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Drama Program

Oakland Tech's Drama Program is led by Ms. Colleen Egan and Mr. Casey Fern.

The Oakland Tech Drama department focuses on modern and classical theatre training with the goal of building personal integrity and strong community. Beginning and intermediate drama students learn theatre skills such as: vocal training, improvisation, text analysis, playwriting, character development, physical theatre, and spoken word. Advanced students are a part of the pre-professional student ensemble, OakTech Rep that focus is the production of Oakland Tech’s play productions. Recognized for the last 6 years as one of the top high school theatre programs in the U.S. by the American High School Theatre Festival, OakTech Rep specializes in original, collaboratively created productions that are both timeless to the human condition and relevant to our times.

See Recent Performances for video and photos include Romeo and Juliet (November 2023), The Play That Goes Wrong, (April 2023), Alice in Wonderland (October 2022), Clue (April 2022), and Much Ado About Nothing (November 2021).

Courses offered

Beginning Drama

In this class, students will learn to use their bodies, voices, and develop their writing to express their ideas and perform meaningful works of theatre. Students in drama class work together, sweat together, and create together in the “empathy gym” of theatre.

Advanced Drama

Oakland Tech’s advanced drama production class is the pre-professional student theatre company, OakTech Rep. Enrollment is by audition only. Auditions occur in the 2nd to 3rd week of each semester. Advanced drama students engage in a rigorous training program in theatrical technique and performance. Classes operate as rehearsals with student leadership and ensemble responsibilities that focus on the creation and production of full-length plays. OakTech Rep often works with professional theatre guest artists; and participate in extensive field study opportunities including Arts research, play-writing, and attending professional theatrical events throughout the school year.

Stagecraft

Introduces students to concepts of stagecraft and design for performance.

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About Colleen Egan

Colleen Egan is a Bay Area native. Ms. Egan worked as an actor and director in the San Francisco area before transitioning into a full time teaching career. Ms. Egan taught Drama, Literature, and Special Education at Leadership Public Schools - Hayward for five years before joining the amazing Tech community. Ms. Egan holds a BA in Drama from Seattle University and a M.Ed in Urban Education from Holy Names University. She has a son named Owen.

About Casey Fern

Mr. Fern is a teacher, builder, designer, stage manager, and performer. The 2022-2023 school year will be his 13th year at Oakland Technical High School as the director of the Tech Techies after-school program, as well as his 4th year teaching Drama and Stagecraft in the classroom. At Oakland Tech, Casey has trained countless students to play the roles of scenic designer, stage manager, technical director, lighting designer, sound mixer, prop master, and backstage captain for numerous Drama, Dance, and Music productions on the OT Auditorium stage (and played those roles himself whenever needed!)

Casey holds a B.A. in Theatre from Seattle University, where he learned from a mixture of formal training in his classes and experience-based training in the university’s mainstage productions. Casey brings that spirit of multifaceted learning to his teaching at Oakland Tech, pushing students to develop new skills by jumping in to new roles and learning on the job whenever possible. Outside of Oakland Tech, Casey has been the Technical Director for Gritty City Repertory Youth Theatre since its beginnings in 2012. Originally from Hawaii, Casey now lives in Alameda with his wife Colleen Egan and their son Owen (the littlest Techie).