“Last Lecture Series” continues with the ‘Importance of Theatre’

Prof. Jeff Entwistle is the second speaker in the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s “Last Lecture Series” line-up. The lecture will take place Wednesday, October 28 at 7 p.m. in the University Union’s Christie Theatre, at 2420 Nicolet Drive, Green Bay. As part of the “Last Lecture Series,” presenters were asked to convey what lecture they would give, if it was to be their last. Each month, a UW-Green Bay faculty member will give a public presentation on a topic of his or her choice. All monthly lectures take place in the University Union’s Christie Theatre. The lectures are free and open to the public.

Portrait of Jeff Entwistle

Jeff Entwistle

Entwistle has spent 31 years working with the Theatre and Dance programs at UW-Green Bay, and with many productions and performances in the Green Bay region as well. His presentation is entitled, “We All Need Theatre in Our Lives and in Our Future.”

Entwistle says inspiration for his speech will come from three major ideas — the emotional connection of theatre, the fact that in the theatre an audience can observe even the worst of human behavior without fear for their safety, and the probability of a serious decrease in human interaction as society moves ever deeper into the digital age.

“Many people avoid human contact, and facing a future that will probably be filled with a great deal of artificial intelligence and even more digital technology is going to make events that are built around human interaction incredibly important in order to sustain our human existence,” Entwistle says. “These three things rumbling around in my mind prompted me to put together this lecture. I feel very strongly about how important it is for humans to explore their emotional selves and to feel empathy for other humans and to interact with other humans… and one of the most painless and safest places to have that kind of human interaction and emotional experience whether serious or hilarious is in a theatre.”

Entwistle earned a bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Bridgewater State in Massachusetts and his MFA in Theatre Design at Michigan State. He was an assistant professor at Illinois State University and TD/Lighting Designer for the Illinois Shakespeare Festival beginning his 31 plus year journey at UWGB in 1984.

Entwistle says his advice to Theatre students, “No guts, no glory,” “Find something to laugh at everyday,” and “Do yourself a favor and go to the live theatre for your personal benefit.”

The following are the remaining Last Lectures:

  • Oct. 28 — Jeff Entwistle, Professor, Theatre and Dance, “We All Need Theatre in Our Lives and in Our Future”
  • Nov. 18 — Susan Gallagher-Lepak, Associate Professor, Nursing, “E-Learning: The Train has Left the Station”
  • Feb. 17 — Lucy Arendt, Associate Dean, College of Professional Studies, “Made to Serve: The Tragic Corruption of America’s Founding Values”
  • March 23 — Steve Meyer, Associate Professor, Natural and Applied Sciences, “Forget the Three T’s: Focus on the Six C’s”
  • April 13 — Phil Clampitt, Professor, Information and Computing Science, “The Magical Connection between Uncertainty, Innovation, and the Human Spirit.”


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