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Academic Programs

Courses of special interest

  • Advanced Design: Lighting
  • Building a Character
  • Creative Dramatics
  • Modern Drama and Theater
  • Fundamentals of Play Directing
  • Special Topics: Laughing Matters

May Travel Classes

Drama and English: Dickens and the London Theater Scene - England

Introduction to the Fine Arts - England

Theater Courses

THEA 1001 Theater Practicum
Guided participation, for theater productions, in performance, stage management, or crew work on sets, lights, props, costumes, or makeup. A minimum of 40 hours required. May be repeated for up to a maximum of 2 course units. (1/4 course unit each.) CR/NC grading.

THEA 1104 Introduction to Theater
A study of plays in performance through both theory and practice. The means and methods of play-making151from scripting to acting to designing to directing151are examined. The history of selected movements and styles in drama and theater is explored to develop an understanding of, and a critical appreciation for, live performance as a unique aesthetic. II Fine Arts

THEA 1124 Introduction to Dramatic Literature
An introduction to the study of dramatic literature. Students will practice critical reading and writing about the major periods and genres of world dramatic literature, from the Greeks to the present. They will also be expected to see 2-3 plays performed locally. Also listed as ENG-1124.

THEA 1214 Preparing to Act
An introductory survey of the theory and practice of acting, with emphasis on action, reaction, and interaction. Performance of scenes and monologues from realistic plays provide opportunities for training in concentration, relaxation, motivation, textual analysis, vocal development, and physical presence. II Fine Arts

THEA 1314 Technical Theater
The study of the basic elements of technical theater, with application to selected examples of dramatic literature. Specifically considered will be fundamentals of set and property construction, lighting and sound technology, costuming and makeup, and backstage organization. Problem-solving techniques for specific play productions will be emphasized. Concurrent registration in THEA 1001 is required. II Fine Arts

THEA 1524 Imagining the Production
Explores theatrical strategies in more than a dozen dramatic texts selected from numerous cultures over the past 2,500 years. Plays will be studied in the context of dramatic theories, theater practicalities, and playwrights’ individual talents. Texts will be treated in class as literary blueprints meant to be interpreted, read aloud, performed, and produced as they were in their own time and could be today. II Fine Arts

THEA 1624 Dramaturgy
Dramaturgy is a process of artistic and critical exploration involving research, criticism, and collaboration on play analysis and production in the American theater. Students learn to bridge the divide between humanities research and theater rehearsals as they focus on artistic interpretation and audience impact. Students edit a theater program, curate an exhibit, compile an actor packet, and prepare a dramaturgical casebook. Students also attend performances and study dramaturgical practices at theaters in the region. II Fine Arts

THEA 2051 Intermediate Ballet
Designed for students with some classical ballet training who are interested in continuing their ballet education. The course will emphasize technique and ballet terminology. Instructor approval is required for registration. There is an additional fee for this course. (1/4 course unit.) May be repeated for credit. CR/NC grading.

THEA 2204 Spectator as Critic
Explores creative writing as it pertains to the theatrical critique, specifically addressing the role of theater critic as a neutral party, the methodology and rhetorical strategies employed, the importance of crafting a thorough and representative review, the psychological impact of a good or bad review on a potential audience member, the practical effects of a review on a company or a production, the timing of a review, and the opportunities for publication (both in print and digital media). Student will examine and dissect contemporary theatrical reviews, research prominent critics, and watch 3-4 productions, crafting thoughtful and engaging reviews for each. II Fine Arts

THEA 2224 Building a Character
An advanced acting course, designed to develop the actor’s ability in applying style, tempo, and originality toward the creation of a character on stage. Performance of scenes and monologues selected primarily from classical plays offer challenges in textual interpretation and gestural emphasis, vocal expression, and physical embodiment. Prerequisite: A full-unit Fine Arts course. IV

THEA 2234 Creative Dramatics
The study of improvisational theater as a means to explore dramatic structure, character attributes, themes, language, sounds, and physicalization. This course is designed to improve acting skills, enhance imagination, and encourage collaboration. Active participation essential. Public performances will occur throughout term. No prior acting experience necessary. Prerequisite: A full-unit course in Fine Arts. IV

THEA 2292 Special Topics in Theater
An in-depth study of a particular topic in drama and theater, and the theories and methods used to study that topic. Possible subjects include genre studies; musical theater; political theater; Eastern Theater forms; theatrical make-up and mask-making; costume history; and children’s theater. (1/2 course unit.) Prerequisite: A full-unit course in Fine Arts.

