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Stauffer to join Alda Center as applied improvisation lecturer

Kim StaufferKim Stauffer, an actor and theater professor, will join the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science as an applied improvisation lecturer this fall.

Stauffer comes to the Alda Center from SUNY Albany, where she has taught as head of acting for the past seven years. She has also collaborated with UAlbany’s School of Social Welfare on a series of projects that use applied improvisational skills and techniques to help students in social work learn to listen deeply and connect meaningfully with clients and others.

“Kim’s background in using applied improvisation to help people build interpersonal connections aligns beautifully with the Alda Center,” said Laura Lindenfeld, Alda Center executive director and dean of the School of Communication and Journalism. “At the Center, we blend applied improvisation with social science to help researchers share their work and its significance with the world, and Kim comes to us with the same commitment of using theater to bridge differences and establish positive relationships.”

Stauffer is deeply committed to using theater to advance and support societal goals. In addition to her work with social work students, she contributed to UAlbany Theater Program’s Moving Forward  initiative to discuss and incorporate efforts around diversity, equity and inclusion into theater, including creating safe spaces and examining work for legacies of colonialism. She has also worked to ensure that intimate scenes on stage are rehearsed and staged with regard to consent, personal boundaries and open, productive communication.

Stauffer previously taught acting at Smith College, the University of North Carolina Greensboro, and Williams College. She has been a guest artist at Union College, University of Massachusetts Amherst and Eastern Mennonite University. 

As a professional actor, she has performed with New York Classical Theatre and a variety of regional theaters across the country.

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