Dordt College News

Producing is passion of Lagestee

May 1, 2008


Details can make or break a show.

That’s why Timothy (T.J.) Lagestee likes to work on both sides of the spotlight, both performing and producing theater productions during his four years as a student at Dordt College.

Lagestee will graduate May 9 with a degree in theatre arts, and an emphasis in theatre management. The theatre management emphasis combines a business administration minor with the general theater major to prepare graduates for all aspects of producing a show.

T.J. has gotten plenty of practice: in April he worked with senior student directors to produce all three of their projects. As producer, he organized the production crew, scene shop personnel, sound and light designers, and graphic artists to design posters and programs for each show. As producer, it was also his task to oversee the budgets for the productions.

“It’s a lot of detail work that can definitely make or break a show,” concedes Lagestee. But he likes the business aspect of theater, and thinks the blend of theater and business courses increases job opportunities.

During his time at Dordt, Lagestee was on the cast for several productions (with a trio of old man roles which he still gets kidded about), but he said the highlight of his Dordt Theatre career was producing Little Women. “There was a lot of planning and learning involved in that,” recalls T.J. He’s appreciated the real world experience, ranging from securing performance rights, to fundraising, to creating promotional materials.

He plans to utilize both his business and his theater background after graduation, when he’ll be returning to Lansing, IL. The son of Tim and Sue Lagestee, he will be working in the family business, an independently owned and operated grocery store started by his great-grandpa in the 1930s, Walt’s Food Center. The Chicago area also offers lots of opportunities for theater involvement, which he hopes he’ll be able to plug into on a part-time basis.

The theatre arts department at Dordt College offers a general major, as well as emphases in acting/directing; design and scenic art; drama ministry; dramaturgy; technical theatre; theatre management; and a general minor.

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