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Limited space has not hampered the Pacific University Theatre Department from giving every production they put on their full and complete attention and effort. “Our higher commitment is not to complain about storage space,” Theatre Professor Ellen Margolis said. “But to be the theater for this community.” Despite moving props and sets
three times in the past five years to and from different locations, which Margolis compared to moving a house and currently storing most of their sets and props in a church across the street from the Forest Grove campus, the Theatre Department is still able to put on well received productions. Margolis credits this to the hard work of the students and staff of the department. “Our Technical Director Tal Sanders does a great job of making use of the storage we have, as does Melissa Heller on the costume side of things,” Margolis said. “We have really great people making it all work.” However, storage issues are beginning to hinder the department’s progress and their wishes to hold more productions each year. “Our shop isn’t really big enough to build sets that will fill our stage, so we have to build on stage a lot, which means we can’t build and rehearse for one show while another is performing,” Margolis said.
“We need more time between shows than we would if we had a full size scene shop.” The other main reason Margolis wishes the Theatre Department had bigger facilities is recruitment purposes. “Students who come in don’t necessarily know the caliber of the faculty and guest artists here,” Margolis said. “Their first impression is of a somewhat obsolete and small set of spaces and facilities. But once students get into classrooms with my colleagues and see what great dancers and designers and directors we have, it’s a different experience.”