Daniel Rairdin-Hale's Upcoming Sabbatical


03/07/2018

Anyone who has met Daniel Rairdin-Hale knows he has a never-ending well of energy and is always willing to experiment and start new projects.

One of his most recent projects was this year's Fresh Face Revue, which he was in charge of planning and directing. While organizing the event, he grouped all the pieces under one theme of "Happiness" and included new group numbers and small introductory framing scenes before the students' pieces, things that have not been done in recent Fresh Face Revues. In keeping with that same sense of energy and exploration, Rairdin-Hale already has big plans for his sabbatical in Spring 2019 - and if everything goes as planned, he will be creating an even larger show than the Fresh Face Revue!

Sabbaticals offer many options to professors. Some use this time to work on a book or present at an academic conference. Other options include working at other universities or building up their personal experience and skill set so that they can offer more to their students. In the past, current theatre professors Dr. Cory Johnson and Kris Eitrheim have used their sabbaticals to attend workshops and classes; travel; and direct, act in, or design a university or professional show.

One primary goal of Rairdin-Hale's sabbatical plans is creating a show; he will be adapting a popular children's book to the stage that will be performed locally and toured elsewhere. Right now the show is in the very earliest stages of development while he and two other SAU Theatre alumni brainstorm possibilities. Because they are all currently busy with teaching, writing, and/or acting responsibilities, they meet once a month until Rairdin-Hale's sabbatical begins and they start working on it in earnest. The sabbatical will include scene workshopping, mask making (as seen in Rairdin-Hale's masks for Commedia dell'arte and The Tempest), rehearsing, coordinating marketing, performing, touring, and possibly even more!

dan hale with students

Dan Rairdin-Hale

Preach what you teach

"An important quality for any professor is to be able to practice what they preach," he said. "This production, this sabbatical, will allow me the extra time to do some acting myself, to develop a piece of theatre, and do what I teach about."

Rairdin-Hale says that he is excited about creating the show during his sabbatical, not only for the possibilities it offers him but also for the benefits it offers his students. Rairdin-Hale teaches various theatre, acting, and movement classes, and aspects of all of these will be used as he works on the production.

Rairdin-Hale believes that having current experience will make him a more knowledgeable professor.

"An important quality for any professor is to be able to practice what they preach," he said. "This production, this sabbatical, will allow me the extra time to do some acting myself, to develop a piece of theatre, and do what I teach about."

Returning to class with more professional experience will impact Rairdin-Hale's understanding of the material he teaches, allowing him to bring even more knowledge to his students.

Though he'll certainly be missed in classes next spring semester, Rairdin-Hale has quite the exciting experience ahead of him! In keeping with his most recent show, let's wish him happiness and good luck with all of his plans!

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