Theatre

Ben Moore (department head)

Theatre training expands the capabilities of the human body and imagination, developing capacities for persistence, invention, and communication. Theatre majors learn self-confidence and refine their ability to conceive and enact new ideas, practices and solutions through the performative body. Collaborative performances and studio environments stimulate active learning, and promote body and mind development toward reflecting what it means to be human. This approach equips students with skills for dealing with a complex world. Theatre majors pursue graduate and professional studies, certification, and employment in: acting, design, directing, freelance performing, freelance designing, international arts education, theatre education, movement for actors, performance, and performance art.

Required for a major: 33 hours including THE 100/DAN 100 (6 times), THE 105, 127, 300, 351, 352; one from THE 103 or 104; two 200 level courses; one 300 level course. Writing requirement completed with THE 352.

Correlative requirements: one course from DAN 101, 105, 130, or DAN 264.

Theatre Synthesis: During the sophomore year a major will develop a written reflection outlining their previous work in the performing arts and develop possible pathways for future directions leading toward their senior project.

Required for a minor: THE 100/DAN 100 (three times); THE 103 or 104; THE 105, 127, THE 300/DAN 300, and one 4-credit elective selected from courses in theatre or dance.

Theatre Management Concentration: To complete the theatre management concentration a student is required to complete a major in theatre and a minor in management, or a major in management and a minor in theatre.

Theatre Courses

THE 100 Production Practicum

  • 0 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

An intensive experiental research ensemble devoted to crafting, creating, developing, and producing a faculty-directed theatre and/or dance event. Students in this course will be involved in research and theoretical discussion supporting active involvement in a collaborative process of performance, design and production management, such as director/designer assistant; set construction; lighting, sound, costume, properties, make-up/hair, and stage management. Theatre majors must complete six Production Practicums, while minors must complete three. Course may be repeated an unlimited number of times. Enrollment by audition or consent of instructor.

THE 103 Art of Illusion:Costuming and Makeup

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

This course is designed to introduce students to the craft and skills used in creating costumes and applying wigs and makeup for theatrical productions. Theatre is a collaborative art form with a variety of artists functioning together to create a single work. This course will explore the connection between the designer and the artist/craftsperson. Through field trips, readings, and experiential lab work students will develop, design, create and practice the art and craft of costume and wig and makeup skills. A field trip to a theatre production and an art museum will be a part of this course.

THE 104 Art of Illusion:Scenery and Properties

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

This course is designed to introduce students to the craft and skills used in creating scenic and properties illusions often found in theatre. Theatre is a collaborative art form with a variety of artists functioning together to create a single work. This course will explore the connection between the designer and the artist/craftsperson. Through field trips, readings, and experiential lab work students will develop, design, create and practice the art and craft of scenic and property illusionary skills. A field trip to a theatre production and an art museum will be a part of this course.

THE 105 Acting I:Text in Performance

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

An introduction to performance concepts and skills utilizing text as a beginning point for the performance experience. The course will include analysis and performance of diverse texts through solo and group work, incorporating elements of movement, spoken text, and music. Letters, novels, poems, plays, biographies, journals, and newspapers are examples of potential performance texts. No experience in any performing area is assumed.

THE 127 Design I: Visual Principles

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

A study of the relationship between the performer, the elements of art, and the principles of design. Through a wide variety of hands-on exercises, students will explore how design can enhance the performer's ability to express thoughts, emotions, and ideas. Areas of study will include the designer's vocabulary and means of expression; the connection between design, the performer, and the audience; and methods of articulating visually to various audiences.

THE 200 Stagecraft Practicum

  • 1 hour

This course introduces students to the crafts of stage technology, applying them to the fields of theatre and dance. Students in this course will be assigned to work in areas of scenery, properties, costuming, makeup, lighting, and sound. Offered every semester on a credit/no credit basis. May be repeated.

THE 203 Costume History

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Historical, Human Expression

A survey of the history of clothing from Mesopotamia to the present. Through lecture and discussion the course examines visual documentation of clothing, terminology and vocabulary related to clothing and the socio-political events that influence its development. Students will be asked to study the details of each era by sketching existing visual documentation of articles of clothing. Regular quizzes will be given throughout the semester and a research paper on a topic of the students choice will be assigned.

