Winthrop University: Arts at Winthrop
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Arts at Winthrop
112 McLaurin Hall
Rock Hill, SC 29733
803/323-2333 (fax)

ArtsWinthrop - About Us

ArtsWinthrop promotes exceptional music, theatre, dance and visual arts programming for the Winthrop University campus, community, and regional audiences. Explore all that ArtsWinthrop has to offer by clicking the events tab on our main menu or connect with us on social media. With over 100 free events a year, there is something for everyone! 

To purchase tickets to theatre and dance productions, please click here.



Fall Audition Dates for Theatre and Dance Productions Announced

The Addams Family Musical

     Tuesday, Aug. 20 at 6:30 p.m. in Johnson Hall Lobby

     Performance Dates: October 2-6, 2019

     Sign up for an audition time in Johnson Hall theatre callboard (by the elevator). Call-backs will be held as needed on Wednesday, Aug. 21 at 6:30 p.m. Auditioning student should dress appropriately to move.

Winthrop Dance Theatre Fall Concert

     Wednesday and Thursday, Aug. 21 & 22 at 6:30 p.m. in Studio 235, Johnson Hall 

     Performance Dates: November 7-10, 2019

     Sign up for audition times for each piece on dance board outside of 235 Johnson. Choreographers will post descriptions of their dance pieces as well as weekly rehearsal schedule for each piece and the number of dancers needd. Wear appropriate attire for dancing and bring any and all dance shoes.

The Rockhettes

     Wednesday and Thursday, Aug. 21 & 22 at 6:30 p.m. in Studio 235, Johnson Hall

     Wear appropriate attire for dancing and bring character shoes if you have them.

No Exit (by Jean-Paul Sartre) and Love Song (By John Kolvenbach)

     Thursday, Aug. 22 at 6:30 p.m. in Johnson Hall Lobby

     Performance Dates: September 26-29, 2019/October 30-November 3, 2019

     Sign up for an audition time in Johnson Hall Theatre callboard (by the elevator). Prepare a dramatic monologue 1-2 minutesin length. Cold reading "asides" will be available, though prepared monologues are preferred. Call-backs will be held as needed on Friday, Aug. 23 at 6:30 p.m. Auditioning students should dress appropriately. Attire should be comfortable but professional in appearance.




Leonard Mark Lewis Chosen to Honor the Lives of "The Emanuel Nine" as 2019 SCMTA Commissioned Composer

Leonard Mark Lewis, professor of music at Winthrop University, has been named the 2019 South Carolina Music Teachers Association (SCMTA) Commissioned Composer.

To memorialize and honor the lives lost in the tragic shooting at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, on June 12, 2015, SCMTA commissioned Lewis to write a unique piece entitled “Elegy: In Memoriam of the Emanuel Nine.” SCMTA seeks for this commission to capture the tragedy and sacrifice as well as the hope, healing and resilience demonstrated by the community.

“Memorializing the lives of the Emanuel Nine is a sincere honor,” Lewis said. “I hope to represent their individuality and distinctly beautiful souls through text and music. It is also my aim to capture the essence and rich history of ‘Mother’ Emanuel Church and the community that surrounds it following this most horrific tragedy. I have an earnest task ahead of me.”

The Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) is dedicated to encouraging the creation of new works by American composers and annually assists its affiliated state associations in the generation and performance of new music through the national composer commissioning program. SCMTA, as the MTNA affiliated organization in South Carolina, annually commissions an American composer to write a new work which will premiere at its annual conference. This year, the conference will be held Oct. 31-Nov. 2 at Newberry College.

Lewis is a composer, conductor and pianist specializing in new music. He has received awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (Morton Gould Young Composter Award), B.M.I., Columbia University (Bearns Prize), Voices of Change (Russell Horn Young Composer Award), Frank Tichelli and MACRO.

In addition to his catalog of solo works, compositions by Lewis have been commissioned and performed by an array of ensembles including the North/South Consonance, Truman State Orchestra, AURA (University of Houston), Symposium for New Band Music, University of Texas Composer’s Orchestra, New Music Camerata (East Carolina University), NACUSA, Concordia Trio, Charlotte Civic Symphony, the Charlotte Symphony, Hyperion Ensemble and numerous wind ensembles.

Lewis earned a D.M.A. at the University of Texas-Austin and his master’s and bachelor’s degrees in music at the University of Houston.



Elisa Koehler Named New Winthrop Department of Music Chair
Elisa Koehler

Dr. Elisa Koehler has been selected as the new chair of the Department of Music in Winthrop University's College of Visual and Performing Arts. Koehler, who will begin the role on August 1, will assume the position from Don Rogers, who is retiring after 23 years as a department chair. Rogers has been a member of the music faculty at Winthrop since 1975 and helped elevate the Department of Music to one of the best programs in the Southeast.  Currently, Koehler is a professor of music and director of the Center for Dance, Music, and Theatre at Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition to six years in leadership positions at Goucher, she also served as music director and conductor of the Frederick Symphony Orchestra for 17 years.

"Dr. Koehler brings with her over two decades as both a music educator and arts administrator," said Jeff Bellantoni, dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts. "We look forward to working with Dr. Koehler on continuing our proud history of educating musicians and music teachers, but also developing new and exciting programs at Winthrop."

