The UC Davis Granada Artist-in-Residence program is unique in American university theater, bringing prominent theater artists—directors, playwrights, choreographers, or filmmakers—to Davis each academic quarter to teach and create a work for public performance. A special opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students to work closely with major theater and dance practitioners, it is a unique cross-cultural experience.
Traditionally, the program hosted British practitioners exclusively, but in recent years it has been expanded to include distinguished artists from all parts of the globe, including the U.S., to better reflect the rich cultural mix of students at UC Davis. Normally, each quarter sees one Granada Artist-in-Residence, although in winter 2001 the department welcomed two—playwright Stephen Jeffreys and director Annabel Arden—and in winter 2006 we hosted choreographers Joanna Haigood and Doug Varone for another joint project. All Granada artists work closely with the permanent faculty to integrate their unique talents and areas of interest into the existing curriculum.
Kirsten Brandt is an award-winning playwright, director and producer. She served for six seasons as Artistic Director of Sledgehammer Theatre where she directed over a dozen plays and wrote Berzerkergang, The Frankenstein Project, and NU. She was the Associate Artistic Director of San Jose Repertory Theatre, where she directed Dr. Faustus, Next Fall, The Big Meal, Legacy of Light and Groundswell, among others. As a director, Ms.
Originally the Department of Theatre and Dance faculty conceived of establishing a relationship with a professional production company in order to draw upon the expertise of eminent professionals who would come to the department for a limited time to create and teach.Faculty member Dan Snyder, who had worked as a designer for Granada Television Ltd (best known in the U.S. for its productions of Brideshead Revisited, The Jewel in the Crown, and Lost Empires), suggested that the department approach Granada, which had a wealth of contacts in British theater.