THE 204 Lighting Design

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

A study of lighting for the performing arts and an introduction to and practice in theatrical stage lighting. Coursework will cover the function of light in design; lighting equipment and terminology; communication graphics through practical laboratory explorations. Application of principles for performance events and contemporary lighting problems will be studied through extensive hands-on applications.

THE 205 Acting: Improvisation, Ensemble, and Clown

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression
  • Prerequisites: Take THE-105.

Improvisation teaches actors to perform both as creative individuals and as part of an ensemble. Students in this course will learn to collaborate through exercises that encourage them to work as a piece of a whole and without the benefit of a script. Furthermore, this class will explore the creative potential and emotional flexibility offered by Clown. Students will devise solo and group acts that deepen their understanding of the spirit of clown. By learning to see the world from the unique perspective of a Clown, students will learn about the power of imagination and their ability to emotionally invest in the fantastic. Offered alternate years.

THE 206 Graphic Design I

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

This course introduces students to the use of raster and vector graphics applications as advanced art-making tools. Students will produce static 2-dimensional works of art that simultaneously explore 2-D design concepts and the cognitive processes of software learning. (Same as ART 206)

THE 207 Contemporary Plays

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts

Focusing mainly on plays authored in the past 50 years, the works of American and British playwrights will comprise about a third of the reading with the remaining plays from around the globe with particular emphasis on non-European playwrights. Introduction to production analysis (how a play works in the theatre) and attention to student writing.

THE 222 Acting: Shakespeare

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts
  • Prerequisites: THE 105

Acting Shakespeare begins with the premise that a deeper understanding of Shakespeare's works is reached in performing them. This course will place an emphasis on freeing the voice for use as a primary vehicle for conveying meaning. Students will develop tools for analyzing, speaking and embodying Shakespeare's text. Students will analyze and perform scenes while investigating the plays from which they are selected. Learning the structure of the text will enable students to use it as a springboard for action, emotion, and character.

THE 300 Production Studio

  • 1 hour
  • Prerequisites: Junior status

An experiential collaborative component for the theatre/dance majors and minors. Set within a faculty directed project or production, the student participates in research, dialogue and the underpinnings of producing work. (Same as DAN 300)

THE 305 Acting: Special Topics

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression
  • Prerequisites: THE 105

A studio course that offers rotating topics exploring different approaches to acting. Topics may include performing for musical theatre, Meisner technique, advanced scene study, rough theatre practices, audition technique, and others. Each topic will include elements of research, writing, and performance. This course may be repeated up to three times for credit under different topics.

THE 327 Design Ii: Scenography

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression
  • Prerequisites: THE 127

An exploratory study of performance design: scenery, costuming, sound, and/or lighting. Coursework will develop a student's individual approach to design and practical problem-solving for live performance with an emphasis on the function of design and aesthetics for the performing arts. Students enrolled will have bi-weekly portfolio meetings for an exchange of ideas in the field of design for live performance. Lab hours arranged.

THE 351 Theatre History I

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts, Historical

A study of major developments in the theatre - playwriting, acting, staging, architecture - from their roots through the 1850's, with reading of numerous representative plays. A study of theatre around the world from primitive rituals to classical Greek and Roman, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and African theatre and native performance. The plays, period developments, and movements studies will provide foundation for discussion of how modern readers and audiences can have a meaningful encounter with these ancient works.

THE 352 Theatre History II

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Historical, Human Expression—Primary Texts

A study of the development of the modern theatre, its drama, and its stage crafts, from 1850 through the present, with reading of numerous representative plays. Attention is paid to the major social changes in relevant world cultures that lead to developments in performance.

THE 360 Directing

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression

A study of the theories and practices related to directing for the theatre. Coursework will include emphasis on communication principles and script analysis as well as laboratory experiences in directing.

THE 490 Senior Seminar

  • 2 hours

An intensive, collabroative study of selected theories, performance artist(s), writer(s), selected period, or movement. The seminar will often intersect the disciplines of theatre and dance. The course format rests upon student-led discussion and development of an artist's manifesto, both of which will be used to focus and develop the senior project proposal.

THE 491 Senior Project

  • 2 hours
  • Prerequisites: THE 490 and senior standing

Students will complete an individualized or collaborative senior project. The project will include a written artist's statement, process documentation, post-project reflection/critique, and will be presented publicly. Students will orally defend their project before the department following the public presentation.