Koehler earned a doctorate in orchestral conducting from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, a master's degree in trumpet performance from the University of Tennessee, and bachelor's degrees in both music education and trumpet performance from Peabody. In 2009, the University of Tennessee honored her as a Distinguished Alumna and in 2014, she received Goucher College's highest faculty honor, the Caroline Doebler Bruckerl '25 Award, which honors an exemplary faculty member in the areas of teaching, scholarly activity, and service. She is also a board member of the International Trumpet Guild and the author of "Fanfares and Finesse: A Performer's Guide to Trumpet History and Literature" (Indiana University Press).

Winthrop University's College of Visual and Performing Arts is the academic home to over 600 undergraduate students majoring in dance, design, studio arts, music, and theatre, and 40 graduate students in six graduate programs and one post-baccalaureate certificate program. The College currently employs over 50 full-time faculty as well as part-time lecturers, all practicing professionals from the surrounding metropolitan area. Winthrop is one of only 37 universities in the United States and the only public or private institution in South Carolina with all five of its undergraduate and graduate arts programs nationally accredited (NASAD, NAST, NASD, NASM and CIDA). In addition, Winthrop's arts education programs in art, music, theatre, and dance are accredited through the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

New CVPA Faculty Members Announced for 2018-2019 Academic Year

Karen Oremus, associate professor at Zayed University in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, has been selected as the new chair of the Department of Fine Arts in Winthrop University's College of Visual and Performing Arts. She will begin the new role on August 1. Oremus has worked at Zayed University since 2003 and has held numerous administrative roles during her time there, including chair of the Department of Art and Design and assistant dean of the College of Arts and Creative Enterprises. Most recently, she worked as the visual art major coordinator and associate professor of printmaking and visual arts. Prior to her time at Zayed University, Oremus served as an adjunct professor of printmaking at The Tyler School of Art at Temple University. Oremus holds an M.F.A. in printmaking from The Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia and a B.F.A. in printmaking from Concordia University in Montréal, Canada.

Robert Wildman is the new director and faculty member for the arts administration programs at Winthrop University. Prior to coming to Winthrop, Wildman served as program director at LIU Post in the B.F.A. program in arts management and has been an adjunct faculty member for Goucher College's arts administration distance-learning program. He also created the M.F.A. program in performing arts management at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. In addition to faculty positions, he worked for 16 years in non-profit performing arts venues in marketing and public relations, and six years at the University of Connecticut's Department of Dramatic Arts. Wildman holds an M.F.A. in theatre administration from the Yale School of Drama at Yale University and a B.A. in English from Stanford University.

Dr. Marvin McAllister joins the Department of Theatre and Dance as an assistant professor of theatre. Dr. McAllister comes to us from the University of South Carolina and is the author of the books "White People Do Not Know How to Behave at Entertainments Designed for Ladies and Gentlemen of Colour: William Brown's African and American Theatre," and "Whiting Up: Whiteface Minstrels and Stage Europeans in African American Performance." He has worked as a dramaturg for theatrical productions in New York, Chicago, the District of Columbia, and Seattle. Dr. McAllister holds a Ph.D. in theatre and drama from Northwestern University as well as a bachelor's degree in history with theatre studies from Yale University.

Claudia O'Steen
joins us as an assistant professor of fine arts (interdisciplinary studio art) in the Department of Fine Arts. Often collaborating with various art forms in her work, O'Steen's work is inspired by the history of science, technology, and observation, and has been exhibited nationally and internationally. A faculty member in the fine art department at the University of West Florida since 2016, O'Steen has an M.F.A. in digital + media from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and a B.F.A. in design and film from Watkins College of Art.

Dr. Adam Snow
has been named assistant professor of music after 13 years as part of the Department of Music at Winthrop as an adjunct professor and instructor of music. Throughout his career, Dr. Snow has performed with many legendary musicians and works closely with the Jazz Arts Initiative in Charlotte. Dr. Snow holds a Ph.D. in musical arts from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a master's degree in music and a bachelor's degree in music education from Winthrop University.

Jesse Weser
joins the Department of Design as assistant professor of design after six years as an adjunct instructor and senior instructor. She also served as a faculty member at Domus Academy in Milan, Italy, and holds many years of experience as a creative director and designer for Moonlight Creative Group in Charlotte, N.C. Weser holds a master's degree in design from Domus Academy and a B.F.A in visual communication from Winthrop University.

Julianna Hane is an instructor of dance in the Department of Theatre and Dance in Winthrop University's College of Visual and Performing Arts. A native of South Carolina, Hane holds an M.F.A. in modern dance from the University of Utah and a B.A. in dance performance from Winthrop University. She has previously taught at Winthrop University, Columbia College, The University of Utah, and the College of Charleston. Hane is a graduate of the Professional Training Program at New England Center of Circus Arts (NECCA). In 2008, she founded Revolve Aerial Dance as a studio and performing company, and her recent performance credits include Flight Collaborative in Boulder, Colorado, and the Atlanta Aerial Arts Festival. Hane is the author of the Aerial Teacher's Handbook and co-author of several aerial dance manuals as well as The Aerial Teacher's Creative Handbook.


For more information on ArtsWinthrop, please contact Whitney Hough, director of communications and community engagement, at 803/323-2399 or If you need to speak to the Winthrop Box Office concerning tickets about theatre and dance productions, please call 803/323-4014.

Last Updated: 7/10/19