, focusing on German Art Song and contemporary music. Appearances include the Staatsoperette Dresden, the Santa Fe Opera, Volkstheater Rostock, Nordharzer Staedtebundtheater, Babelsberger Filmorchester, Bochumer Symphoniker, Baton Rouge Symphony , Da Camera, the Bach Society Houston, Mercury, the Greenbriar Consortium, the Houston Chamber Orchestra, the Houston Chamber Choir, ROCO, Round Top Festival Institute and Ars Lyrica. Sonja has sung and lectured at institutions such as CalArts, Vanderbilt, LSU, Rice University, the University of Houston, Philosophical Society of Houston as well as numerous health institutions. Sonja is the founder and director of pARTnerschools, a project that connects students through the Arts to empower diversity and strengthen communities.

BJ Dodge
B.J. Dodge - is a semi-retired teaching artist working in Orange and Los Angeles Counties. She worked at California Institute Of The Arts for many years, primarily as a facilitator and director for CalArts' Community Arts Partnership Youth Theatre Program, in Lincoln Heights, at Plaza de la Raza. She has trained in Suzuki and the Viewpoints in L.A., and with the S.I.T.I. Company, and now offers survey courses in movement and theatre for social justice, at OCSA. She also chairs the theatre discipline at California State Summer School for the Arts, and collaborates as a director whenever opportunity calls.

Tom Foral
Tom Foral - returns from New York and Pennsylvania, for his 21st annual Theatre Forum. Tom's undergraduate degree is from Northwestern and he holds an MFA in Theatre from Penn State. His performing experience includes shows on Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional theatre, plus film and television. As a painter and designer, Tom specializes in portraiture and figurative work. He has painted, among others, H.S.H. Princess Grace, Bill Blass, Audrey Hepburn, Eudora Welty, Gwen Verdon and Roberto Bolle. He's been showing his work in New York and Bucks County, and was recently shown at the Metropolitan Opera House. To see his work, visit thomasforal.com.

JE Hernandez
J.E. Hernández - is a Mexican-born, Houston-based composer and cinematographer focusing on elevating personal and cultural narrative through his work. J.E.'s music has been featured by distinguished ensembles and organizations such as the Brazil National Orchestra, Apollo Chamber Players, Foundation for Modern Music, Exalted Arts, and in a wide variety of films, both in the United States and abroad (Slovakia, Mexico, U.K.). He holds his BM in Composition from the Moores School of Music, where he studied with Marcus Maroney. J.E.'s work focuses on both traditional and multi-disciplinary mediums, and he has collaborated with directors, choreographers, and playwrights. His interest in incorporating his cultural heritage from both his native Tabasco, Mexico, and Houston, Texas led J.E. to create Concertia, a non-profit arts organization for social causes. Its mission statement reads: “to empower social causes through the prism of new music and multi-media art,” resonating with his goal as a composer to engage the community at large. Recent and upcoming projects include Xul, a narrative focusing on the 60 days J.E. spent in a deportation detention center in 2013, commissioned by the São Paulo Contemporary Composer's Festival in collaboration with the Brazil National Orchestra, Mary's Song, commissioned by Exalted Arts for multi-disciplinary medium, and SHEER, a piano trio/film piece to be premiered alongside Ravel's Piano Trio for a World War I memorial.
 
Felicia Hardison Londre
Felicia Hardison Londré - is recently retired as Curators' Distinguished Professor of Theatre at the University of Missouri-Kansas City where she taught theatre history for 41 years. She earned her B.A. in French at the University of Montana, then, following a Fulbright year at the Université de Caen in Normandy, France, she earned her M.A. in Romance Languages at the University of Washington and her Ph.D. in Speech/Theatre at the University of Wisconsin. She received the ATHE Outstanding Teacher of Theatre in Higher Education Award in 2001. She is the author of 18 books. Her 12th book, The Enchanted Years of the Stage: Kansas City at the Crossroads of American Theater, 1870-1930, won the prestigious George Freedley Memorial Award for 2008. Felicia was inducted into The College of Fellows of the American Theatre in 1999 and served as Dean of the College 2012-14.

