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GACA Collection 309. Department of Theatre and Dance. Collection of the Department of Theatre and Dance, 1916-Ongoing: Overview

Digital Content

Portions of this collection have been digitized and are available online through our digital collections.

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To learn more about this collection please see the finding aid link found above, and/or visit the College and Lutheran Church Archives to use these primary sources.

Collection Description

Department of Theatre and Dance.  Collection of the Department of Theatre and Dance, 1916-Ongoing.  GACA Collection 309.  5 Records Center Cartons, 3 Hollinger boxes, 2 half Hollinger boxes, 3 video boxes, 4 flat boxes, and digital media.

The Department of Theatre and Dance collection contains photographs, posters, programs, other publicity, recordings, histories, newsletters, and newspaper clippings.  Also included are budgets, course planning materials, department files, minutes, information about alumni.  The first theatre production at Gustavus Adolphus College was the all-college play The Queen’s Husband in May 1932.

Historical Note

In 2007, the Theatre and Dance Department celebrated its 75 year anniversary, dating back to the first all-college play, The Queen’s Husband in 1932.  Beginning in 1929, the Speech Department offered a Dramatic Production class.  Advanced Dramatic Production began in 1935 and Theory of Acting in 1945.  In 1970 the Speech Department changed its name to the Speech and Theatre Department.  Theatre became its own department in 1985 and added Dance to its title in 1990.

Scope and Content

This collection is divided into eight series: Academics; Administration; Alumni; Financial; Photographs, Slides and Negatives; Posters, Programs, and Publicity; Recordings; and Miscellaneous.

  • Academics, 1956-Ongoing contains materials about scholarships, accreditation standards, course planning, the Theatre Major, and summer programs.  Materials are organized alphabetically.
  • Administration, 1960s-Ongoing consists of department chair correspondence, general department files, meeting minutes, facility needs, policies, floor plans, and missions of the department.  Materials are organized alphabetically.
  • Alumni, 1981-Ongoing is composed mainly of clippings describing what alumni and faculty are doing in the entertainment industry.  Also included are newsletters, biographies, and surveys.  Materials are arranged alphabetically.
  • Financial, 1973-Ongoing holds grant requests and reports, budget proposals and reports.  Materials are arranged alphabetically.
  • Photographs, Slides, and Negatives, 1930s-Ongoing incorporates photos (both physical and digital) of theatre and dance productions, along with some miscellaneous photos of students and staff.  There are also a couple scrapbooks.  Materials are organized chronologically.
  • Posters, Programs, and Publicity, 1910s-Ongoing encompasses posters, programs, flyers, newspaper articles, and reviews of theatre and dance productions.  Materials are arranged chronologically.
  • Recordings, 1985-Ongoing has video recordings of theatre and dance performances.  All recording are on VHS unless otherwise marked.  Performance scripts, written by students, are also included.  Materials are arranged chronologically.
  • Miscellaneous, 1916-Ongoing includes anniversary and history materials, newsletters, newspaper clippings, set designs, costume inventory, library holdings, festival materials, and oral histories relating to the Theatre and Dance Department.  Materials are arranged alphabetically.
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