Manhattanville Reid Castle In the Spring

Manhattanville College Professor Begins Residency Program at New Victory Theater

Christine DehneAssociate Professor Christine Dehne has begun a residency program at the New Victory Theatre in Times Square.
Associate Professor at Manhattanville College Christine Dehne recently began a yearlong residency at the New Victory Theater in Times Square, where she will develop and produce a performance for children.

“It’s huge for me because it is someone outside of your usual circle saying, ‘Hey, we support what you’re doing and believe in it,” she said, “It’s also nice to have this gift of space and time to focus on your craft, which is something that is really hard to come by.”

In addition to teaching at Manhattanville, Dehne works as an artist for the Spellbound Theatre, a Brooklyn-based theatre for kids, and will be joined by Lauren Jost, founder and artistic director of Spellbound, during the New Victory LabWorks residency. The two will be creating “Ear, Nose, and Tail,” a production about a dog that is not sure he is comfortable being a dog. The show, intended for children zero to 5-years-old, will be using different forms of puppetry, animation, and audience interaction. 

“The New Victory Theater is one of the premier children’s theaters in the country, so it’s a really prestigious residency and for Spellbound that’s a big deal,” Dehne, who teaches in the Studio Art and Communications & Media departments, said.

While Dehne will be creating animation for the show prior to each performance, she will also be drawing images that come to life based on audience reaction and feedback during each performance as well. She sees this as a challenge, but believes using technology in the classroom, which sometimes doesn’t work, helps her “roll with it,” and the live animation will be an extension of that.

Even though the residency program has already begun Dehne and Jost won’t have studio time until the beginning of September, and will only be in the studio several weeks throughout the year. The first performance of “Ears, Nose, and Tail,” will take place in June.