Setting the Stage

Located at the center of our 33-acre campus, this 34,000-square-foot multifunctional facility is designed to be the physical heart of Moses Brown. Sitting at the crossroads of all three divisions, it connects to a fully-renovated Walter Jones Library and will become the new social, artistic, intellectual, and spiritual hub of campus.

The Woodman Center can be quickly reconfigured for performances, meeting for worship, art and cultural exhibitions, and social functions – and with a lobby café, new classrooms, costume and scene shops, and professional-grade sound and lighting, it is poised to transform life at Moses Brown.

Chloe Johnston 2

Chloe Johnston ’95, performer, professor, writer, director

“Like a lot of little girls, I wanted to be an actress. I was in A Christmas Carol at Trinity Rep for years! At MB, I loved theater classes with Barry Marshall. But playwriting class changed things for me – suddenly we weren’t just interpreting a story, but creating the story. After MB, I headed to the University of Chicago – it seemed like a place for weird people, so it might be good for me. Young artists can take chances there. I started a company with my friends, and suddenly we were in American Theatre magazine. We had a good script, and people paid attention.

For me, it goes back to those early days in the Chicago ensemble scene, creating and performing tons of work every week. We didn’t choose between writing, performing, and directing. We did it all. Now that I teach acting, I sneak in a little devised work, encouraging students to make their own text, not to see themselves as ‘just’ actors. That mindset started in Barry’s classes at MB.

I also learned a lot from Tom Andrew. Jamie German made a huge impression on me: her honesty, her rigor, the way she lives her life…such an inspiration. In Jamie’s Seminar on Scientific Thought, we read texts that were so beautiful, they’re still with me now. Moses Brown also taught me that part of being a good teacher is simply listening to your students.”

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