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Franklin - Local Town Pages

Dean College Announces Formation of the Schools of Performing Arts

Dean College, located in Franklin, Mass., is thrilled to announce the creation of the Schools of Performing Arts, a dynamic and innovative institution that merges the best elements of the School of the Arts and the Joan Phelps Palladino School of Dance. This groundbreaking school will be under the esteemed leadership of Interim Dean, Jim Beauregard, a highly respected 30-year veteran of the Dean faculty, and Interim Assistant Dean, Stephen Tracey-Ursprung, whose commitment to academic excellence and student engagement is unparalleled.
“I am excited to serve as the Interim Dean of the Schools of Performing Arts at Dean,” said Jim Beauregard. “This unique convergence of talents is designed to provide a multifaceted, interdisciplinary approach to performing arts education, offering our students the flexibility to explore and refine their passions with professional rigor. The new Schools of Performing Arts will harness the synergies of theatre, dance, music and arts management into one cohesive unit.”
Experiential Learning & The Dean Difference
At the core of the School of Performing Arts is The Dean Difference, a unique philosophy centered around exceptional student support and engagement. The curriculum will feature innovative and experiential learning opportunities such as:
• Collaborative Productions: Real-world experience through collaborative projects that involve theatre productions, dance performances and musical showcases.
• Industry Internships: Partnerships with leading arts organizations to provide students with invaluable, hands-on internship experiences.
• Master Classes: Workshops and seminars conducted by industry experts, including notable choreographers, directors and music producers.
• Public Performances: Multiple sold-out “Mainstage” performances every semester.
• Capstone Projects: Signature senior-level work in a culminating presentation.
Jim Beauregard: Celebrating 30 Years of Artistic Excellence
For three decades, Interim Dean, Jim Beauregard, has been a cornerstone of Dean excelling as Associate Professor of Theatre and Dance and Technical Director. With his unparalleled vision and passion for all aspects of the arts he has directed and choreographed over 40 plays, and his technical finesse has graced more than 150 theatre and dance productions. As founder and director of Dean College Summer Theatre, Beauregard has nurtured countless talents to pursue their passion.
Beauregard’s teaching encompasses courses like technical production, acting, musical theatre ensemble, movement improvisation, stage combat, character study for dancers, and public speaking. His leadership extends beyond the classroom; he has chaired the Faculty Personnel Policy Committee and served on numerous committees, including the Appeals and Rank Committees.
As an arts administrator and academic leader with a diverse background in the management of theatre production, he is a dedicated advocate for theatre education. Beauregard spent seven years on the executive board for The Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KC/ACTF), Region I. His passion was recognized with the Kennedy Center Gold Medallion, and his directorial work, including the award-winning production of “Urinetown,” earned national acclaim.
Currently, as Artistic Director at Homebrewed Theatre Company, Beauregard continues to champion original material, featuring many Dean College alumni. Beauregard, an Army veteran, has a B.A. and M.A. in Theatre and Dance from Rhode Island College.
Stephen Tracey-Ursprung: Innovating Dance Education
Interim Assistant Dean, Stephen Tracey-Ursprung, brings vision and enthusiasm, focusing on dance composition, history, and pedagogy. Tracey-Ursprung has showcased fresh perspectives as the producer of the annual Arts Mosaic performance series and has choreographed numerous pieces that showcase innovative student work.
Tracey-Ursprung chairs the curriculum committee, plays a pivotal role in the academic program review team, and mentors the Dean College chapter of the National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA). Beyond Dean, he recently completed a prestigious research fellowship at Jacob’s Pillow, a historic center for American modern dance.
An active performer and educator, Tracey-Ursprung contributes to Dancing Legacy, co-directs the NilsSprung Dance Project and Reject Dance Theatre, and co-chairs the DANCE 2050 initiative for the National Dance Education Organization. He holds a B.A. in Economics and Italian Studies from Brown University and an M.F.A. in Dance from Smith College.
Dean College is deeply proud to recognize the outstanding efforts of Beauregard and Tracey-Ursprung, whose passion and commitment continue to inspire our artistic community.