Performing Arts Department Launches Professional Insight Series

Danielle Lambert

The Performing Arts Department recently announced its newest initiative for the fall titled the Professional Insight Series. Once a month, the department will host a virtual discussion and Q&A session with a renowned and accomplished artist. This ongoing series is open to the entire BWL community. The first event held in September featured Tony-nominated choreographer, David Neumann, and was attended by students, faculty and BWL alumni from around the world via Zoom. Members of the administration commented on Mr. Neumann's wide-ranging creative influences and were delighted to see so many recent BWL graduates joining the virtual event from their college dorms. The alumni asked insightful questions that demonstrated their ongoing passion for theater, nurtured while at BWL. 

David Neumann is the Tony-nominated choreographer of Hadestown. He has also choreographed for the films I Am Legend (Will Smith) and Marriage Story (Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver). Choreography: An Octoroon and Futurity (Soho Rep), Underground Railroad Game (Ars Nova), Hagoromo (Wendy Whelan, Jock Soto) and Home (BAM), The Antipodes (Signature Theater). Collaborator and performer: Laurie Anderson, Big Dance Theater, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Doug Elkins. Director: The Object Lesson (NYTW, BAM). Artistic director, Advanced Beginner Group (PS 122, NY Live Arts, The Kitchen, Symphony Space, Abrons Art Center, The Chocolate Factory, The Whitney, Walker Art Center, MASS MoCA, among others). David is the recipient of three Bessie Awards for dance/performance, nominee for two Lucille Lortel and one Helen Hayes Award for choreography.


Emily Freilicher, Chair of the Performing Arts Department, explained how the idea for the series came about: "We wanted to find ways to keep theater exciting, fresh, and relevant in our community and teach our students about the vast opportunities available within the Performing Arts world—from dance, to puppetry, to lighting and sound design. We’ve always wanted to bring in more theater professionals to work with our students and this digital environment was the perfect way to bring everyone together. Our first discussion with David Neumann was inspirational and eye-opening. We heard from many students after the event about how they were energized by his words and how he inspired them to create art." 

The next event on Tuesday, October 20 will feature opera singer Terrence Chin-Loy who recently made his Metropolitan Opera debut in Porgy & Bess. To learn more about that event and future events, click here.