The University of Kansas An Official Employee Publication From the Office of University Relations


Cover story    

April 9, 2004
Vol. 28, No. 14

Prof’s work is play
KU to fine-tune image across state
KU programs rank among nation’s best
KU earns ‘Best Value’ designation
Memorial Drive to add Korean War monument
Women’s basketball hires coach
A capitol education
KU set to begin construction on Dennis E. Rieger Scholarship Hall
Pharmacy hacking hotline open

KU graduate wins Pulitzer Prize for reporting
Lied Center celebrates two anniversaries with art, event
CSA to be screened at KC film festival

KU musicians perform in Guatemala
Promotions and tenure announced
Board of Regents announces sabbaticals
KU Archives contributes to Chamberlain documentary
Annual book contest schedules program
Fun philathropy
Ragin’ Cajun

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Prof’s work is play

Professor Paul Lim, right, directs actors Phillip Schroeder and Jan Chapman during rehearsals for “Miss Julie,” which is being presented by KU’s English Alternative Theatre. EAT stages productions to enhance the experience of KU’s student playwrights. R. Steve Dick/University Relations

EAT Performance
“Miss Julie”
8 p.m. April 9, 10
2:30 p.m. April 10,11

Lawrence Arts Center
Call 843-2787 for ticket information



English professor uses theatre to enhance class

Paul Lim is convinced plays should be seen and not just heard.

Lim, a professor of playwriting at KU since 1989, never cared for teaching playwriting classes in which plays were read but never performed. His desire to allow students the experience of seeing works performed led to the creation of KU’s English Alternative Theatre, a production company based not in fine arts but in the Department of English.

“It became apparent immediately that to effectively teach playwriting we’d have to produce student plays as well,” Lim said. “That was the birth of EAT in 1989.”

Since then, EAT has produced countless student-written plays, including 17 that have been featured regionally as part of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF). Three of those plays—“Pterodactyls,” written by Scott Ferree in 1999; “Bunnies,” written by Michael O’Brien in 2001; and “Attack of the Asians,” written by Tim Macy in 2002—were performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Another, “Whiteout,” written by Alan Newton in 2001, won the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award.

In addition to student plays, EAT also has presented productions of classics including Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie,” Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and Lorraine Hansberry’s “A Raisin in the Sun.”

The productions are teaching tools for English department courses in dramatic literature, but they also have evolved into community-supported events.

“Videos of most of these plays are readily available, but it’s a treat to see these pieces that were meant to be performed live,” Lim said.

In 2002, EAT formed a partnership with the Lawrence Arts Center for a permanent performance venue. EAT performers are mostly KU students but also are drawn from the professional ranks in Lawrence and Kansas City.

Lim’s roles as teacher, director, producer and founder of EAT have earned him recognition on a national level. From 2000 to 2003, Lim served as chair of Region 5 of the KCACTF. Earlier this year, Lim served as a member of the three-person national selection team from the Kennedy Center to adjudicate 71 productions at the eight regional festivals.

Lim traveled more than 11,000 miles in eight weeks to select five productions that will be featured at the Kennedy Center April 12 through 18.

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