While working at Pioneer Theater Company and Cleveland Play House, Jim Swonger offered courses in sound design and engineering at the University of Utah and Cleveland State University.

In these courses, Jim …
… provided students with as many “hands-on” experiences as possible so they would become comfortable with complex and ever-changing equipment used to create sound for the theater.
… encouraged students to expand their knowledge of the musical forms that often influence the creation of a theatrical soundscape (e.g., music history and theory, composition, world musical styles, etc.).
… emphasized the importance of safety procedures when working with the electrical equipment and rigging systems used by sound designers and engineers in theatre productions.

For an overview of Jim's teaching philosophy, please click here.

His university-level teaching included:

Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio

• Taught Sound Design 1 for the undergraduate students and acted as advisor to student sound designers.

Adjunct Assistant Professor
Department of Theater, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

• Taught Sound Engineering and Design for the Theater (1994-2000) for graduate and undergraduate students, as well as the sound portion of Introduction to Lighting and Sound for the Theater (1998-2000) for undergraduates. Also presented a mandatory seminar in pyrotechnic safety with the local fire marshal for undergraduates.
• Designed sound, or advised student sound designers, for all university productions. Supervised independent studies for undergraduate designers, maintained and upgraded new equipment.

For selections from the syllabus for Jim's Sound Design 1 course, please click here.

In addition to these university courses, Jim offered seminars and workshops on various aspects of sound design and theater procedures (such as pyrotechnic safety). He conducted orientation sessions in sound and projection engineering for professional colleagues as well as led topical discussions for theater students. In addition, he mentors students interested in sound design or engineering.

Further information on Jim’s teaching activities is available upon request.

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