Monday, April 22, 2019

Harold Oaks receives a Distinguished Service Award from BYU.

Harold R. Oaks (BA ’60) of Provo, the former department chair of BYU’s Theatre and Media Arts Department and former associate and acting dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communications, developed a specialty in children’s theater that took him to the top of his field both nationally and internationally.  Having taught at four other universities, Oaks says it was wonderful to teach, research, and produce in a gospel environment at BYU.

“To a great extent, BYU has not only influenced my life—but it was my life for thirty-two years,” he says. “The excellent students in and outside my department have been a blessing.”

Among his many awards is the Honorary President’s Award from the International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People.

Upon his retirement from BYU, he and his wife, Ima, served several missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and at the request of the Church, they developed a series of health-education puppet shows that have been used in more than two dozen countries around the world and have been translated into more than sixteen languages.

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    0 Response

    1. Megan Ann

      Dr. Oaks had a powerful influence on me as I first entered the field of Theatre for Young Audiences. Dr. Oaks gave me the opportunity to tour with Brigham Young University’s Young Company production of David Saar’s “Yellow Boat”. In addition to our regular regional tour, we had the opportunity to tour throughout Norway and to perform at the international congress and festival in Tromso, Norway. The experience changed my life and started my career in TYA.

      I also worked with Dr. Oaks on his puppetry project that has spanned the globe. This project has blessed the lives of children in many countries. For example, the puppets are used to teach basic hygiene principles to children in Africa and are used to warn children of the harmful effects of alcohol and tobacco throughout Europe.

      Congratulations Dr. Oaks!

      Megan Ann

      Megan Ann Rasmussen
      President, Theatre for Young Audiences/USA

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