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Collection of Augustana College Theatre materials

 Collection
Identifier: MSS 357
The Collection of Augustana College Theatre materials dates from 1898 to the present. Materials have been grouped into series by organization: Augustana College Theatre, Augustana Musical Theatre, Augustana Opera Workshop, Augustana Players, Augustana Student Theatre, Elsinore Dramatic Club, Miscellaneous, Opera @ Augustana, Pitchfork Players, and Visiting Productions.

The Augustana College Theatre series (1898-present and undated) contains news clippings, programs, publicity materials (flyers, emails and mailings), and releases from Augustana College’s Office of Communication and Marketing. The Augustana Musical Theatre series (1967-1976) includes news clippings, programs, one flyer, and press releases. The Augustana Opera Workshop series (1976-1992) includes news clippings, programs, flyers, and press releases. The Augustana Players series (1961-1982 and undated) includes news clippings, programs, publicity materials (flyers and mailings), and press releases. The Augustana Student Theatre series (1977-1981) includes news clippings, programs, and press releases. The Elsinore Dramatic Club contains (1908) includes one program. The Miscellaneous series (1981-2000 and undated) contains historical information about theatre classes at Augustana College compiled by Special Collections librarians, news clippings, programs, one news release and a flyer. Most of this information pertains to theatre productions produced by various campus groups. The Opera @ Augustana series (1998-present) contains news clippings and publicity materials (emails and flyers). The Pitchfork Players series (1968-1979) includes historical information compiled by the Players themselves, news clippings, programs and publicity materials (flyers and mailings). The Visiting Productions series (1967-1988 and undated) includes news clippings, programs, publicity materials (flyers) and one news release. This information pertains to various theatrical productions produced by outside organizations and performed at Augustana College.

Dates

  • 1898-2010s

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from Augustana College Special Collections and the copyright holder.

Extent

0.9 Cubic Feet (/ 2 boxes and 1 oversize folder)

Overview

Augustana College offered its first courses in elocution and physical culture in 1897-1898, which likely included some elements of acting. In 1910-1911, the Department of Elocution and Physical Culture first offered a course in “dramatic expression.” This department eventually changed into the Theater Department. The Collection of Augustana College Theatre materials dates from 1898 to the present and measures 9.5 linear inches. It consists of ten series: Augustana College Theatre, Augustana Musical Theatre, Augustana Opera Workshop, Augustana Players, Augustana Student Theatre, Elsinore Dramatic Club, Miscellaneous, Opera @ Augustana, Pitchfork Players, and Visiting Productions.

Historical Note

Augustana College and Theological Seminary offered its first courses in elocution and physical culture in 1897-1898, which likely included some elements of acting. In 1910-1911, the Department of Elocution and Physical Culture first offered a course in “dramatic expression.” The following year, it became known as the Department of Elocution, and in 1919-1920, it became the School of Oral Expression. Starting in 1928-1929, theatre courses are listed under the School of Oral Expression and the Department of Public Speaking and Debate, which in 1929-1930 became the Department of Speech. In 1934-1935, the School of Oral Expression was dissolved, but the Speech Department continued a course in “Dramatic Art.” Augustana’s School of Oral Expression began producing one-act plays in the college chapel in the mid-1920s, and plays continued to be produced by each of the succeeding departments.

In the 1960s, a group called the Augustana Players began producing several plays a year. This continued until the mid-1980s, when plays began to be staged under the Theatre Department’s banner. The Theatre Department also ran a summer program, which was founded as the Paddle Wheel Players in 1968 and renamed the Pitchfork Players the next year. The Pitchfork Players dissolved in 1979.

The first student-run theatre organization was the Elsinore Dramatic Club, founded in 1905. The club started with readings, then progressed to producing short plays before eventually dissolving in 1912-1913. Augustana Musical Theatre, a student organization that donated all of its proceeds to charity, produced its first musical in the spring of 1967. The group continued to produce an annual musical until the 1977-1978 school year, when it changed its name to Augustana Student Theatre and began producing plays. The group dissolved in 1981.

Opera has also been produced at Augustana College, first by the Augustana Opera Workshop, and, more recently, by Opera @ Augustana, both of which were collaborations between the music and theatre departments.

Arrangement

The materials in this collection are arranged alphabetically by theatre group, and then alphabetically by format.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Immediate source of acquisition unknown. Fall term 2018 posters and programs received from Corynn Hajdys, October 2018.

Accruals

Augustana College Special Collections continues to add materials to this collection on a regular basis.

Processing Information

Rukmini Girish, 2013; Updated by Samantha Crisp, June 2014; Revised by Atticus Garrison, September 2015.
Title
Collection of Augustana College Theatre materials, 1898-2010s.
Status
completed
Author
Atticus Garrison
Date
September 2015
Description rules
dacs
Language of description
English

Repository Details

Part of the Augustana College Special Collections Repository

Contact:
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Thomas Tredway Library
Rock Island Illinois 61201 United States