Faculty Leaders

Director

Michael Rasbury, Drama

Michael Rasbury is an Associate Professor in Sound Design within the Department of Drama. Before that, he served on the faculty of the School of the Performing Arts at Louisiana Tech University. His original musical script titled Max Understood premiered in San Francisco at Fort Mason Center in April 2015. In 2013, he created an original sound design for Terrance McNally’s new work, And Away We Go, produced by the Pearl Theatre in New York City. In 2011, he was nominated for a Helen Hayes award for his Henry VIII design for the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. In 2009, Max Understood was produced Off-Broadway for the New York Musical Theatre Festival and in 2008 was selected for development in a staged reading workshop by the Eugene O’Neill National Music Theatre Conference. Michael created and maintains his EarthRecordings.org website showcasing original environmental recordings. He has served as sound designer for Off-Broadway’s Transport Group, having provided designs for several productions including The PatsyBury the DeadDark at the Top of the StairsHello Again (Drama Desk nominee,) and Marcy in the Galaxy. He has composed music and sound for Lake Tahoe Shakespeare, Colorado Shakespeare, and Illinois Shakespeare Festivals. He has served as sound designer for The Lost Colony Outdoor Drama since 2006. In 2001, Michael toured Europe and the United States with the production of An Alphabet, a John Cage piece produced by the John Cage Trust. Also in 2001, he wrote an orchestral score for Louisiana Tech University’s theatrical adaptation of The Leafmen and the Brave Good Bugs, written by award winning children’s author/illustrator, William Joyce. Michael composed music/sound for the Humana Festival for New American Playwrights at Actors Theatre of Louisville and for The Public in New York City. He has performed as a keyboardist/vocalist at two New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festivals with The Lightnin’ Bugs, a Louisiana band. In 2003, he was recognized as the Louisiana State Funded Theatre Artist by receiving the Artist Fellowship Grant in Theatre presented by the Louisiana Division of the Arts. For more information, visit this link.

michaelrasbury.org
earthrecordings.org
people.virginia.edu/~mr2xk
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Faculty Advisory Committee

David Dalton, Drama

Dave Dalton is a director and adaptor of classic texts with an emphasis on comedy. Dave teaches direting at UVA. Recent directing credits include The Ring Cycle (Parts 1-4) with Performance Lab 115 at the Bushwick Starr and Incubator Arts, Laika Dog in Space with the New York Neo-Futurists at Incubator Arts, The Threepenny Opera at Connecticut Repertory Theatre, H.M.S. Pinafore at the Vortex Theater (Drama Desk nominee for Outstanding Revival of a Musical), the New York premiere of Nickel and Dimed with 3 Graces Theater Company, Dog in the Manger at the Vortex Theater, and many productions at university performing arts programs, including Brooklyn College, Long Island University, Atlantic Theatre Company Acting School, and Johns Hopkins University. He wrote The Ring Cycle (Parts 1-4) with Jeremy Beck based on the libretto by Richard Wagner. He also adapted Gilbert and Sullivan's H.M.S. Pinafore with music director Edward Barnes using text from W. S. Gilbert's children's book The Pinafore Picture Book. Dave has a particular interest in the plays of the Spanish Golden Age. With Jeremy Beck, he adapted Dog in the Manger by Lope de Vega, and he received the American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR) Targeted Research Areas Grant to develop a bi-lingual adaptation and production of Don Gil de las calzas verdes by Tirso de Molina with Dr. Raul Galoppe.

Kim Mata, Dance

Kim Brooks Mata is the Head and Artistic Director of Dance within the University of Virginia’s Department of Drama. After having received her BA degree in Art History with a minor in Dance from the University of Kentucky, she studied at the Rotterdam Dance Academy (now Codarts) in the Netherlands. Upon her return from Europe, she received her MFA in Modern Dance from the University of Utah. Kim is a Registered Somatic Movement Educator (RSME), a certified Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analyst (CLMA), and is currently on faculty with the Integrated Movement Studies program. Kim has performed professionally with multiple companies throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and her choreography has been performed in Kentucky, Utah, California, Illinois, North Carolina, Maryland and Virginia. She has taught in various capacities at the University of Utah, California State University East Bay, the University of San Francisco, and the University of Chicago. At UVa, Kim teaches technique, improvisation, composition, the Art of Dance, Dance for the Camera, and Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analysis. Her teaching, choreography and performance coaching in the semesterly concerts all rely heavily on her background in somatics. Common themes found in her teaching and creative work focus on the exploration of identity, relationship, the mediated body, and community. During her time at UVa Kim has received various grants and awards:  4VA Arts Project grant (2012), Jefferson Trust award with engineering colleague Amy LaViers (2014-15), Mead Faculty Fellow (2014-15) and the first annual Arts Endowment grant with Mona Kasra and Kristina Warren (2015-16). In addition to these, Kim has received multiple grants from the UVa Arts Council in support of the Dance Minor program enabling dance guest-artist residencies and student participation in regional conferences and festivals for dance.

Akemi Ohira, Studio Art

Akemi Ohira is an artist who specializes in intaglio, lithography and relief printmaking processes, as well as egg tempera paintings.  She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Printmaking and Drawing concentrations with the Charles Goodwin Sands Memorial Medal from Cornell University, and a Master of Fine Arts from Carnegie Mellon University.  She is a recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including Southeastern College Arts Conference (SECAC) Visual Arts Grant and Professional Fellowship from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.  Her work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia.  She teaches Printmaking and Drawing at the University of Virginia where she is an Associate Professor of Art.

Joel Rubin, Music

Joel Rubin is Associate Professor of Music and director of Music Performance at the University of Virginia. He attended the California Institute of the Arts and received a BFA in clarinet performance from the State University of New York at Purchase (1978). His principal teachers were Richard Stoltzman and Kalmen Opperman. Rubin holds a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from City University of London (2001). Rubin has concertized throughout Europe, North America and Asia.

An internationally acclaimed performer of klezmer music, Rubin has been the founder and clarinetist of some of the most internationally respected ensembles, including the Joel Rubin Ensemble and Brave Old World. He also performs with the R2G Klezmer Trio, and collaborates regularly with renowned artists such as the trio Veretski Pass, composer and jazz pianist Uri Caine, and accordionist and pianist Alan Bern.

A respected ethnomusicologist, Rubin is co-author of the books "Klezmer-Musik" (Bärenreiter/dtv, 1999) and "Jüdische Musiktraditionen" (Jewish Musical Traditions; Gustav Bosse-Verlag, 2001). He wrote the notes to the CD anthology, Chekhov’s Band: Eastern European Klezmer Music from the EMI Archives 1908-1913 (Renair Records, 2015). Rubin’s work on Jewish music in contemporary Germany has appeared in Ethnomusicology Forum (2015) and the collection Dislocated Memories: Jews, Music, and Postwar German Culture (Oxford University Press, 2014). He has articles forthcoming in the Cambridge Companion to Jewish Music and the Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World. Prior to UVa, he taught at Cornell University, Syracuse University, Ithaca College and Humboldt Universität Berlin.