Student Focus: Kaushik Raghavan

smiling man with beardName: Kaushik Raghavan
Major: Performing Arts 
Hometown: Iowa City, IA
Planned Graduation Date: Spring 2025

What theatre projects have your recently completed or have coming up?
This last summer I worked at The Santa Fe Opera. There I was stage crew for Tosca, The Flying Dutchman, Pelleas et Melisande, Rusalka, and Orfeo. I also got to assistant direct a scene for the Apprentice Scenes. When I got back to Iowa State, I was the assistant director for ISU Theatre's production of Head Over Heels. More recently, I directed Episode Four of Machinal for the SDC Competition at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF), which advanced to the finals. I also directed a concert reading of a new ten-minute play at KCACTF. Finally, I will be performing as Dr. Moxie in ISU Theatre's production of Always Plenty of Light at the Starlight All Night Diner.

What is your favorite thing about your experiences at Iowa State?
All of the friends that I have made. I came to a new city with only a couple friends from high school, and I was amazed at the community here. My first year was 2020 during the worst of Covid, but I was shocked at the amount of people who went out of their way to make sure I felt welcome. I have made friends that I know will last a lifetime here. One other thing that I have loved about the Department of Music and Theatre is that they have allowed me to try several things. I came to school thinking I wanted to be a scenic designer, but after being an actor, props designer, stage crew, and even an assistant scenic designer, I realized that I wanted to be a director. I never would have found this passion if the department didn't let me try different things.

Why did you choose the Department of Music and Theatre at ISU?
I am from Iowa City, so the University of Iowa was a huge part of my life growing up, but I really wanted something different. I fell in love with the campus when I visited, and I got to tour Fisher Theater. There I saw the set for Climate Change Theatre Action 2019, and I was blown away. As a person who came in interested in scenic design, it was something special. I also loved that the department was small, as I would be able to forge better relationships with my professors.

What are your plans after graduation?
I will hopefully have an assistant directing job lined up for the summer and then keep booking jobs until I feel like I have enough credits to go to grad school.

Any words of wisdom for prospective students?
Try something new. I didn't think I would like directing when I was forced to sign up for Directing I, but I found something that I am really passionate about. I had never acted prior to college, but I found a love in performing. That is something that is great about this department, and something that I would advise everyone to do.