Faculty Spotlight

Highlights, Updates and News about our Faculty.

Denise J. Hart Promoted to Full Professor

Denise Hart

Professor Denise J. Hart has served the academic community at Howard University for 20+ years. In the Department of Theatre Arts she serves as the area coordinator of Playwriting advising Playwriting/TV&Film students. Named the 2018 Outstanding Associate Professor in the Division of Fine Arts, in addition to teaching at Howard University, Hart was honored to be named the 2019 Visiting Professor at St. Mary's College in the Department of Theatre, Film and Media Studies and has also taught at American University and Duke Ellington School of the Arts. As well, she was honored to be named the 2020 featured playwright for the Penn State African American Read in. 

 

Hart's research/creative expertise as a playwright is grounded in the African American experience and explores the intersection of race, class and identity and its impact on memory, personal integrity and family. She strives to create relatable, flawed and complex characters within multi-layered stories. She also focuses on researching and directing the work of black playwrights such as the plays of August Wilson and Lydia Diamond, among others. Additional focus is on the history of archival collections that focus on the evolution of black theatre at Howard University with a focus on the Howard Players and the College Dramatic Club. Her scholarship is driven by a commitment to document and preserve under researched narratives in the history of black theatre, particularly black playwrights.

 

Hart is a commissioned playwright with Plowshares Theatre Company  and the recipient of several national playwriting honors and awards. Her award winning plays include: Nothing to Lose (finalist 2018 Bay Area Playwrights, former finalist in the Black and Latino Playwrights Conference) Sistah Girl, Masquerade Parade, Ring the Bell, My Soul is a Witness (winner of ECTC playwriting competition), The Last Day, In the Realm of Shadows, Chasing Forever, Peace Declared, A Real Black Comedy and This Joy, (a former finalist in both The Lark and the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights competition). Hart is also a screenwriter and is a former recipient of the AJJAP award for screenwriting.

 

She is a sought after production and play development dramaturge consultant. Her production dramaturge credits include: Jitney (recipient of the 2019 Memphis Ostrander Award for Best Production), Milk Like Sugar, Sweet Charity, Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Day of Absence (ACTFestival Outstanding Acting Ensemble Award), Zooman and the Sign, Malcom. Martin & Medgar, Breath Boom and both Quick Stop at the Florist and Secret Mist of the Blue for the DC Queer Festival. She has provided expertise as a guest expert on Fox 5 News, served as play development dramatruge for playwrights Nikkole Salter, A. Peter Bailey, Barbara Asare-Bediako and Kofi Kwahule. Others that have benefited from her expertise include: Studio Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre, Hatiloo Theatre, Arena Stage, Mosaic Theatre, Ira Aldridge Theatre/Howard University and Blackademics TV.

 

For the past six years, exclusively for Lone Star Emmy nominated Blackademics TV, nationally televised via PBS and reaching over 3 million households, Hart has served as a scholarly writing and media coach. Each year, during pre-production for the live taping, she provides dramaturgy/scholarly writing support and media coaching for nationally and internationally recognized scholars, artists and activists.

 

Hart is a founding charter member of the nationally recognized August Wilson Society. She recently served as the 2019 co-chair of the August Wilson Ground lecture series which featured Mr. Wilson's wife, Constanz Romero along with Dr. Psyche Williams-Forson speaking on—Cornbread, Biscuits, and Coca-Cola: Foods and Food Practices in August Wilson’s American Century Cycle Plays. In addition, Hart is the former Managing Editor of the internationally recognized peer reviewed journal, Continuum: The Journal of African Diaspora Drama, Theatre and Performance and editorial board member of the journal, Evoke: A Historical, Theoretical, and Cultural Analysis of Africana Dance and Theatre. Hart is also a member of the Dramatist Guild, Literary Managers and Dramaturges of the Americas (LMDA), Screen Actors Guild (SAG), Black Theatre Network (BTN) and the Association of Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE).

 

Lastly, one of Hart's academic and professional highlights has been serving as committee chair for the 2020 Amazon Studios/Howard Entertainment partnership initiative. During spring 2020, she joined a faculty and student cohort to live and work in Los Angeles during which she taught Script Development/TV Production.

 

For more information about Professor Denise J. Hart click here.  

Royce Zackery Promoted to Associate Professor with Tenure

Royce Zackery pic

Royce Zackery received a Master of Arts from N.Y.U. Steinhardt/American Ballet Theatre Department of Music and Performing Arts Professions and is certified in the ABT National Teaching Curriculum with a concentrated degree in Ballet Pedagogy. He received a B.F.A. from Southern Methodist University is a proud member of the International Association of Blacks In Dance, ABT’s Project Plié on faculty both at the The Washington Ballet and THEARC Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus. Interdisciplinary driven, Professor Zackery's research includes brain cognition and bilateralization in human response for injury prevention, efficiency within athletic performance and childhood education (STEAM).

