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Learn about professor Donna Hare

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December 2012


Adjunct faculty member Donna Hare teaches Beginning Acting for Non-Majors and Principles of Public Speaking. Her husband is an alumnus of the St. Ambrose University Theatre Department and always spoke highly of its faculty. When she and her husband returned to the Quad Cities, Hare was delighted to find out that there was a need for additional faculty to cover the teaching load here at St. Ambrose. Her favorite part of teaching here: "I really enjoy getting to see the students' progress throughout their years. Sometimes I will teach students as freshmen in my speech class, and then see them again as juniors and seniors in acting. I love to see how they have blossomed and are no longer the timid freshmen I knew!"

Hare experienced a bit of culture shock when she and her husband decided to make the move to the Quad Cities. She was born in Memphis, Tenn., and spent most of her life in Birmingham, Ala.
She, then, attended University of Montevallo in Alabama where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Performance and Directing. After completion of her undergraduate, she found that her professional opportunities were limited due to her youthful appearance. This led her to search for a graduate school where she could get more training to set herself apart at auditions. She chose Western Illinois University where she completed her Masters of Fine Arts in Acting. While she was there, she had her first opportunity to teach an Intro to Theatre class.

"I realized that it was more gratifying seeing the light bulb click on in students, than to hear the applause of an audience," she said.

Her first professional teaching job was at Black Hawk College where she taught several classes and directed. Shortly thereafter, she began teaching at St. Ambrose University and Augustana College.

When asked about her favorite job, Hare said, "My favorite role was playing Lala Levy in The Last Night of Ballyhoo. My favorite summer job was teaching part time at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp (Michigan) and performing professionally at the Howmet Theatre in the evenings. But I guess my favorite job is being a mother to my 2-year-old! What a blast!"

Hare's advice for students is to "make the most of your education. Own it. If you don't feel like you are being challenged, ask for more. If you want an opportunity, make it happen. You'd be surprised how many doors open for students that are truly interested in bettering themselves."

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