Atelier Courses


The Old Man and The Pool: Crafting a Long-form Monologue

ATL 495 / THR 495 · Spring 2022

C01 - Mike Birbiglia + Seth Barrish · Tuesdays, 1:30-4:20 PM

Instructors: Seth Barrish

The comedian and storyteller Mike Birbiglia and the director Seth Barrish have collaborated on five shows Off and On Broadway, including "Sleepwalk With Me" and "The New One". Their award-winning work has now been seen around the world. In this unique course, Mike and Seth will share the finer points of their groundbreaking approach to creating compelling long-form monologues. Each student in the class will develop a 6-minute monologue which they will share in an end of the semester presentation.

How to Write a Song

ATL 496 / CWR 496 · Spring 2022

C01 · Tuesdays, 1:30-4:20 PM

Instructors: Bridget Kearney · Paul Muldoon

Taught by Bridget Kearney (Lake Street Dive) and Paul Muldoon (Rogue Oliphant) with class visits from guest singer/songwriters and music critics, this course is an introduction to the art of writing words for music, an art at the core of our literary tradition from the Beowulf poet through Lord Byron and Bessie Smith to Bob Dylan and the Notorious B.I.G. Composers, writers and performers will have the opportunity to work in small songwriting teams to respond to such emotionally charged themes as Gratitude, Loss, Protest, Desire, Joyousness, Remorse, and Defiance.

Athens, Georgia

ATL 497 / MTD 497 · Spring 2022

C01 - Paul Muldoon + Stew · Wednesdays, 1:30-4:20 PM

Instructors: Paul Muldoon

Ever thought of writing a rock musical? Or, having written one, staging it? If you're a writer, composer, musician, singer or director you might consider joining the Tony Award winning composer Stew (Passing Strange) and book and lyrics writer Paul Muldoon as they develop their new piece commissioned by the Public Theater in New York. Athens, Georgia is based on the Frogs of Aristophanes but set squarely in the America of the 2020s. This up-to-date version combines slapstick and social justice and features appearances by the rock god Dionysus, the guitar hero Hercules, Chuck Berry, Little Richard and, of course, the Real Housewives of Hades.

Fables of Our Time

ATL 498 / THR 498 · Spring 2022

C01 · Thursdays, 1:30-4:20 PM

Instructors: Dan Rothenberg · Josephine Decker

Dan Rothenberg and Josephine Decker team up to explore original fables for children, devised for theater and film. We will look at multiple versions of folktales familiar to American children such as Little Red Riding Hood; international folklore; 20th century masters such as Hiyao Miyazaki and Maurice Sendak; and contemporary storytellers such as Kelly Link and Sylvia V. Linsteadt. The class invites musicians, dancers, writers, and performers to "devise" short original creations inspired by the beating heart of fables but updated for our contemporary world of urban migration, technological change, and climate peril.

The Store as Art

ATL 499 / VIS 499 · Spring 2022

C01 · Thursdays, 1:30-4:20 PM

Instructors: Joe Scanlan

Before the invention of the artist as a solitary genius, all artists, as artisans, had shops in which they had direct contact with their customers. This arrangement held until the Modern era, when the twin ethos of specialization and purity separated artists from the corrupting influence of commerce. This class will begin with critical discussion of the many artists who have reimagined the role of art (and its relationship to commerce) by opening stores, analyzing how the inherent critique and conviviality of the gesture has inspired new art forms. Students will then conceive, make, and launch their very own “Store as Art” in Princeton.