Condolence Notice — Terry Bennett

This notice is from the archives of The Notice Board. Information contained in this notice was accurate at the time of publication but may no longer be so.

It is with great sadness that we announce that our friend and colleague Terry A. Bennett ended “this strange eventful history,” on February 7, 2019.

Terry joined the Department of Dramatic Arts July, 1994 as an associate professor and continued until his retirement in September, 2004. He was a graduate of Baylor (BA) and the University of Texas at Austin (MFA); his area of expertise was theatre design, which included setting, costumes and lighting.

Colourful doesn’t begin to describe Terry! Our students were introduced to this unique man who brought with him an altogether new way of seeing the world, communicating and teaching. They encountered a man who had worked in university and professional theatres across the United States and Canada. He knew the discipline required to create and he enforced it, but most importantly he understood design and worked with students to free up their creativity, enabling them to generate work that was new and exciting. And, it worked.

According to professional designer Roger Shultz, “He was such a character and quite a mentor to me. Many of the things I have learned and continue to practice are deeply rooted in the classes, instruction and guidance I had with him. I had great respect and fondness for Terry.”

Similar comments were voiced by other students who wrote to say how much they enjoyed Terry’s unconventional approach to teaching and theatre. Professor Emeritus Richard Epp writes that he “thoroughly appreciated Terry’s personal take on life and enjoyed working with him on a number of production projects. He could keep a director guessing, but when he was ready he fairly flew in and convincingly delivered the goods.”

During his time in Alberta, Terry designed for professional theatre companies in Calgary and Vancouver, as well as a large number of shows for The University of Lethbridge. Terry designed five shows for Ches Skinner who remembers him as “an exceptional artist who always pushed the envelope and produced work that, in turn, moved everything beyond the normal boundaries.” 

In additional to designing and directing for the theatre, Terry was also a very good water colourist and, in that role, he often produced work with an Alberta theme.

Terry leaves behind his wife, Dr. Dorothy Chansky, a daughter, Amy Bennett (Eric Rau) and a brother, Bill (Karen).


caroline.zentner |