School of Performing Arts
107 Henderson Hall (0141)
195 Alumni Mall
Blacksburg, VA 24061
540-231-5947 | email@example.com
Beth Christensen serves as the costume shop manager.
Before coming to Virginia Tech, she worked as cutter and draper at Mill Mountain Theatre and Long Wharf Theatre. She also has worked for the Santa Fe Opera and Hartford Stage.
- Production/Research Areas: Costume Construction, Draping, Costume Crafts
- MA, University of Oregon
- BA, Texas State University
When do you first remember making the decision to go into the arts? What were the circumstances?
I grew up seeing shows, concerts, operas--anything my mom could afford, so it seems natural that I would end up doing theatre. I love that it is a field that supports, even requires, creative exploration and discovery.
What is the most satisfying or rewarding moment of your artistic process?
My favorite part of any production is getting the designs and starting to figure out the puzzles: how to pattern it, how to sew it, what kind of structure it needs, does it need to be built and rigged to come on/off quickly, etc. Likewise, I enjoy figuring out how to teach this process to my students. It's all about creative problem-solving, so the more you know, the better equipped you will be to face every new challenge.
What gives you the most satisfaction as a teacher?
My favorite moment is always the look on students' faces when they finally 'get it' and they realize they know how to do it.
What is the most important quality for any student in the performing arts to cultivate?
If I were to offer any advice to students, it would be to be patient with yourself and with the process. No one starts off being excellent at anything. Dive in, see what happens, and learn from your mistakes. Always encourage your curiosity.
Who has most influenced you? Why?
Teachers who tried to tell me I couldn't do it.
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