College of Arts and Humanities
Christopher Niess

Christopher Niess, M.F.A.

Christopher Niess joined the UCF Faculty in 2001. Following is a listing of his responsibilities and participation in the School of Performing Arts:

ACADEMIC

Instruction: MFA Movement Studio (I – IV), BFA Movement for the Actor (I & II), Introduction to Stage Combat, Circus Arts, Period Movement Styles.

Has taught as well (at UCF): Auditions, Intro to Acting, Voice I, Acting for the Non-Major, Theatre Survey

Workshops: Has worked with Michael Aldarondo-Jeffries, Director of Academic Advancement Programs (AAP), Mr. Niess instructed “THEATRE for SCIENCE” – a workshop series using improvisational theatre exercises to develop presentation and work skills for the sciences and business.

Mr. Niess is also on the summer faculty for the International Performing Arts Institute, a three-week summer intensive program in Germany and Austria providing extensive individual instruction to Musical Theatre and Opera students.

He has also worked with Nemours Childrens Hospital in their "Grand Rounds" program giving a presentation on breath and tension release exercises as a gateway to relaxation and clear communication.

Advising: BA Theatre transfers (advises cohort groups on a rotational schedule with other faculty)

RESEARCH and CREATIVE ACTIVITY

Mr. Niess is a stage movement specialist for the department, and participates as a coach and choreographer in a variety of productions, as well as participating in the directing rotation. To View Mr. Niess’ outside professional and educational work, visit his website at: http://christopherniess.wix.com/niess

SERVICE/PROJECTS

Committees/Task Forces (Current): UCF Undergraduate Research Council, URC Awards Committee, School of Performing Arts Graduate Committee, School of Performing Arts – Scholarship and Awards Committee, Task Force - BFA Curriculum, School of Performing Arts – Promotion and Tenure Committee (required).

Past: Theatre Department Chair/Artistic Director – 2009 – 2014 (1 term), Acting Artistic Director – Summer 2016, UCF Faculty Senate – Theatre Representative, Faculty Senate Graduate Appeals Committee, CAH Research Incentive Awards Committee (chair), CAH Teachers Incentive Program Awards Selection Committee, Teachers Incentive Program Awards Criteria Committee, Task Force - Internship, Theatre – School of Performing Arts Planning Committee, Theatre Dance Minor Development Committee, Theatre Peer Review Committee (chair), Theatre Search Committees.

Mr. Niess has chaired 8 MFA Theses Committees, and served on 22 others, as well as chairing the first H.I.M. Thesis Committee in the performing arts.

To schedule an appointment with Mr. Niess, please visit his Doodle.com site to choose a date and time: https://doodle.com/poll/c2gwvfm49t94t3ch

Education

  • M.F.A. in Acting from Kent State University (2000)
  • Certificate in (Post-graduate) Acting from Royal National Theatre Studio - London (2000)
  • B.A. in Theatre from Kent State University (1990)
  • A.A. in Theatre - 4 years of study from University of Nebraska-Lincoln (1982)

Awards

KENNEDY CENTER - AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATRE FESTIVAL, MERITORIOUS ACHIEVEMENT AWARD - Director for The New Mel Brooks Musical - Young Frankenstein! 2017                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   BROADWAY WORLD REGIONAL AWARDS - Best Direction of a Professional Play -- The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby - co-directed with Orlando Shakespeare Theater Artistic Director Jim Helsinger 2015

KENNEDY CENTER - AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATRE FESTIVAL, MERITORIOUS ACHIEVEMENT AWARD - Director for Trevor 2014

KENNEDY CENTER - AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATRE FESTIVAL, MERITORIOUS ACHIEVEMENT AWARD - Movement Choreographer for Marisol 2008

KENNEDY CENTER - AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATRE FESTIVAL, MERITORIOUS ACHIEVEMENT AWARD - Director for Lend Me a Tenor 2007

UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA - TEACHER INCENTIVE AWARD 2006

