Southeast Missouri State University

Joseph Mason

Department of Theatre and Dance
Spotlight_Mason_2009

As the newest faculty member in Southeast’s Department of Theatre and Dance, Joe Mason didn’t waste any time before getting right into the action.  He joined Southeast’s faculty on Aug. 1, 2009, and immediately took on the role of director of musical productions for the Department of Theatre and Dance.  He served as music director and conductor for "Little Shop of Horrors," which premiered on Sept. 30, 2009, and will serve in the same capacity for the spring production of "Carousel."

Joe’s full-time position at Southeast is as an instructor for music theory and analysis for musical theater class.  He also accompanies the class voice and musical theater performance classes.  He holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in music, dance and theater from Brigham Young University and a master of music degree from The Boston Conservatory of Music.

Prior to coming to Southeast, Joe was employed at the prestigious North Shore Music Theatre in Beverly, Mass.  He started there while still a graduate student at The Boston Conservatory, then joined the full-time staff in June 2007 as the director of musical studies in the education department for the Theatre.  Joe directed several programs and events and also provided accompaniment for classes and workshops offered at the Theatre.  He also offered vocal lessons and was a vocal coach to students in the area and actors working on shows during the performance season.

“It was an honor to be in the middle of a professional theatre like North Shore, not only offering the talents I had, but also learning from the talents of the many professionals passing through the halls of such a cultural and artistic resource,” he says.

After graduating from The Boston Conservatory, Joe was a faculty member in the theatre department at Walnut Hill School for the Performing Arts in Natick, Mass.  He was a musical theater instructor, as well as a vocal coach to the students. He also served as music director for the summer theater program before coming to Southeast.

“There have been a few productions I have been privileged to be a part of, namely, 'Oliver,' starring Christopher Lloyd at Robert Redford’s Sundance Theater, and singing as a featured soloist for the Boston Pop’s holiday concert at Boston Symphony Hall,” Joe says.
Joe says he always wanted to teach on the university level, he just didn’t know when that would happen.

“I started teaching right after graduation from The Boston Conservatory. I also directed the music for local productions of musicals and performed in musicals, as time allowed.  As an artist, there is usually a moment you will be a teacher, whether it is on the stage or in the classroom,” he explains.  “One of the most rewarding parts of this profession is the moment when both the student and the teacher understand one another.”

For the future, Joe says he plans to learn as much as he can from other professionals in music, theater and dance.

“I would also like to learn how to play the guitar,” he says.

In his spare time, Joe likes to travel and spend time with his wife and two young daughters.

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