Paul Baker and Integration of Abilities Moves to Trinity
In 1962, Paul Baker obtained the rights to produce Eugene O’Neill’s play Long Day’s Journey into Night at Baylor University. What began as a typical production turned into the biggest controversy of Baker’s career. After the Baylor administration canceled the play for its language, the entire drama department faculty resigned in protest. The former Baylor Theater then moved to San Antonio to establish a theater department at Trinity University.
At Trinity, Baker developed a vibrant theater department from scratch through his role as the department chair of Speech and Drama. In fewer than four years, Trinity was home to a stunning multi-theater facility with an accompanying large scale production schedule. The course offerings expanded from a few classes taught by two professors to almost thirty classes taught by a dozen professors, and the number of Speech and Drama majors similarly swelled in number.
Baker’s Integration of Abilities class was the common bond and philosophical foundation undergirding this growing department. Based on Baker’s teaching philosophy, the Integration of Abilities class focused on the development of individual creativity through integrated arts. Baker firmly believed that anyone could be a creative, and through this course, this belief formed the basis for all aspects of arts education at Trinity. This ‘Baker Philosophy’ would refine arts education at Trinity and beyond, inspiring generations of undergraduates with a faith in their own creative genius.
It was quite a journey from Baker’s Long Day’s Journey into Night at Baylor to his inaugural production of A Different Drummer at Trinity’s Ruth Taylor Theater. The journey took Baker and his Integration of Abilities philosophy across Texas, from Waco to San Antonio. Use the timeline below to explore this exciting journey in more detail.