 

Professor Zackery has more than 20 years of experience as a professional dancer and teacher artist. Naming a few, he has performed in Broadway shows including My One and Only, Oklahoma! and Anything Goes –along with classical ballet and contemporary companies including Ajkun Ballet Theatre, Rioult Dance, Rebecca Kelly Ballet, Thomas/Ortiz Dance, and Ballethnic Dance Company.

 

Professor Zackery’s choreography, teaching, coaching and directing experience crosses all levels of dance from beginner to professional. He has served as faculty for three of the most prestigious training facilities and programs in NYC know around the world including Broadway Dance Center, The Alvin Ailey Extension Program, and The School at Steps on Broadway. He has also taught dance in public schools, community outreach centers, academies, universities, professional companies, and festivals across the U.S. and abroad. Teaching idioms include Classical/Contemporary Ballet, Contemporary Movement, Jazz, Tap, and Partnering (Classical/ Contemporary).

 

Currently Professor Zackery is a Tenured Associate Professor and Head Coordinator of Dance Arts for Howard University's Department of Theatre Arts and Dance Program. Mr. Zackery a grant recipient in collaboration with the Israel Embassy, The Israeli Institute: Schusterman Program and Howard University Dance Arts. He has received choreographic notoriety for works commissioned by the Public Affairs Office of the U.S. &  Rwandan Embassy's. Other commissions include the Kennedy Center, White Nights Festival, Dixon Place, Ajkun Ballet Theatre, Hofstra University, Irondale Theatre, Staten Island Ballet, Loteria Performing Arts and Nomad Contemporary Ballet. He has also created works for international festivals, galas, governmental functions with choreographic premieres in Germany, Russia, New York City, Africa, Mexico City Mexico, California, Ohio, Texas, Colorado, Oklahoma, and Atlanta, Georgia.

 

Professor Zackery is a strong believer and advocate for giving back to the community and youth of the world through teaching. He travels to Africa collaborating with a New York based international NGO (MindLeaps) that creates educational programs for vulnerable children in post-conflict and developing countries. and train native teaching artists of Kigali, Rwanda. Working with 11 different artists from 5 different countries, he recently premiered a new choreographic work (BABEL) at the Kigali Genocide Memorial Amphitheatre for the Annual Ubunmutu Arts Festival. Here is the resting place for 300,000 victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi. The choreographic creation is collaboratively accompanied by renowned classical pianist, composer, Howard University Professor, and Global Music Award Winner Dr. Karen Walwyn's masterpiece Mother Emanuel. The works inspiration derives from the Charleston South Carolina Church massacre of 2015. While in Kigali, Professor Zackery also trains native teaching artists of Kigali, Rwanda and mentors orphans and homeless children to help them get into boarding schools, trade schools, and IT programs.  Professor Zackery’s teaching philosophy is committed to enriching students' cognitive development. He believes that unconditional caring, patience and mentorship of young people will ensure leaders of tomorrow.

 

For more information about Associate Professor Royce Zackery click here.

Jocelyn Isaac Cox Receives Grant for Children's Book  

Jocelyn Isaac pic

Jocelyn Isaac Cox (Lecturer of Dance) is a recipient of the Prince George's Arts and Humanities Council 2020 Artist Fellowship Grant for Literary Arts/Dance. She received the award for her children's book: "Jocelyn Learns to Dance", which introduces young readers to Ballet, Modern, Jazz, Tap, and Hip Hop through descriptive words and pictures. The book also encourages children to explore new activities.

 

For more information about Jocelyn Isaac click here

For more information about "Jocelyn Learns to Dance" click here. 

 

 

Tiffany Quinn receives Helen Hayes Award

Tiffany Quinn Headshot

Tiffany Quinn recently received a Helen Hayes award for Outstanding Choreography in a Play (Helen) for Blood at the Root with Theatre Alliance.  

 

Quinn is an alum of Department of Theatre Arts and currently serves on the Dance Arts faculty.  Her choreography credits include: Zomo the Rabbit: A Hip Hop Creation Myth (Imagination Stage), The Diary of Anne Frank (National Players Tour), Earthrise (The Kennedy Center), Les Deux Noirs (Mosaic Theatre), The Frederick Douglas Project (Solas Nua), In The Heights (Montgomery Community College), The Mail Order Bride (University of Maryland Baltimore County) Trojan WomenThe Children’s Hour, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Howard University). She has also assisted Camille A. Brown in restaging her choreography for the Shakespeare Theater Company’s production of A Winter’s Tale.  She thanks the HU community, her DOTA colleagues, and students for their endless encouragement, love, and support.

 

Contact Information: tiffany.quinn5678@gmail.com