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Martha Dewey ’81 M.A.R., former adjunct faculty member, dies at 55

Martha Dewey ’81 M.A.R., a former adjunct faculty member in the Religion & the Arts Program of Yale Divinity School and the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, died June 26 in an automobile accident in Dryden, NY, where she made her home.  At the time of her death, Dewey was a member of ISM’s advisory board, “The Friends of the Institute.”

Dewey was the artistic director of the Cornell Interactive Theater Ensemble (CITE) at Cornell University, which she co-founded in 1991.  During her years teaching at YDS and ISM, Dewey developed the “The Lively Word” course with Peter Hawkins and “The Parish Musician” with Robert Baker.

CITE uses theater exercises and audience participation for education in diversity at Cornell and in business and corporate settings. The organization’s stated mission is "to give voice to a variety of points of view within the human experience, in order to facilitate a shift in culture towards greater honesty, trust, respect, and dignity."

As artistic director, Dewey was responsible for creating material for scenarios and training others in interactive theater techniques.

Dewey had also served as guest musical director in Cornell's Department of Theatre, Film and Dance, and as an instructor in speech communication at Ithaca College.

In 2006 Cornell honored Dewey with the Constance E. Cook and Alice H. Cook Award for her contributions to changing the climate for women at Cornell.

Dewey, who was 55 at the time of her death, is survived by her husband, Ken Goetz.

A celebration of Dewey's life was held July 1 at Cornell.  Gifts in her memory can be sent to the Tompkins County SPCA, 1640 Hanshaw Road, Ithaca, NY 14850.