UST Sets the Stage for Theatrical Success
Margaret "Meg" McDonald, a senior at the University of St. Thomas, lives for the theatre. Although she enjoys her time in UST's Jones Theatre, the black box performance stage for the Department of Fine Arts and Drama, the support from her professors is what keeps her focused.
“The professors are committed to helping students in whatever way possible,” McDonald said. “They take time to actually learn their students’ names, and they care about your education. When you go to St. Thomas you aren't just some face in the crowd.”
From the Hillcroft area of Houston and a graduate of St. Agnes Academy, McDonald found St. Thomas to be a good fit for her because she wanted to be in an environment where she could form meaningful relationships with experts in her field. Knowing that drama is a challenging career choice, McDonald tried to soak up all that was offered to her.
McDonald, a drama major, celebrates the smaller numbers of students in her drama classes. It allows for a personal, intensive and conservatory-style program. At UST, the student receives considerable one-on-one training with faculty members in all aspects of the theatre arts. Students can focus on their own particular interest, be it acting, directing, playwriting or design, as they earn their bachelor’s degree.
McDonald has been involved with the plays “Snoopy!!!”, the musical sequel to “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,” and William Shakespeare’s comedy “Twelfth Night.” At UST, she has had the opportunity to act, direct and stage manage. She also assisted the drama program at St. Thomas High School as a stage manager and assistant director for the past three years.
Professor Claire McDonald, of no relation, chairs the Department of Fine Arts and Drama. She works closely with Meg during her study at UST and has high expectations of the driven thespian.
"Meg is the perfect drama student for UST," Professor McDonald said. "Not only is she a talented actress and fine musical comedy singer, but she has a keen interest in directing and in technical theatre as well. Here at UST, she has taken advantage of opportunities to 'do it all.'"
Going into her senior year, Meg is setting her sights on the future. Because of her many areas of study in the drama program, her job possibilities in the theatre world are extensive.
“I would love to have the flexibility to act and direct," Meg said. "My one true aspiration is acting, but I love directing. I would love to stay in Houston, but it all depends on where the jobs are located."
Professor McDonald knows Meg's adaptability will ensure fruitful opportunities on the stage.
"Meg’s abilities and interests convince me that she will discover a wonderful career in the theatre. Prepare to see her name in lights."