Connor Wiedenbeck, Theatre and Drama

On Dec. 19, UW–Madison will celebrate its Winter 2021 Commencement. We reached out to a few of our students who are graduating from programs in the School of Education to learn about their favorite UW–Madison memories and future plans. Following is a Q&A with Connor Wiedenbeck, who is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in theatre and drama. 

Photo of Connor WiedenbeckWhat brought you to UW–Madison?

I was born in Madison and have lived within the Dane County area my whole life. After I graduated from Sun Prairie High School and got my liberal arts associate degree from Madison Area Technical College, I still felt like I could use some hands-on experience working on theater productions. The BS in theatre and drama at UW–Madison seemed like a good next step.

What is your major, and how did you choose your major?

Senior year of high school, I acted in my first ever theatrical production. I had such a great time and got to meet a lot of nice people. It was the first time I felt like I had something I wanted to do with my life. While doing some work at MATC, I discovered a fascination for lighting. So, I decided to pursue that at UW–Madison.

What was your most meaningful experience at UW–Madison?

Working on theater productions truly is a great way to get hands-on experience and get to know people as you work on trying to achieve the same goal: creating an experience people want to see.

What was your favorite class or teacher, and why?

You are going to make me choose?! … Probably Lighting Design 2. My experience was unique, because our class got to work on a production together. As we worked on “Sonnets for an Old Century,” we not only had our professor Megan Reilly (to support us), but each other as well.

Any advice for incoming students?

Never hesitate to ask theatre instructors questions. Each of them is passionate about what they do and want you to succeed and be as passionate about it as they are.  

What are your future plans? 

With December upon us, many theaters will be looking for hands in their summer line-up. I’m hoping to work as an assistant lighting designer or assistant electrician for one of these theaters.

What is a “hidden gem” on campus, or in Madison?

This semester, my favorite place to take a breather was the Light Lab. Whenever it was not in use, I’d sometimes go in there to relax and think.

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