25 Photos from the 2017 SMU Meadows Commencement Ceremonies Guaranteed to Make You Smile

Scenes from the spring 2017 Meadows diploma presentation ceremony. (All photos by Kim Leeson)

As faculty and staff at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, one of the happiest days in our year is Commencement. It’s a feeling of unbridled accomplishment and joy, unmatched by events that have unfolded before it. On a balmy day, we sit in the grass of the Boulevard, and hear the inspiring words from our Dean Holland–like “arts and communication inform, uplift and challenge”–and our friends and family cheer as we walk the stage.

“You directed, wrote, choreographed, and practiced, practiced, practiced. You’ve earned this degree,” said Dean Sam Holland at the 2017 graduation ceremonies. In honor, we present our favorite photos–the ones that will make us smile forever–from photographer Kim Leeson below.


2017-09-13T14:35:35+00:00 May 22, 2017|Journalism, Photos We Love|

Light Talk Podcast Attracts Lighting Designers from Around the Globe

Left to right, Light Talk hosts Steve Woods, SMU Meadows; David Jacques, California State University Long Beach; and Stan Kaye, University of Florida.

By Mary Guthrie

You know you’ve got a good thing going when your brand-new podcast gets 7,000 downloads within three months. And the subscribers are tuning in from all over the world. And you get an invitation by the world’s biggest lighting convention, LDI, to live-stream your podcast at their next conference, which will be attended by 13,000 lighting designers from over 80 countries. It’s then when you realize your lighting design colleagues had been waiting for a podcast exactly like Light Talk to come along.

Steve Woods, professor and head of stage design in the M.F.A. Theatre program at SMU Meadows School of the Arts, is one of the show’s three hosts, collectively called “The Lumen […]

2017-08-08T12:40:18+00:00 May 19, 2017|Theatre|

SMU Theatre’s Benard Cummings Talks Challenges, Favorite Shows, and the Path that Led Him to SMU

Photo by Kim Leeson

By Allison Barta

Benard Cummings is an Assistant Professor for the Meadows School of the Arts Division of Theatre. He received his B.F.A in Theatre here at Meadows in 1987. He went on to the Yale School of Drama and later moved to New York City. He starred in the film Raw Nerve in 1999 and the television series New York Undercover in 1996.

He has performed extensively in Off-Broadway productions such as “Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me” at the Actors Theatre of Louisville, and has also tried his hand at playwriting. This fall he will be directing Normalcy by Bennett Windheim, off-broadway, for Theatre East.

What brought you to SMU Meadows?

I was born and raised in East Texas.  I’ve lived in NYC since the early 90s.  I am also a graduate of SMU Theater.  To be honest, my mom wasn’t in good health.  I was […]

2017-06-24T09:36:02+00:00 May 3, 2017|Note, Theatre|