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Department ofTheatre and Dance

Patt Ness

Patt Ness
Patt Ness


Patt Ness joined the theatre department faculty as Lecturer and Costume Shop Supervisor in the fall of 2013. She attended The State University of New York at New Paltz where, in 1986, she earned a B.S. in Visual Arts with a minor in theatre. Then she went on to study at the University of Minnesota where in 1996 she received an M.F.A. in Design and Technical Theatre with a concentration in costumes.

Patt has worked at many theatres in a variety of capacities and in a number of regions. She has worked as a costume technician at The Minnesota Opera, The Boston Ballet, The Santa Fe Opera, NYU Tisch School of the Arts and The Guthrie Theatre and as the Costume Shop Manager at Weston Playhouse in Vermont, Northeastern University in Boston, and Portland Stage Company in Maine.

In 1999 she joined the faculty of Communication Studies and Theatre at Longwood University in Virginia as Assistant Professor and taught there for 6 years. Prior to her appointment at SCU, she worked for 5 years as Costume Technician for VEE Corp in Minneapolis in their Costumes and Creatures Shop, making full-body character costumes for Sesame Street Live.

Patt has in the past, taught Costume Design and Stage Makeup. She currently teaches Costume Construction and Production Workshop.

In July 2017, Patt designed costumes for a production of Dog Sees God with EPIC Players NYC, a Manhattan-based neuro-inclusive theater company that seeks to both empower artists with learning disabilities as well as increase their inclusion within the mainstream arts scene.

As for her classroom achievements, Patt has created a service learning project as part of the curriculum for her Costume Construction class.  Patt and her students make brightly colored cotton dresses which are then donated to the organization, Little Dresses for Africa. LDFA, founded in 2008 is based in Michigan and distributes donated handmade dresses to girls in need all over the African continent.

Patt enjoys her continued work designing costumes for our annual dance concert, Images, and is particularly proud of her 2019 design for Kristin Kusanovich’s piece, "Ohio, Etowah, Iowa," a deeply moving piece based on actual stories of social injustice.

In June of 2019, Patt volunteered for and attended Arts in Corrections: Reframing the Landscape of Justice, presented by California Lawyers for the Arts and The Justice Arts Coalition of SCU. The conference hosted expert practitioners, educators, lawyers and artists working in the field of arts in correctional facilities. It was an incredibly rewarding and inspiring experience.