Stage and screen, theater and gallery attract '01s

by Sabrina Peric | 6/10/01 5:00am

Usually, it isn't the salary that attracts students to jobs in arts-related fields. For graduates going into the arts, it is the love of their discipline that pushes them to go forward.

Andy Hoey '01, who is double majoring in drama modified with film and history, plans to study at the Royal Academy of the Dramatic Arts in London before moving to New York City to "try his hand" at auditioning.

"To be honest, I'm pretty freaked out ... but I know that I'll regret it if I don't at least give it a shot," Hoey said.

Active in several departments, Hoey has performed in a number of drama productions -- most recently in "Art" -- and had his movie, "The Runner," screened at the Dartmouth Student Film Festival.

"My most valuable theater experience was 'Sheep's Milk on the Boil,'" he said. "Because the play was set in a totally different mythological universe, it allowed me a freedom of expression that I hadn't previously experienced because I wasn't worried about doing the 'wrong thing.'"

"I grew a lot as a person," Hoey said of his arts experience, particularly after having the opportunity to intern with the Jim Henson Company.

Laura Stuart '01 never questioned her involvement in the arts. What plagued her was to what extent she would be involved in the pursuit of her musical dreams.

A music and romance languages double major, Stuart directed a children's choir for the Handel Society and twice participated in Opera North's summer apprenticeship program.

Stuart counts playing the role of Morgana in last year's production of the Handel opera "Alcina" as one of her most valuable arts experiences at Dartmouth.

"In short, my feelings about going into the arts on a professional level are optimistic and realistic at the same time," Stuart said. "I'm not expecting that I'll be a star right away -- or ever, for that matter. But stardom doesn't necessarily have to be the point."

Stuart will be attending the New England Conservatory in Boston next year to study opera. "To make music is and will continue to be the joy of my life," Stuart affirmed.

"I think I love art, especially music, because it is so involved with emotions," Sarah Craft '01, also a vocal performer at Dartmouth, said. "It is created from emotions and it inspires or produces emotions."

Craft recently produced "La Serva Padrona," an Italian opera in which she co-starred with Brian Jacobs '02, in Collis Commonground.

She sang with the Dodecaphonics a capella group and has had the opportunity to meet and work with visiting artists, including Yo-Yo Ma and the Brazilian group Uakti.

"I know going into the arts will not likely be an easy path," this Italian modified with music major said, "but I couldn't be happy doing anything else."

While Craft plans on applying and auditioning for graduate school in vocal performance, she is taking this upcoming year off and working.

"I'm willing to risk being disappointed at times, not making much money," she said, "because I believe in doing what you love."

Like Craft and Stuart, studio art major Katherine Norton '01 is also planning on attending graduate school after Commencement. She will be pursuing her Masters of Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania this fall.

"I love being able to create tangible things," Norton said. "I feel like it's an extension of myself, and like the idea that I have the ability to create things that make the world a better place, merely by having people look and think about them."

Taking studio art classes was a defining factor of Norton's Dartmouth experience. Expanding her options, her interest in Asian religions drove her to pursue a religion major.

Eventually, Norton would like to settle down as a sculpture professor at a private university and try to also exhibit her work in galleries throughout the country.

Other students intend to maintain their artistic interests while pursuing another career.

Aaron Pearson '01 is one such example. Relocating to New York City next year, Pearson plans "to continue painting and get a job doing something that isn't arts related."

Pearson said he did not really make a choice choose to go into arts.

"[Art] is part of who I am and always has been. However, I did make decision to pursue painting here because it was the subject of study that I would get the most out of," he said.

During his time at Dartmouth, he visited the Hood Museum of Art at least twice a week and attended many exhibitions.

"The Studio Art Department Exhibitions ... are quite good and have brought some very nice shows to the Jaffe Friede Gallery in the Hop," Pearson stated.

Suzanne Wrubel '01 is expecting next year to be a very frightening time for her. The film studies and philosophy double major is planning to go back home to the West Coast to pursue her interest in screenwriting.

During her four years at the College, Wrubel was involved in producing, directing and writing at DTV as well as working as the music director for WDCR radio station.

In an interesting cross-discipline adventure, Wrubel designed the multimedia component for the drama department's "Small Craft Warnings," a culminating project in directing by Jim McNicholas '01 performed this past fall.

Though arts is "a lot more fun than molecular biology," Wrubel admitted that "it's pretty frightening because there really is no set path for arts people, but in a way, that's what makes the whole thing exciting and interesting."