Durango Telegraph - Coach Carson
Coach Carson

Tony Kushner’s “Angels in America” is a director’s dream. Fort Lewis College visiting faculty member Theresa Carson jumped at the chance to put Part II on stage.

“This is great play,” Carson said in a telephone interview earlier this week, “and this is one of the best group of actors I’ve ever had. They all like each other. There is no conflict, and each actor is willing to take risks.”

Carson took a risk in 2004 when she left a full-time assistant professorship at Minnesota State University for a visiting slot at Fort Lewis College. In Minnesota, she taught acting styles and techniques as well as introductory courses in theatre and speech. At FLC, she has taught modern drama, acting techniques and a specialty – stage combat. Her choreographing expertise can be seen in “Angels in America.”

When Carson completed her master of fine arts in theatre arts

from the University of Utah, she concentrated on directing. Her directing credits include Shaw, Lorca, Sophocles, Chekhov, Kushner and, of course, Shakespeare. Last spring Carson directed FLC students in a visually sumptuous “Much Ado About Nothing.” During the summer of 2000 she was a guest director for the Durango Shakespeare Festival. Her concept for “As You Like It” gave the players Southern accents and put them in a down-home setting with American bluegrass.

Like many directors, Carson came to her craft through acting and has appeared in a large number of roles. She brings all that experience to her own company, Durango Acting Studio, where she teaches theater classes for children and adults. In May she will direct and act in a production of “Parallel Lives” through her studio. The performance will be at the Diamond Circle Melodrama.

– Judith Reynolds

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