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Theatre

Bachelor of Arts in Theatre

The major in theatre is designed to provide students with a solid foundation in the craft and art of theatre through both theoretical and practical principles. The philosophy of the Theatre Department stresses the relationship between a liberal arts education and possible career paths in the theatre or further studies in graduate programs. The fall and spring Mainstage Theatre productions are linked to the College’s curriculum, providing a learning laboratory in which students have the opportunity to explore educational themes while producing high caliber theatre performances.

Requirements to Major in Theatre

A. Theatre Core Courses (four credits unless otherwise indicated)

  • TH 1310 – Scenery Construction (2cr)
  • TH 1320 – Stage Lighting (2cr)
  • TH 1211 – Acting One (for Majors and Minors) (2cr)
  • TH 1220 – Production Management (2cr)
  • TH 2210 – Character Development (2cr)
  • TH 2520 – Speech for the Performer (2cr)
  • TH 2230 – Movement for the Performer
  • TH 2430 – Survey of Western Drama
  • TH 3420 – Play Analysis
  • TH 3240 – Directing
  • TH 3320 – The Design Process (2cr)
  • TH/EN 3950 – Shakespeare
  • TH 4210 – Advanced Acting (2cr)
  • TH 4220 – Advanced Technical Seminar (2cr)
  • TH 2440 – Production Analysis
  • TH 4920 – Summer Professional Immersion Experience (8cr) or Eight (8) additional credits of advanced courses

B. Distribution Courses and Electives 

Requirements to Minor in Theatre

  • TH 1310 – Scenery Construction (2cr)
  • TH 1320 – Stage Lighting (2cr)
  • TH 1211 – Acting One (for Majors and Minors) (2cr)
  • TH 1220 – Production Management (2cr)
  • TH 3420 – Play Analysis

Choose one of the following:

  • TH 2230 – Movement for the Performer
  • TH 3240 – Directing

Choose one of the following:

  • TH 2430 – Survey of Western Drama
  • TH/EN 3950 – Shakespeare

Choose one of the following:

  • TH 2210 – Character Development (2cr)
  • TH 3320 – The Design Process (2cr) 

Course Descriptions

**All undergraduate courses are 4 credits unless otherwise noted.

TH 1210 Acting Fundamentals (for non-majors)

An introduction to the use and development of the fundamental tools of the actor through lectures, discussions, critical analysis, and practice, with an emphasis on acting exercises, improvisation, monologues and scene study. Offered every fall.

TH 1310 Seminar in Technical Theatre: Scenery

A concentrated course on the planning, methodology and construction of scenery for the theatre. Specific areas of study will include reading and interpreting shop drawings, basic woodworking tool use, and fundamental techniques of scenery construction. Practical application through crew work on departmental productions is stressed and required. Offered during the first seven weeks of every fall. (2cr) 

TH 1320 Seminar in Technical Theatre: Stage Lighting

A concentrated course on modern stage lighting principles and practice. Specific areas of study include electrical theory and safety, stage lighting instruments, and distribution control. Practical application through crew work on departmental productions is stressed and required. Offered during the second seven weeks of every fall. (2cr)

TH 1211 Acting One – For Majors and Minors

This course is designed for the student who has a background in Acting. Emphasis is placed on taking this student deeper into the realm of playing which is at the heart of all acting. Students will participate in acting exercises, improvisation, monologues and scene study. Offered during the first seven weeks of every spring. (2cr) 

TH 1220 Production Management

Designed to provide students with a basic understanding of the process of theatrical production from conception to execution and evaluation. Particular emphasis is placed on the hierarchy and careers of the theatre, the process of designers, directors and actors and more detailed experience with the elements of stage management. Offered during the second seven weeks of every spring. (2cr) 

TH 2010 Theatre Lab

Members of this class will become involved in a main stage or student-directed production in a significant acting, directing or technical role. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor required. This course requires an average of three (1 credit) to twelve (4 credits) hours per week of production participation. May be repeated for credit. Offered every semester. Variable credit (1-4).

TH 2210 Character Development   

An acting course that emphasizes character development through role and scene analysis. Particular emphasis is placed on the scoring of the role using a variety of exercises and journal work. Prerequisites: TH 1210 or TH 1211. Offered the first seven weeks of every fall. (2cr) 

TH 2230 Movement for the Performer

A theatrically-oriented dance course for the performer. This course explores alternative movement forms through the use of music, masks, properties and furniture. Students participate in exercises and develop presentations in an effort to experience varying and innovative techniques through which the performer can communicate. Offered every fall. 

