John Thomas Holt to hold historical seminar

By ASU Press Release
On November 6, 2011

Actor, historian and heritage interpreter John Thomas Holt will hold a seminar Wednesday, Nov. 16, at the Arkansas State University Dean B. Ellis Library Auditorium, Room 182. The seminar gets underway at 1:30 p.m. and the final segment begins at 4:30 p.m. Admission is free.

Although Holt is not an Arkansas State alum, his seminar is part of the radio-television department's Alumni Professional-In-Residence Series. The seminar is taking place in coordination with the ASU Heritage Studies program and the theater departments.

Holt specializes in the Colonial, Revolutionary and Civil War periods. He and wife Dru Duncan currently operate the Widner-Magers Farm Historical District in Dell, Ark. The 1930's period farm museum is on the National Registry of Historic Places. Their experience in historical characterization includes costumed interpretation at Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia.

In addition to his historical expertise, Holt has performed as an actor in many feature films that use re-enactors in historical military scenes. His film credits include Gettysburg, The New World, Cold Mountain, Gods and Generals, Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) and British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) productions and many others.

Seminar topics and activities include and introduction and welcome at 1:30 p.m. At 1:40 p.m., Holt will present "Working on the Set of a Major Motion Picture," which includes logistics, working with directors and assistant directors, staying focused during long days and living the part.

Following at 2:20 p.m. is "Screening of Clips from Holt's Filmography," including excerpts from Cold Mountain, Gods and Generals, Gettysburg and The New World.

After a short break at 3 p.m., Holt will present "Demonstration of How Battle Scenes are Choreographed and Staged," at 3:10 p.m., which includes handling weapons, hand-to-hand combat, taking blows and punches and falling.

"Creating and Collecting Historically Authentic Costume, Weapons and Properties" will take place at 3:50 p.m. and the seminar will close at 4:30 p.m. with questions and presentations.

Contact Alex Brown, instructor in radio-television, at (870) 972-3070 for additional information.

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