Kate Pogue
Kate Pogue - Founder and producer of 20 previous Round Top Theatre Forums, Kate Pogue is a playwright, librettist and theatre director. She received an undergraduate degree in theatre from Northwestern and an M.A. from the University of Minnesota. For 10 years she was Artistic Director of Opera to Go, now the school outreach program for Houston Grand Opera. A student of Carlisle Floyd and member of the Houston Opera Studio she has written a dozen opera librettos for children and five librettos for adult productions with composers Mary Carol Warwick, Sterling Tinsley, Robert Nelson and Henry Mollicone. During this time she was also artistic director of The Shakespeare by the Book Festival. Her book Shakespeare's Friends was published in January 2006 and a companion volume, Shakespeare's Family, came out in June 2008. Her recent books involve Shakespeare's training and include Shakespeare's Figures of Speech (2010) and Shakespeare's Education (2012). A recent project involved directing Shakespeare's Julius Caesar in the original pronunciation. She is retired from the University of Houston Downtown.

Stephanie Sermas
Stephanie Sermas - is a certified educator in both Dance and Theatre in the state of Texas. She attended Georgetown University, where she received a degree in International Business and Marketing. She later received a M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Houston. Since obtaining her Master’s Degree in 2013, She has worked as a dance teacher and a technical theatre teacher in both public and private education. As an educator, Stephanie has been able to apply real world career knowledge to her lessons. She has performed with Houston City Dance Professional Company since 2010, and has choreographed for the company for several seasons. Her work has been showcased in Houston, but also abroad at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. She has also worked in technical theatre, taking turns at stage management, light board operation, and soundboard operation. She also practices visual art, focusing on abstract painting and set design for her own choreography. Her knowledge and experience among these artistic disciplines makes her well suited to address arts education in the classroom.

Ann Thompson
Ann Thompson - Born in Indonesia of Dutch descent, Ann Thompson had lived in many different places in the world before landing in Houston in 1960. Having received the benefits of a classical European education she decided that opera was the perfect subject for deploying the results thereof, advocating, in the process, for the humanities in general and the performing arts in particular. Once she spoke four and a half languages but is now reduced, alas, to two: Dutch and English. Privileged to have experienced a many faceted background during her four score and plus lifetime, and driven by fiercely intellectual curiosity, she delights in finding connections between disparate subjects and elaborating upon them to her many and varied audiences.
 
Garland Wilson
Garland Goodwin Wilson - has served as the Artistic Director for Of Moving Colors Productions for two decades where she has created over 25 original full length dance works in the last twenty years. As director, performer, choreographer and teacher, she has worked extensively in Louisiana and across the globe with venues, companies and centers including the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Dance New Amsterdam, Windows International, TNZTT dance theatre, Hong Kong International School, Ho Chi Minh City Dancers, Impulstanz and the José Limón Institute, Garland is honored to be listed as one of the 16 Dance Fellows in Louisiana. Her training began in Louisiana under Madalyn Montegudo and Marianne Hebert. Studying under Sylvia Martinez additionally inspired her love of theatre. She received her BA in Theatre from Louisiana State University and has trained under and facilitated residencies with artists such as Netta Yerushalmy, Christian Von Howard, Irene Rampino and Emily Plauche-Flink. Garland serves as a member of the Advisory Board for Palissimo in NYC and first performed at the Round Top Theatre Forum alongside Sonja Bruzauskas in 2013. Information about the dancers performing in this year's theatre festival may be found on OMC's website at www.ofmovingcolors.org and www.ofmovingcolors.org/companydancers.

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Location Information

Festival Hill Campus Location (one-half mile north of Round Top on State Highway 237): 248 Jaster Rd, Round Top, TX 78954
     Google Map
Service Building Location: #22 on Campus Map
Edythe Bates Old Chapel Location: #8 on Campus Map
Concert Hall Location: #6 on Campus Map
Menke House Location: 141 Jaster Rd, Round Top, TX 78954 #16 on Campus Map

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