Jackson State University alumnus Prince Duren has been named director of the Department of Theatre. The Itta Bena, Mississippi, native received his bachelor’s degree in mass communications and English from the HBCU in 2010. He has been an assistant theatre professor at JSU since 2013.
“I am committed to leading the theatre department to new heights and helping this community regain its appreciation of theatre. Being a part of the ‘college of culture,’ our productions will represent to the fullest our motto: “where scholarship and artistry meet.”
After graduating from JSU, Duren pursued a Master of Fine Arts in playwriting at the University of Arkansas. Although he enjoys acting, Duren garnered his most notable success as a playwright. His most acclaimed awards include: The Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award from the John F. Kennedy Center Theatre Festival; The Mississippi Theatre Association Award for Playwriting, The Manhattan Theatre Festival Award; and Guest Playwright Artist for 40th Anniversary of The Black Academy of Arts and Letters Play Series, to name a few.
In 2016, he published five plays and authored his first textbook titled “The Road to Your First Play.” When it comes to theatre, Duren says he has yet to construct his greatest dialogue, create his most memorable character, or conceive his greatest play. Therefore, he is always working towards that ultimate goal.