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Theatre

Student Voices

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Mitchell Weindorf ‘13

Hometown

Campbellsport, Wis.

Major(s)

Theatre

Minor(s)

German

Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot is, hands down, the beach. This is a place that I can sit on the rocks and listen to the waves and forget about any worries or cares I have in life for 10 minutes. It is relaxing, and also a great way to make some personal time for myself. It also isn’t a bad place to take a date.”

Mitchell Weindorf ’13, fell in love with acting his junior year of high school while playing the character Fagan in his school’s production of Oliver! He will never forget the sensation of epiphany that he felt while on stage.

“I had the feeling that I was able to help them forget about their troubles and their worries for the evening, and enjoy what I was doing,” Mitchell said. “You don’t get that feeling anywhere else. At that point, I knew I had to delve deeper into this field.”

And so, he did. Mitchell toured and auditioned at multiple schools but found that Carthage had the “it factor” that the rest were missing.

“The moment I arrived on the campus, I felt as if I was in a different world,” Mitchell said. “The location on the lake and the beauty of the nature all around drew me in and gave me the feeling that this place was different.”

Besides its beautiful campus, Carthage’s Theatre Department made him feel welcomed starting at his first audition. He never felt as though he was being rushed through the audition process, and he could tell that the professors that he was meeting with had a genuine interest in his goals and accomplishments.

Now that he is a student, Mitchell has cultivated relationships with these same professors.

“I have built strong, lasting relationships with my professors within the department that I know will last a lifetime,” he said. “These relationships are at a personal level. The professors care about me as a student, but mainly as a person. If one of them notices that I am in a funk or a weird mood, they show genuine concern. I have sought out help from the faculty outside of class and they were more than happy to help me on their own free time.”

Outside of seeking guidance from Carthage faculty, Mitchell has seized many other opportunities that have been presented to him through the theatre department. He has had the chance to work with guest artists – including a monologue workshop with a Chicago casting director, a stage combat clinic with professional choreographers and critiques on scene design from industry set designers.

In January, Mitchell will be part of the Carthage contingent that participates in the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts American College Theatre Festival. Then, in summer 2012, Mitchell with travel to New York City for a study tour to see performances on Broadway, learn about American art and architecture, and experience the culture of New York City.

But to Mitchell, the greatest opportunity has been the diversity of his education. Although he is studying theatre performance, he has taken classes in scenic carpentry, stage management, lighting, directing, design and other areas of theatre production.

“In my short time here, I have learned about and had the opportunity to participate in all aspects of theater,” he said. “These skills make me more valuable in the professional world and have already opened up a variety of doors for me. The opportunities constantly present themselves to students in the department, all they have to do is reach out and take them.”

Career goal

My goal is to become a professional stage actor.

Favorite professor

“My favorite professor is John Maclay. He has been one of my biggest motivators while working through some tough classes and periods in my college career. He has taken time out of his busy schedule to help me with monologues, giving advice for the professional world, and to just talk about life in general.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class was the  J-Term class I took last year. It was a class about Neo-Futurism. I learned a lot about this form of theater and through this class, helped start the Carthage Neil-Futurists, which has been a great place for me to continue to explore this art form.”

Toughest class

“My toughest class is directing. It challenges me daily to think critically and manage a variety of aspects. The work-load isn’t the easiest, but the reward from the work done is definitely worth it. In this class, I have been able to explore a different element of theater that I believe will help me in my acting.”

Campus involvement

“I am currently involved in Delta Upsilon as the Vice President for Member Education. This organization has given me the opportunity to be a leader outside of the theater world and to share what I love with them. I am also a founding member of the Carthage Neil-Futurists, a member of the honorary theatre fraternity, Alpha Psi Omega, and a member of Alpha Lambda Delta.”

Favorite moments at Carthage

“I can’t really pinpoint one favorite moment at Carthage so far. For me, my favorite moments have been all the success that I have had in the theater field. I was nervous pursuing this field because of all the failure stories I heard. Excelling in not only acting, but a variety of other aspects has been uplifting to me. It always puts a smile on my face to think about everything I have accomplished so far and to think about what I could accomplish before I graduate.”

Biggest surprise so far?

“The biggest surprise for me is how involved I have become in the department and everything I have gotten from it. Coming to Carthage, I knew that I would leave with a solid understanding of acting and should be equipped to handle the professional world. I never thought that I would have the skills to successfully pursue other aspects of theater professionally if I desired. It is really neat to know that, if I don’t succeed in one thing, I can pursue something else in the same field that I enjoy, and not have to try to figure out a whole new world.”

Advice for other students considering your major

“This major is what you make of it. If you are willing to put in time, effort and take hold of the opportunities that are offered, you will get your money’s worth and more.”

Writer

Elizabeth Reinhardt
  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2017), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • Scheduled to open in fall 2018, a new residential tower will offer suite-style housing and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about The Tower

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wins, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • As a freshman in the highly selective Honors Program, learn how to gain expertise in anything from music to forest ecology. After that, tackle a contemporary social, economic, or political problem. If you like, you can live on an Honors-only floor of a Carthage residence hall. 

    • In 2016 and 2017, Carthage was named a top producer of Fulbright Scholars by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our athletic and recreation center, student union, computer labs, audiovisual production suite, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 10 years. Our new science center caps it off.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to athletic training, neuroscience to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of our students receive financial aid, a hefty chunk of which is scholarships and grants — including $1.25 million annually from the Presidential Scholarship Competition and numerous Merit Scholarships. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” says biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 30 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Chemistry Club, to Frisbee and Latin Belly Dancing. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • Imagine presenting your original research at an international conference — as an undergraduate. Carthage is dedicated to undergraduate research. Learn more about current opportunities.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …

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