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Position: Assistant Professor of Scenic Design

Job ID: 2019269

Location: Storrs Campus

The Department of Dramatic Arts at the University of Connecticut invites applications for a full-time, tenure track position in Scenic Design at the rank of Assistant Professor. The successful candidate will teach scenic design in the Department’s BFA and MFA Design & Technical Theater program and will supervise student designers on Connecticut Repertory Theatre productions, which include four Main Stage productions, two Studio productions, and up to four small-scale student productions each year. The anticipated start date is August 23, 2019.

The University of Connecticut (UConn) is in the midst of a transformational period of growth supported by the $1.7B Next Generation Connecticut (http://nextgenct.uconn.edu/) and the $1B Bioscience Connecticut (http://biosciencect.uchc.edu/) investments and a bold new Academic Plan: Path to Excellence (http://issuu.com/uconnprovost/docs/academic-plan-single-hi-optimized_1). We are pleased to continue these investments by inviting applications for a faculty position in the Department of Dramatic Arts.

The Department of Dramatic Arts and its theatre production arm, the Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT), combine to create an exciting center for excellence in the dramatic arts. Each year, young theatre artists from across the United States choose to pursue education, training, and production experience through undergraduate and graduate study in the Department of Dramatic Arts and CRT. The goal of the department is two-fold. First, it aims to provide the finest possible professional training through classroom and studio instruction. Second, it aims to supplement and enrich that classroom and studio training by providing maximal opportunities for students to obtain professional level production experience through active participation in plays produced by the Connecticut Repertory Theatre.

Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT) is the production organization of the Department of Dramatic Arts. Through CRT, the Department produces a subscription series of plays and musicals during the academic year, as well as a separate series of plays during the summer. In mounting and producing plays, CRT operates in a manner that is essentially identical to a typical regional repertory theatre and it does so with similar artistic aspirations. In fact, CRT seeks to maintain active, working associations with regional repertory theatres whereby co-sponsored productions may originate at CRT and tour to the co-producing professional theatres. The CRT’s contract with the Actor’s Equity Association permits our acting majors, both graduate and undergraduate, to participate in the Equity Candidacy Program through which many of them are eligible for union membership upon their graduation.

The University of Connecticut is a comprehensive, public, Research 1 institution. The Storrs campus is located in a beautiful area of New England, with a moderate cost of living and proximity to major cultural, recreational, and urban centers of the Northeast. The University community provides residents with a rich diversity of cultural, artistic, athletic, and historic experiences, and the surrounding area offers affordable quality housing and top schools for faculty and families.


  • Teach undergraduate and graduate scenic design courses as assigned (2/3 teaching load), serve as a major advisor to MFA scenic design students and advise undergraduate BFA Scenic Design/Tech majors.
  • Candidate will take a leadership role in scenic design curriculum development and student recruitment for the program. Responsibilities include syllabi and course content for current scenic design courses.
  • Serve as an advisor for student designers during the design development process, during production meetings, as well as during the build phase and technical rehearsals.
  • Position includes supervision, with the shop managers, of Graduate Assistants and undergraduate students, student employees, and designers in the area of the scenic design program. The job expectations include collaboration with other members of the design faculty in the operation of the design and production programs.
  • Responsibilities may also include designing for CRT shows where there are no qualified students. It is the policy of the design faculty that first priority for design assignments go to graduate MFA candidates or BFA candidates and that faculty assume design responsibility only when there is not an appropriate student designer for a specific project.
  • Position includes supervision of projection design when required; advising student designers on content creation and playback.
  • Other responsibilities include: working with faculty, artists, and production representatives to review and ascertain needs for each production and supervise the preparation of scenic designs by scenic design students; participate in national recruiting for students in the Design & Technical Theatre area; career advisement for both post-graduation and summer opportunities, and serve on committees as assigned; Drama faculty frequently have production related obligations on evenings and weekends.
  • Other duties as assigned.

The successful candidate must also be willing and able to coordinate her/his efforts with those of design professors in the design program, directors and other artistic-staff members of CRT productions. The successful candidate will be expected to contribute to research and scholarship through impact as measured through citations, performances & exhibits, and national/international recognition through honorific awards. In the area of teaching, the successful candidate will share a deep commitment to effective instruction at the undergraduate and graduate levels, development of innovative courses and mentoring of students in research, outreach and professional development. Successful candidates will also be expected to broaden participation among members of under-represented groups; demonstrate through their research, teaching, and/or public engagement the richness of diversity in the learning experience; integrate multicultural experiences into instructional methods and research tools; leadership in developing pedagogical techniques designed to meet the needs of diverse learning styles and intellectual interests. Candidates will also be expected to participate in departmental and university service to support curricular and program development and advise undergraduate and graduate students in the department.


The successful candidate must have:

  1. A terminal degree (MFA or equivalent) in Scenic Design or related field. Equivalent foreign degrees are acceptable.
  2. 3 years of professional experience in scenic design.
  3. Demonstrated proficiency and ability to work in commercial theatre, regional theatre, as well as off-Broadway.
  4. Demonstrated proficiency in the use of design related software applications, including Vectorworks and/or AutoCAD, Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator.
  5. Evidence of familiarity with projection design including developing content and playback.
  6. Evidence of teaching skills, professional networking knowledge; experience working with college students and faculty.
  7. Excellent collaboration and communication skills; able to follow university procedures and policies, maintain confidentiality of student information; and be well versed in scheduling, planning, and organizational techniques.
  8. Some experience in other forms of performance besides theatre.


  1. Experience teaching at the college level, especially graduate level courses in Scenic Design
  2. Scenic painting and properties experience.
  3. Experience in developing content for projection design and working knowledge of Qlab, Watchout, Hippotizer or other media server software and networking for production support.
  4. Substantial experience in other areas of performance, including but not limited to Opera, Dance, Performance Art, Television or Industrial design.
  5. Experience in at least one design and technical theatre other than scenic design.


This is a full-time, 9-month, tenure track appointment with an expected start date of August 23, 2019. The successful candidate’s primary academic appointment will be at the Storrs campus. Faculty may also be asked to teach at one of UConn’s regional campuses as part of their ordinary workload. Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.


Please apply via UConn Jobs, Faculty Positions (https://hr.uconn.edu/faculty/), under the School of Fine Arts. Please upload the following materials:

  • Cover letter
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Contact information for three (3) references
  • Teaching statement (including teaching philosophy, teaching experience, commitment to effective learning, concepts for new course development, etc.)
  • Commitment to diversity statement (including broadening participation, integrating multicultural experiences in instruction and research and pedagogical techniques to meet the needs of diverse learning styles, etc.)

Evaluation of applicants will begin immediately, and applications will continue to be reviewed until the position is filled. Please contact Nisha Hardnett (nisha.hardnett@uconn.edu), Program Assistant for the Department of Dramatic Arts, with any questions.

For more information regarding the Department of Dramatic Arts, please visit the department website at https://drama.uconn.edu. For more information about Connecticut Repertory Theatre, please visit https://crt.uconn.edu.

Employment of the successful candidate will be contingent upon the successful completion of a pre-employment criminal background check. (Search #2019269)

This position will be filled subject to budgetary approval.

All employees are subject to adherence to the State Code of Ethics, which may be found at http://www.ct.gov/ethics/site/default.asp.

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