TH 2430 Survey of Western Drama

A text-centered investigation of drama, the physical theatre, and modes of production from the ancient Greeks to the 21st century. Offered every spring. 

TH 2440 Production Analysis

Designed to provide students with a richer understanding of the process of theatrical production from conception to execution and analysis. This course focuses on the Theatre Department Mainstage production. Through readings, discussions, and lecture, students will examine the text of the play itself as well as other plays by that particular author. We will also examine the historical, theoretical and social context surrounding the text. Particular emphasis will be on creating connections between the production and the textual and historical material. For example: A production of Mother Courage and Her Children would result in a course that focuses on that play, other representative plays by Bertolt Brecht and his theories on Epic Theatre. Offered every fall. May be repeated for credit. 

TH 2520 Speech for the Performer

A concentrated course that continues the work of Character Development with particular emphasis on speech and voice work. The fundamentals of voice work including relaxation, alignment, breath awareness, and the strengthening of resonance and tone will be explored. Students will apply voice work to various classical and contemporary texts. Offered the second seven weeks of every fall. (2cr) 

TH 3240 Directing

The goal of this course is to develop and discover an understanding of the responsibilities, resources and process of the theatrical artist known as the director through lecture, discussion and class exercise. This hands-on creative approach will explore the journey of the director from casting to production through exercises and scene work. Offered every spring. 

TH 3320 The Design Process

An exploration of the process of theatrical production design (scenery, lighting, and costumes). Specific areas of study include design history, theory, and script analysis. Offered the first seven weeks of every spring. (2cr) 

TH 3420 Play Analysis

An in-depth examination of script analysis utilizing plays representative of a variety of genres and time periods. We will utilize a detailed process of evaluating a plays structure and content through the examination of triggers and heaps, stasis and intrusion, obstacle and conflict, forwards, character, images, and themes. Offered every fall. 

TH 3610 Seminar in Playwriting

An introduction to playwriting, where students explore the fundamentals of character, action, conflict and structure through writing exercises. Students continuously revise their work, hear it aloud, and critique the work of their peers. Though the work consists primarily of writing, students also analyze the dramatic structure of both new and classic plays. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor required. Offered every fall. 

TH 3950 (EN 3950) Shakespeare

Studies in the tragedies, comedies, history, and problem plays of William Shakespeare from the perspectives of both literature and theatre, with an emphasis on the performance of the literary work. Offered every other fall. 

TH 3990 Topics in Theatre

A changing selection of courses designed to offer a variety of subjects in theatre. This course may be repeated for credit for different topics. Topics to be determined by the theatre faculty. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor required. Offered upon sufficient demand. Variable credit (2-4).

TH 4210 Advanced Acting

Focused studies of a range of acting forms and techniques. Courses may include: Oral Interpretation of Literature, Acting for Film and Video and Period Styles. Prerequisite: TH 3210. Offered every spring. May be repeated for credit with different topics. (2cr) 

TH 4220 Advanced Technical Seminar

Focused studies of a range of technical topics. Courses may include: Advanced Stage Lighting, Computer Aided Drafting for the Theatre. Prerequisite: TH 1310 and TH 1320. Offered every spring. May be repeated for credit with different topics. (2cr) 

TH 4810 Directed Study in Theatre

Course of study to be arranged between faculty and student in the field of Theatre. Prerequisites and Notes: Permission of instructor required. Contract required. May be repeated for credit. Variable credit (1–4).

TH 4830 Independent Study in Theatre

This course involves study in an area of theatre done independently by a student under supervision of a faculty sponsor. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor required. Contract required. Variable credit (1–4). 

TH 4910 Internship in Theatre

The student serves as a theatre intern with an appropriate theatre company. Potential interns must meet the college wide internship requirements and must be approved by the theatre faculty. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor and contract required. Variable credit (1–15). 

TH 4920 Summer Professional Immersion Experience

Students will be fully involved in all aspects of a production of the Open Door Theatre. Students will work alongside and with a professional company and culminating course work will result in an acting showcase or technical portfolio to be critiqued by company members. Offered every summer. (8cr)