Deerfield Academy is proud of its award-winning, active theater program. In a typical year, more than 100 students participate as actors and technicians and more than 2,500 patrons attend four annual productions.

Theater provides a plethora of benefits to those who study it, including increased confidence, resilience, collaboration, discipline, and creativity.


Lori Holmes

Lori Holmes Clark received her BFA at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts in Drama before starting her first rehearsals at the New Amsterdam theater on Broadway two days after graduation. Mrs. Clark has originated Broadway musicals as a performer, understudy, and dance captain, but her heart lies in experimental and immersive theater. She is a proud member of both Actor’s Equity and SAG/AFTRA. Performance highlights include Wicked, Taboo, Footloose, Fosse, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Guiding Light,and documentary films, SHOWBUSINESS: The Road to Broadway and The Joy is in the Work. As choreographer, Lori was trusted to work with many greats including Paul Newman, Bernadette Peters, Kevin Kline, and Meryl Streep. Lori continues to educate and create new work in Europe, across the U.​S.​ and locally. She joined Deerfield Academy in 2010 and has contributed choreography to a decade of dance concerts and the musicals Cabaret,Spring Musical Revue, How I Became a Pirate, and A Sonnet in Your Pocket (Limerence and Rhyme). Lori lives with her husband, Ben, at Clarkdale Fruit Farms with their sons, Emerson and Elliot.

Vincent (VJ) Rougeau Jr.

Vincent is beyond excited to join the Deerfield community as an English Teaching Fellow. Originally from the suburbs of Massachusetts, returning to teach and exploring a new area is a thrilling opportunity to gain a fresh perspective on the place he calls home. In the spring of 2023, Vincent earned a bachelor’s degree in English and philosophy from Brown University, specializing in modern fiction and ethics & epistemology, respectively. Vincent wrote his senior thesis in philosophy on rational action and belief, earning him honors in the department, and he was an active participant in the performing arts, appearing in multiple theatrical productions and briefly leading two a cappella groups. Having held previous positions in educational publishing, advisory for authors of middle-grade and young adult fiction, and tutoring in English, Vincent is committed to learning through literature. He hopes to eventually pursue a graduate degree in one of his former fields of study and cannot wait to share what he has learned with the Deerfield community. Vincent is an avid audiobook listener, a passionate singer, a lover of exercise, and an intense player of board games.

Karen St.Pierre

Karen St.Pierre is the Costume Designer and Craft Artisan responsible for designing all the costumes for Deerfield’s Dance and Theatre productions. She brings to the Academy years of experience in the theatre, film, and television industry. St.Pierre received her honors undergraduate degree in Fiber Arts from Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Karen is the recipient of numerous art awards, including the Marie Walsh Sharpe Scholarship, The Stephen D. Paine Scholarship, Massachusetts College of Art and Design Presidents Award, and most recently an Ovation Award nomination for Best Musical in 2016. Karen has worked on large-scale productions for premier regional theatres, Advertising campaigns, Cannes Film Festival, and with Earth, Wind and Fire to name a few. Karen believes that costume design is a vital art form that is a means of communication. Karen doesn’t confine herself to any particular area of art or fashion as she sees it all as inspiration. She loves the opportunity and challenge of designing for Dance and Theatre in the realm of visual art and where these ideas can transport our imaginations.

Catriona Hynds

After graduating from Glasgow University with a joint Masters degree in English Literature, and Theater Studies (minoring in Philosophy and Archaeology), Ms. Hynds trained to be a professional theater director at the Byre Theater in St. Andrews, Scotland where she collaborated with Arthur Miller on her professional debut. She was the Artistic Director of Theater Works and a professor of acting and directing for various educational institutions such as The Royal Conservatoire, Glasgow, Queen Margaret College, Edinburgh and Manchester Metropolitan University. She came to Deerfield Academy eleven years ago, having been the Managing Director, Development Officer and Education Outreach Officer for the Freed Center for the Performing Arts at Ohio Northern University. Ms. Hynds has been invited to direct all over the world, and has enjoyed working in Mexico, Chile, and Israel. She is most proud of having been invited to direct for the National Theater of Iceland in Reykjavik. As Director of the Theater Program at Deerfield Academy, Ms. Hynds has directed approximately twenty five productions including Medea, All My Sons, 12 Angry Jurors, Cabaret, The Children’s Hour, Little Shop of Horrors, Antigone, and most recently Rumors. A great believer in the impact that live performances have on younger audiences, Ms. Hynds enjoys touring children’s musicals to local schools, and then travelling to her homeland to perform these same productions at the largest theater festival in the world, The Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Ms. Hynds is currently the Chair of the Visual and Performing Arts Department.

