Chairwoman, would like her students to learn, it's how to be flexible.
close to the cast and crew, then it closes and you move on to something
else," said Oster. "You have to learn to be flexible in this business. It's
also an important life lesson," she added.
musical theater and children's theater, Oster started teaching at
Middlesex in 2003 and became chairwoman in 2006. As the head of a
small, but growing department that has been limited by lack of a
permanent performance space, she knows all about flexibility.
major student production each semester, as well as MCC's improvisation
troupe, Random Acts. She likes to stage a dramatic production in the
fall (including a Shakespearean play every other year), and a musical
in the spring.
explore and discover without judgment; a place for them to be exposed
to all genres of theater, from the classics and contemporary works, to
musical theater. Over a two-year period, there is quite a bit of variety."
move shows to different performance venues at the last minute. The
MCC Theatre, a leased performance space, overlooked the Concord
River in Lowell and flooded twice. It was closed altogether last spring,
which required moving "Sweeney Todd" to Merrimack College two
weeks before opening.
and in a short period of time. But, in the big scheme of things, it was a
valuable lesson for the students in teamwork and flexibility," said
Oster. "We all had to pull together to make it work and we did!
happen anywhere," she added. "And if you keep an open mind, there
is a lot more that can happen."
which should be coming soon when MCC's Boston & Maine Building
opens as an academic arts center on the Lowell campus in a few years.
happen to us, ever," said Oster. Once the new facility is up and
running, she hopes to expand Performing Arts programs. "I'd like to
add a certificate program in dance, as well as a certificate in technical
theater that's anything that happens behind the stage: lights, sets,
costumes and sound."
to self-discovery, explained Oster. "Some people think acting is a way to
escape reality and run away from yourself. But it's really a place to run
toward yourself and explore the essence of who you really are."
Performing Arts Department Chairwoman