The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre is offered for students who, upon graduation, plan to pursue a specialized career in professional theatre. It provides the student with a very structured and intensive career preparation in either Acting, Stage Management, or Design & Technology. The B.F.A. is also an excellent degree for students who are interested in pursuing graduate studies in theatre. B.F.A. standards are high, both for admission and for continuation in the program. Casting, crew, and design assignments are regulated to serve the artistic growth of students coordinating production experience with classroom exploration.
The Acting specialization offers a sequence of courses in acting, movement, voice, and acting for tv/film. Classwork is augmented with practical production experiences. Drawing upon teachings of Stanislavski based methodologies, the professional acting program offers an organic approach to performance training. The first two years focus on the fundamentals of acting, with an emphasis on the development of imagination, self-awareness, sense memory, improvisation, the ability to execute basic stage tasks, characterization and character development. In addition, the student also receives training in script analysis, voice production/diction, singing, movement and dance. During the junior and senior years, emphasis is placed on studio training/scene study. This practical study, drawn from the total range of dramatic literature, provides the student with performance experiences ranging from the classical to the contemporary, including verse and musical theatre.
Throughout four years of study, the faculty seek to instill within its students the necessity for an in-depth understanding of the acting process and upon the development of personal working methodologies. The senior year is highlighted by the professional internship.
Students in the Stage Management specialization are evaluated annually and must meet professional standards to successfully complete the B.F.A. The senior year is highlighted by the professional internship where work with practicing professionals continues to refine the students' skills and prepare them for stage management positions in the "real world" of the commercial theatre or for further study in graduate school.
The Design & Technology specialization involves practical production experiences in the areas of scenic, costume and lighting design. The first two years of the program focus on practical skills, theory, script analysis, theatre history, dramatic literature, drafting, visual Arts, 2-D and 3-D CAD. Students are evaluated annually and must meet professional standards to successfully complete the BFA Technical Theare/Design. During the junior and senior years emphasis is on specialization in comprehensive technology or design training. Qualified students have the opportunity to assist principal designers and technical directors and may be selected to design and execute designs for main stage productions.
The senior year is highlighted by the professional internship continuing the student's preparation for entry level positions in the commercial theatre or for further study in graduate school. The senior year is also spent in preparing the student's professional portfolio which is essential for those planning to enter the highly competitive job market.