Paul Yager

In a career spanning over 4 decades in professional theater and event production, Paul Yager has been privileged to enjoy a nearly 35-year tenure as the first Technical, Scenic, Lighting & Sound Director for Deerfield Academy. He holds a BA in Theater from The State University of New York and an MS from The University of Massachusetts. Paul is a 40-year member of the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees working on hundreds of notable performances, events and productions. Highlights include appearances and performances by such luminaries as James Taylor, Sting, Jackson Browne, Ronald Regan, and Bill Clinton as well as performances by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, touring Broadway productions of Cats and Phantom of the Opera, and many other dance, classical music, educational and entertainment events. His work has included such distinguished venues as Tanglewood Music Center, The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts, Saratoga Performing Arts Center, MGM Springfield Symphony Hall and Mass Mutual Center, UMass Mullins Center and Gillette Stadium.

At Deerfield, Paul has taught technical theater, supervising and training students in the development of each area of production, from props to lighting, set carpentry, painting and many sound and special effects elements. “In Tech Theater, no one sits on the bench” Paul is famous for saying. “Everyone works together, learns and has fun”. Favorite productions during his many years at Deerfield include, “The Diary of Anne Frank”, “Bus Stop”, “Medea” and “Columbinus”. Noteworthy challenges, such as a working waterfall, a giant sandbox, a living green lawn, and set-sized swimming pool regularly showcase his technical skill and creativity.

Paul has especially enjoyed leading five groups of Deerfield students and their productions to London and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland. Paul is excited and honored to work on “Dracula” this Fall as his 100th production at Deerfield Academy.


All courses can be taken as graded or Pass/Fail.

This course explores the principles of acting including ensemble building, improvisation, voice, movement, textual analysis and theater vocabulary. Class assignments include writing and performing monologues, and presenting group scenes and projects. Additionally, students explore various plays from classical to contemporary. No previous acting experience is necessary.

See THE100 description.

Broadway Musicals in American Culture. Few artistic genres are more uniquely “American” than the Broadway musical. This course examines American musical theatre and organizes our exploration around recurrent themes from the Broadway stage, such as the immigrant experience, race, religion, love, protest, storytelling, gender identity, and sexual orientation. We will study the music and shows in the context of a broader study of the American cultural, political, and sociological history that shaped their production. No prior musical or theatrical experience is required, and students will have the option to choose more or fewer performance-based projects as they prefer. Can be taken as THE130 or MUS130.

Broadway Musicals in American Culture. Few artistic genres are more uniquely “American” than the Broadway musical. This course examines American musical theatre and organizes our exploration around recurrent themes from the Broadway stage, such as the immigrant experience, race, religion, love, protest, storytelling, gender identity, and sexual orientation. We will study the music and shows in the context of a broader study of the American cultural, political, and sociological history that shaped their production. No prior musical or theatrical experience is required, and students will have the option to choose more or fewer performance-based projects as they prefer. Can be taken as THE130 or MUS130.

Acting Technique is for students interested in expanding their ability to communicate through a variety of techniques that engage the individual and ensemble physically, mentally and emotionally. Through monologues, scene work, and improvisation, students explore the act of making theater of all types. No previous acting experience is necessary! May be taken as 6th course: THE200P.

See THE200 description.

Committed acting students are encouraged to progress to a more advanced study of acting and to contribute to the development of a creative ensemble.  In addition to learning more complex acting techniques in preparation for the scene work to come, students delve into the world of directing for theater. Students work on a major directing assignment, which culminates in directing a scene with their peers as performers, from their chosen play. Several plays from around the world are read and analyzed throughout the course. No previous acting experience is necessary! May be taken as 6th course: THE300P.

