Faculty Profile: Russell Longtin
After 40 years in the theater and more than 200 productions, Russ Longtin still follows the advice he gives his students: "Do not ever, ever give up your passion." As the eldest of 15 children, Russ was encouraged to pursue another profession. "But my parents raised me to be stubborn, and I refused to give up on theater." He obtained a Ph.D. in acting and directing from the University of Michigan and then worked in New York. He grew weary of city life, so he pursued college teaching and, along with it, directing and acting in campus plays. "It's the smartest thing I ever did," he says. He also performs in community and professional theater.
Russ feels fortunate to work at Johnson State College. "We have small classes that allow professors to do personal one-on-ones with students, and an administration that is very supportive of the arts." His teaching style is, well, theatrical. "Each day, each class, each assignment is a performance. I walk in and perform for an hour and twenty minutes. I like to get the class involved. Lecturing is way out of date."
His acting credits include the title role in Hamlet, King Henry in The Lion in Winter, Theo/Vincent in Vincent, and in 2000, he received the Faculty Fellowship Award for his performance in King Lear. During his sabbatical, Russ traveled the one-man play Barrymore. In Vermont, Russ has worked with the Icefire Theater Company, The Stowe Theater Guild, Lost Nation Theater, Vermont Stage Company, Wilmington Center for the Arts, Upstairs Stage, Northern Stage. Additionally, he has performed in 'the best roles of his career' at the Quarry Works Theater over the past five years as Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night, Phil Hogan in Moon for the Misbegotten, Tyrone in Long Day's Journey into Night, Iago in Othello and soon, George in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Dibden Center for the Arts, Room 217