Janet McCoy, 334/844-9999



AUBURN -- Dyann Robinson, a faculty member in Auburn University's Department of Theatre who retired early this year, has been given a one-year special appointment as Scholar-In-Residence with theatre.

"Dyann will contribute immensely based on her great talents to the cultural diversity of this campus," AU interim Provost John Pritchett said. "I believe her appointment is especially significant given the campus-wide diversity initiatives that are underway at this time."

Worth Gardner, chair of AU's Department of Theatre, said he is "thrilled that theatre is the first home for this special appointment."

"Dyann's work transcends teaching and, whether in the classroom teaching dance or choreography, she brings an artistry to bear on our students and community," he said.

A professional dancer who performed on Broadway, Robinson will direct a play she has written called "Strange Fruit: The Story of an Alabama Lynching."

The play, which will be performed Oct. 2-6 and Oct. 8-11 at Telfair Peet Theatre, will be the 2002 season opener for the Department of Theatre.

In 2001, Robinson was awarded one of four Governor's Arts Awards from the Alabama State Council on the Arts.

Robinson, who taught dance and directed plays in AU's Department of Theatre, began teaching at Auburn in 1987. The associate professor created five original full-length dance dramas for the department.

A Tuskegee native, Robinson returned to her birthplace following a successful Broadway dance career that included a position as assistant choreographer for the hit musical, "Bubbling Brown Sugar." She also taught and performed at the National Center for African-American Artists in Boston and at the Dance Theatre of Harlem in New York City.

Before joining AU, she was director of Tuskegee's Department of Cultural Affairs and staged "Bubbling Brown Sugar" for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.

Robinson is also the founder of the Tuskegee Repertory Theatre, Inc. School and Dance Company, and the Jessie Clinton Arts Centre, located in the city's old post office.

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CONTACT: Robinson or Gardner, 334/844-4748.