Monthly Archives: February 2016

SMART PEOPLE – Chuck Smith Interview

by Melinda Menard

University Theatre sat down with our visiting guest artist director, Chuck Smith, to collect his thoughts on our upcoming production of Lydia R. Diamond’s SMART PEOPLE.


University Theatre will tackle the dynamics of race with Lydia R. Diamond’s critically-acclaimed play, SMART PEOPLE, directed by renowned Chicago theatre director, Chuck Smith. Inspired by actual research on implicit bias, Diamond’s play directs our focus to a fictional academic study of neurological responses the brain has to racial images. A diverse quartet of young professionals, representing African-American, Chinese-Japanese-American and white ethnicities, will see their lives intertwine over the two years leading up to President Barack Obama’s first election. A seamless blend of controversy, sexuality and fast-paced comedy, SMART PEOPLE takes a provocative look at one of the most hot-button topics in America, posing the question of whether or not our beliefs and prejudices are hard-wired.

The University of Wisconsin – Madison’s Department of Theatre and Drama is proud to partner with the Department of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement and the Anonymous Block Grant on this production.

Dane Styczynski (MFA ’15) Chosen as USITT Winner!

by Melinda Menard

Dane Styczynski

Dane Styczynski, University of Wisconsin-Madison, MFA 2015

“The quality of his projects and presentation is very high … The work shows an ability to find and executive creative solutions for a varied assortment of production requirements.”

Stage Directions just released USITT’s 2016 Young Designers and Technician Awards.