The immortal drama of Althea Hunt

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November 1, 2013

3:17 AM

Some of the ghosts on campus at the College of William and Mary are more involved in extracurricular affairs than you’d expect. One specter in particular isn’t quite ready for her final curtain call.

Meet Dr. Althea Hunt, professor of English and director of the College’s theatre department for over 30 years.

The College has not forgotten Dr. Hunt’s dedication to the College. Hunt Hall — located behind the Campus Center and across the street from Colonial Williamsburg — is named in her honor.

Having served as the director of the theatre department from 1926 to 1957, Dr. Hunt’s spirit recognizes the amount of work required to put on an excellent performance. Supposedly, Dr. Hunt still makes her opinions on current productions at the College known.

According to legend, Dr. Hunt will attend rehearsal, sit in the balcony of the theater, and leave once she is satisfied with the students’ performances. Students in the theatre department are assured that Dr. Hunt’s presence is only an indication of a job well done — one that meets her ghostly standards.

“Rumor has is  she’s a really nice ghost who hangs around [Phi Beta Kappa Hall], complimenting students on arts-related work, playing with lights, moving costumes to the main auditorium, singing, things like this,” Adam Stackhouse ’04 said by email.

Dr. Hunt’s presence does not frighten students or faculty members. Most people involved with College theatre even appreciate a little paranormal help from her.

So, if you’re ever rehearsing in PBK late at night, don’t be alarmed if you hear a faint applause from the back of the theater after your scene — Dr. Hunt may just want you to give her an encore.

Who says that the College of William and Mary’s student body has to be exclusively corporeal? Read more about campus’s ghostly residents here.   

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