Posting Date: April 6, 2010
Photo by Linda Tincher
Meet Lori Bumpus: Embracing
By Tabatha Wahlquist
Lori Bumpus is proof that an open mind
brings opportunity. The Kennesaw State University theatre and performance studies student, through plenty of trial and error, has discovered her true calling. Recently, Lori made the decision to study musical theater. “A part of me has always wanted to be on stage in a musical, but I was more comfortable backstage,” says Lori, who worked primarily in stage management and set design prior to changing directions. She was stage manager for the KSU production of “The Apple Tree” last fall, which inspired her to do more on-stage work.
“I thought to myself, I can do that,” says Lori, who dabbled in many other interests before musical theater. Prior to her current studies, she worked in film and was the set designer for the KSU student film “Leap Frog,” produced by TPS students and alumni. During Lori’s freshman year at KSU, she was stage manager for several student-produced works by The Collective, a group of young professional and student artists from the Atlanta area.
“The Apple Tree,” however, was Lori’s first serious stage managing opportunity. While working on the production, Lori took acting classes to prepare to work in musical theater. “I have been all over the place, but I have had a lot of support from the KSU faculty. They will help me get there,” says Lori.
Lori appreciates KSU Technical Director and Production Coordinator Kenyon Shiver for his encouragement early in her college career. Lori worked with Shiver as a technical volunteer on various KSU productions. Shiver recalls, “She was always cheerful and ready to accomplish any task given to her. She helped create a pleasant working environment and was bright, competent and reliable.”
Lori is also grateful for her fellow classmates, who have inspired her through her many directions in the TPS program. Lori says, “The older upperclassmen really try to support the freshmen. It’s nice to have a personal coach—someone with experience that I can collaborate with.”
KSU has offered Lori the options she needed to find her true calling. “I really wasn’t sure what I wanted to study.” Her outlook has given her the chance to see the many dimensions of the TPS program and find the right fit. “I just take whatever opportunities are given to me."The KSU junior has no immediate plans for after graduation but is opportunistic. Lori says, “Whenever you plan, it doesn’t go that way. I would rather go with the flow and see what happens.”