THEA 2294 Special Topics in Theater
An in-depth study of a particular topic in drama and theater, and the theories and methods used to study that topic. Possible subjects include genre studies; musical theater; political theater; Eastern Theater forms; theatrical make-up and mask-making; costume history; and children’s theater. Prerequisite: a full unit course in Fine Arts. IV

THEA 2324 Theater Design
Basic principles and practices of designing for the stage, including the scenic, lighting, and costume elements of a theatrical production. Emphasis placed on design procedures, research techniques and materials, period styles, design history, drafting and rendering skills, and application of design concepts to specific plays. Concurrent registration in THEA 1001 is required. Prerequisite: A full-unit Fine Arts course. IV

THEA 2364 World Design: Asian Scenic
Study of the visual language and the cultural and critical aesthetic of world approaches to scenic design. The specific focus on Asia will guide students through an in-depth exploration of the history, values, beliefs, artistic influences, and contemporary mindset of Japanese, Indonesian, Chinese, and Indian cultures. Students will broaden their knowledge of scenic design practices, gain awareness of aesthetic cultural heritage, and expand their understanding of what is viewed as beautiful. Prerequisite: THEA 1104. III A or IV

THEA 3051 Advanced Ballet
Designed for students who have had significant classical ballet training. The course will fine-tune existing technique, adding speed, complexity, and variations. Instructor approval is required for registration. There is an additional fee for this course. (1/4 course unit.) May be repeated for credit. CR/NC grading.

THEA 3072 Special Projects in Theater Arts
Individual projects in performance, design, technical production, or theater history designed to permit the qualified student to explore more thoroughly specific problems in a given area. (1/2 course unit.) May be repeated for credit up to a maximum of 2 course units between 3072 and 3074. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

THEA 3074 Special Projects in Theater Arts
Individual projects in performance, design, technical production, or theater history designed to permit the qualified student to explore more thoroughly specific problems in a given area. (1 course unit.) May be repeated for credit up to a maximum of 2 course units between 3072 and 3074. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

THEA 3244 Creating a Role
An advanced-level course in acting. Through selected examples, students will develop acting techniques suitable for performing various styles and genres, such as Greek tragedy, realism, high comedy, farce, Brechtian epic theater, musical theater, theater of the absurd, and acting for the camera. Resume and audition material preparation will also be stressed, as well as performance at regular intervals. Prerequisite: THEA 2224. May be repeated once for credit. IV

THEA 3314 Advanced Design
Advanced level design course with intensive study of a specific area of theatrical design, selected from one of the following areas: scenic, lighting, costume, or makeup. May be repeated for credit in different design area. Specific area offered on a rotating basis and/or upon student request and faculty availability. Prerequisites: THEA 2324 and permission of instructor. IV

THEA 3324 Shakespeare I
An intensive study of 8-10 plays drawn from the first half of Shakespeare’s career. Will deal with selected histories, comedies, and tragedies up to about 1600. Prerequisite: ENG 2904 or permission of instructor. Also listed as ENG 3324. IV; V

THEA 3334 Shakespeare II
An intensive study of at least 10 plays from the second half of Shakespeare’s career. Will deal with the problem comedies, mature tragedies, and tragicomedies. Prerequisites: ENG 2904 or permission of instructor. Also listed as ENG 3334. IV; V

THEA 3414 Fundamentals of Play Directing
The basic elements of directing for a proscenium theater, including play analysis for directors, techniques for actor development, and practical play production. Extensive classroom exercises for training in composition, picturization, movement, design, pacing, and casting, concluding with a public performance of a short scene. Prerequisites: DRA 1214 and 1314. IV

THEA 3424 Advanced Directing
Advanced elements of directing, with emphasis on staging for various actor-audience spatial arrangements, directing in period styles and classical genres, and developing effective rehearsal techniques, production schedules, and organizational collaborations. Prerequisites: THEA 3414 and permission of instructor. IV

THEA 3514 Modern Drama and Theater
A survey of modern dramatic literature and patterns in theater history during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Selected plays, staging styles, acting techniques, design aspects, and theatrical theory and criticism will be explored within cultural and historical contexts. Prerequisite: A full-unit Theater course. IV; V

THEA 3524 Classical Drama and Theater
A survey of classical dramatic literature and patterns in theater history from the fifth-century Greek era to the nineteenth century. Selected plays, staging styles, acting techniques, design aspects, and theatrical theory and criticism will be explored within cultural and historical contexts. Prerequisite: A full-unit Theater course. IV; V

THEA 3534 Playwriting
A practical course in writing a one-act play. Beginning with a scenario or outline of events, through the various drafts and rewrites, and concluding with a final version which will be given a public reading, each playwright will not only experience the process of writing a producible script, but also learn the aesthetic principles guiding the making of dramatic literature. Prerequisite: Any theater course. IV

THEA 4004 Senior Seminar
Capstone course in theater for intensive and independent study (with faculty supervision) of a major area of theater, such as playwriting, acting, directing, designing, dramaturgy, or research, culminating in a public performance as appropriate to subject. Prerequisite: Senior status. IV

THEA 4204 Internship in Theater
Internship with professional profit or nonprofit theater company. Possible areas of experience include theater management (box office, marketing, fund-raising), acting, stagecraft, lighting or costume construction, and/or crews. (1 course unit.) CR/NC grading. Prerequisites: DRA 1314, 3414, or junior or senior standing and permission of instructor.

THEA 4208 Internship in Theater
Internship with professional profit or nonprofit theater company. Possible areas of experience include theater management (box office, marketing, fund-raising), acting, stagecraft, lighting or costume construction, and/or crews. (2 course units.) CR/NC grading. Prerequisites: DRA 1314, 3414, or junior or senior standing and permission of instructor.

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