KENNEDY CENTER - AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATRE FESTIVAL, MERITORIOUS ACHIEVEMENT AWARD - Director for Scapin! 2005

UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA - IN-HOUSE RESEARCH GRANT - Hyper Movement Exploration as Instructional Tool 2002

KENT STATE UNIVERSITY - G. HARRY WRIGHT THEATRE SERVICE AWARD

KENT STATE UNIVERSITY - COLLEGE OF FINE AND PERFORMING ARTS -- CREATIVE ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Activities

http://christopherniess.wix.com/niess

Courses

Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
11262 MUS4674 Perf Musician Health Wellness Mixed-Mode/Reduce Seat-Time(M) Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Not Online
No Description Available
11263 MUS5677 Wellness for Perform Musician Mixed-Mode/Reduce Seat-Time(M) Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Not Online
No Description Available
20447 THE4085 Health & Well Perform Artist Mixed-Mode/Reduce Seat-Time(M) Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Not Online
No Description Available
20448 THE5677 Health & Well Perform Artist Mixed-Mode/Reduce Seat-Time(M) Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Not Online
No Description Available
10399 TPP3513C Movement for the Actor Ⅱ Face to Face Instruction (P) M,F 02:30 PM - 04:20 PM Not Online
No Description Available
19372 TPP5516C Movement Studio Ⅱ Face to Face Instruction (P) M,W,F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM Not Online
No Description Available
Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
80429 TPP3510C Movement for the Actor Ⅰ Face to Face Instruction (P) Tu,Th 03:30 PM - 05:20 PM Available

This class is an introduction to the concepts of stage movement, improvisation and dramatic composition for the actor. It will be an active physical exploration of relaxation, release, and strengthening exercises designed to help the actor develop a more expressive body. The content of the class will include abstract and specific movement exercises designed to free the actor in their use of voice and body in order to promote the development of physical range and dynamics It will also include improvisation with movement, text and vocalization.

81274 TPP4531C Period Movement Face to Face Instruction (P) Tu,Th 09:00 AM - 10:50 AM Available

This class will cover the practice of movement from a variety of periods and styles that are relevant to theatre performance. Movement will include dances, mask work, and social (court) manners. In addition, students will be introduced to period research for class projects.

91336 TPP5515 Movement Studio Ⅰ Face to Face Instruction (P) M,Tu,W,Th,F 01:30 PM - 02:20 PM Available

This class is part of a four semester sequence. It will serve as an introduction to stage movement for the advanced actor. The content of the class will include abstract and specific movement exercises designed to free the actor in their use of voice and body in order to promote the development of physical range and dynamics. Exercises will include a degree of ensemble work, which will require the energy, focus and participation of all students.

Course Number Course Title Mode Session Date and Time Syllabus
50482 THE2000 Theatre Survey World Wide Web (W) A Not Online
No Description Available
Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
11343 MUS4674 Perf Musician Health Wellness Face to Face Instruction (P) Tu,Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Available
No Description Available
11344 MUS5677 Wellness for Perform Musician Face to Face Instruction (P) Tu,Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Available
No Description Available
10430 TPP3513C Movement for the Actor Ⅱ Face to Face Instruction (P) M,F 02:30 PM - 03:50 PM Available
No Description Available
19023 TPP6518C Movement Studio Ⅳ Face to Face Instruction (P) M,Tu,W,Th,F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM Available
No Description Available
Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
80462 TPP3510C Movement for the Actor Ⅰ Face to Face Instruction (P) Tu,Th 03:30 PM - 04:50 PM Available
No Description Available
81421 TPP4531C Period Movement Face to Face Instruction (P) Tu,Th 09:30 AM - 10:50 AM Available
No Description Available
91044 TPP6517 Movement Studio Ⅲ Face to Face Instruction (P) M,Tu,W,Th,F 01:30 PM - 02:20 PM Available
No Description Available

Updated: Dec 6, 2018

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Theatre UCF  •  College of Arts & Humanities at the University of Central Florida
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