Chaya Gordon-Bland, Managing Artistic Director

Chaya Gordon-Bland is a co-founder of the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival and an Associate Professor of Theatre at the University of South Dakota. Chaya holds an MFA in Performance Pedagogy from the University of Pittsburgh. Her professional background includes work as an actor, teaching artist, dramaturg, director, and fight director at theatre companies across the country, including the American Shakespeare Center, New England Shakespeare Festival, Kentucky Shakespeare Festival, American Globe Theatre, Inwood Shakespeare Festival, Hawaii Shakespeare Festival, Black Hills Playhouse, and Native Voices at the Autry. Chaya is a member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA), the Association of Theatre Movement Educators (ATME), the Michael Chekhov Association (MICHA) and the Society of American Fight Directors (SAFD). In 2018 she was  honored with the Belbas-Larson Excellence in Teaching Award, in the tenured category, at the University of South Dakota. 

Scott Mollman, Director of Operations and Productions

Professor Scott Mollman began his academic career at the University of South Dakota as an Assistant Professor of Theatre, was promoted to Associate Professor in 2009 and received tenure in 2010. At USD, he coordinates the technical direction emphasis within the BFA and MFA Design/Tech theatre programs.  Scott teaches Survey of Technical Theatre, Technical Theatre I and II, Metalworking, Woodworking, Motion Scenery, Technical Direction I and II, Drafting, Rigging and Production Management.  His professional experience includes Technical Director and/or Production Manager at the USD Playhouse, Omaha Theater Company for Young People, the Utah Musical Theatre Company in Ogden, Utah, Hilberry Repertory Company in Detroit, MI and the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer, South Dakota. He has served as the Technical Director and/or Production Manager for over 150 productions. Scott was a founding member of the North Dakota Shakespeare Festival in 1991, and the USD Playhouse in 2005.




Laura Vidler, Photographer

Laura Vidler is a scholar of early modern Spanish drama as well as Professor of Spanish and photography student at USD. Her photos have been exhibited in juried student exhibitions in both New York and South Dakota, and have earned recognition at local and national levels. In 2016 she was a finalist in Photographer’s Forum magazine’s College Photography Competition. Laura has a special interest in documenting production and performance processes, and has been shooting for SDSF since 2015.

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