Anything Goes: Musical Theater is for students interested in learning the basic principles of acting and singing in a musical theater context. Over the length of this course, students will gain practical and theoretical knowledge of musicals through creative work for performance pieces and contextual lessons on musical theater history. No previous experience is necessary, although some background in singing is helpful.

This course analyzes and critiques classic and contemporary cinema from around the world. We shall examine basic elements of film production, comparative filmmaking styles and various genres such as Film Noir, Surrealism and Italian Neo-realism. Additionally, students study prominent international filmmakers such as Alfred Hitchcock, Vittorio De Sica and many more. Weekly screenings are mandatory.

See THE310 description.

This elective is for students who have an interest in a more in-depth study of theater. In addition to honing performance skills, students will explore a number of wide-ranging plays of different genres from around the world. There will also be several performance and directing opportunities throughout the term, culminating in a class presentation. For seniors, this may be your final opportunity to perform at Deerfield Academy!

See THE400 description.

Take to the stage

Since 2002 Deerfield has been selected four times to represent the United States in the American High School Theatre Festival at the world-renowned Edinburgh International Fringe Festival in Scotland. There are plenty of ways to get involved in theater at Deerfield. Numerous classes are offered throughout the year, ranging in levels from Acting I to Acting and Directing for Production, a tutorial-level class. More focused courses and workshops on Shakespeare, writing, directing, auditioning, and improvisation, are offered at various points throughout the year.

Faculty and Staff

  1. Catriona Hynds

    Visual & Performing Arts Department Chair, Theatre Director

Visual and Performing Arts Calendar

Frequently Asked Questions

Before they enter Deerfield, all new students are required to take a math placement test to determine an appropriate class. Students who have already taken a language they wish to continue studying at Deerfield will take a placement test to determine what level class they should take. If the placement in either department is deemed inappropriate after the student arrives, then the teacher may suggest a change of level. Students may also request such a change if they feel they are misplaced, and should consult with their teacher and their academic advisor before contacting the Dean of Studies.

Students have a variety of opportunities to travel abroad through the Center for Service and Global Citizenship travel programs that run domestic and international trips during school breaks.

Study abroad and term-away opportunities are available to students through approved, partnered-programs. Study abroad is available in 10th through 12th grade, but typically students who choose to go abroad will do so during their junior year. Read more about off-campus study opportunities online here.

Yes. In order to garner Honors distinction a student must have a cumulative term average above 90.0%. High Honors requires an average of 93.0% or above. You can read more about Deerfield’s honor roll online here.

Because of its commitment to high-quality academics, Deerfield offers a wide range of rigorous courses. All of Deerfield’s classes are appropriately challenging, but courses designated as “honors,” “accelerated,” or “AP” provide an extra challenge for ambitious students.

All students are assigned a faculty advisor by late summer before they start school. After their first year, students may choose a new advisor, or continue with their original advisor, depending on the relationships they have developed with Deerfield’s faculty. Advisors are responsible for submitting course requests and writing an advisor report every term. They are available for questions a student may have and are involved in every major academic, co-or extra-curricular decision a student makes while at Deerfield. In addition, faculty eat lunch with their advisees every Thursday and may schedule other meetings for their advisees. Advisors are a key component of the Deerfield experience, as they provide guidance and support to students throughout their time at Deerfield.

Students are permitted to miss a maximum of eight (8) combined class days for Pursuits of Excellence, College Visits or other reasons each academic year (no more than 6 days missed per term). Exceptions to the eight-day limit must be approved through the Academic Affairs Office. Requests must be received at least three (3) days prior to the event. Any student requesting to miss class should make sure they are aware of the 20% Rule policy (found in the Student Handbook under the 20% Rule), and, if their request is approved, students should be sure to inform their teacher(s) of their upcoming absence(s) and arrange to make up missed work. Please click here to read more about our Request to Miss Classes Policy.

Alums and current students can request their Deerfield transcript online via our secure credentialing site, Parchment. More information on how to create a Parchment account and order your transcript can be found online here. If you have questions, please contact the Academic Affairs Office at 413-774-1470 or

Contact Academics
Fax 413-772-1128

Boyden Library
Mon–Fri, 8am–4pm

7 Boyden Lane, PO Box 87
Deerfield, MA 01342