Bud Beyer

Bud Beyer, Professor Emeritus in Theatre, Northwestern University, joined the faculty in 1972 and served as head of the Acting Program until 1989, when he was chosen to chair the Department of Theatre. He stepped down as chair in 2002, and retired from Northwestern in 2008.  Professor Beyer was also Founder and Director of the Northwestern University Mime Company established in 1972, which toured extensively throughout the United States and Europe. A member of SAG, AEA, and AFTRA, Bud has professional credits as an actor, director, and theatre manager, and has taught intensive scene study for professional actors in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. He has conducted workshops in mime and acting for colleges, universities and festivals across the United States and published, with Charlotte Lee, Speaking of Theatre, Scott Foresman and Company (1974). He was also featured in The New Generation of Acting Teachers written by Eva Meckler (1988) and Acting Teachers of America, a vital tradition by Ronald Rand and Luigi Scorcia (2007).

During the past thirty years, Bud has presented lectures and workshops on gesture and movement for orchestral and band conductors throughout the country. He gave yearly residencies at the University of Minnesota, Northwestern University and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens-Point.  In recent years, Bud has been working with professional musicians, and has given workshops for entire orchestras, singers, instrumentalists and conductors in Norway. He is working with the Grieg Academy in Bergen, and with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra in Oslo, exploring new approaches to the training of musicians and the performance of music. A Norwegian research and performance project, EUIPAF, The Explosive, Unforeseeable Instant of Musical Performance: Applications and Foundations, will examine artistic projects in collaboration with Bud and his concepts and process for emotional connection within the framework of musical interpretation and performance.  A thirty-minute documentary of his work, Smile, you have an audience, is available on Norwegian Educational Television.

In 2013, Bud wrote Sirkelen Sluttes: Bevisstgjøring og Endring i Formidling av Musikk, published in Norwegian through Universitetsforlaget in Oslo.  In January of 2014, he directed a project with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra.  The final performance was an acclaimed production of Verklärte Nacht Opus 4 (1899) by Schoenberg. This work was followed with a new production with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra of Richard Strauss' Metamorphosen für 23 Solostreicher (1944-45) in the Spring of 2015.

In 2014, GIA Publications, Inc in Chicago, Illinois published Bud's book, Completing the Circle: Considerations for Change in the Performance of Music.

Workshops

THE CONDUCTED MOMENT: Lessons for the Conductor from Mime and the Theatre - Music Education

This symposium explores the physical act of communication for conductors. Participants will actively engage in the concepts of projection and presence, resistance in gesture, and the troubling relationship between the right and left hands. Focusing on the interplay between physical response and musical response, the seminar explores the difficult and often humorous confusion between what we think we are saying and how our attempts are perceived.

THE BODY SPEAKS: Lessons for the Musician from Mime and the Theatre - Music Education

This symposium investigates the physical act of communication for musicians. Participants will actively explore the concepts of projection and presence, resistance in movement, and the crucial influence of the torso. Focusing on the interplay between physical response and musical response, the seminar explores the difficult and often humorous confusion between what we think we are saying and how our attempts are perceived.

THE GATEWAY TO EMOTIONAL CONNECTION - Music Education

This workshop includes a series of lessons and explorations for ensembles, using the elements of telling stories, sensory experiences and the physical engagement of group exercises. The study is designed to assist groups in establishing an emotional connection to each other within the confines of their performance work.

JUST TWO INCHES MORE: A workshop in addressing performance anxiety and stage fright - Music Education

Utilizing gestural extension, sensory-based physicality and response, spatial exploration, and sculpture and spheres, participants are given the tools to manage anxiety and stage fright, allowing them to realize a more profound connection with their audience members.

COMPLETING THE CIRCLE - Music Education

This weeklong seminar is for musicians to explore emotional reconnection to themselves, to their work, to each other and to their audiences. Musicians spend the first half of each day in exercises from the adjacent disciplines of Theater, Dance, and Mime. The second half of each day is given to music performances, utilizing the concepts of each morning's work. The week culminates in a public performance of memorized selections of music. This seminar could be constructed for teachers only, giving them the tools needed to teach the above concepts in their own classrooms. Either seminar, musicians or educators, could be designed for five whole days, or ten half-days.