Preview of Courses

Angels in AmericaThe following are courses that have been offered or are usually offered by the Department of Theatre & Communication Arts.

For a comprehensive list of courses, please refer to the current Schedule of Classes or Course Catalog

THEA 50. Theatre Practicum
Participation in two major productions, either as an actor or as a member of the stage crew. Actors must audition and are cast by the director of each production. Possible stage crew assignments include scenery construction and painting, properties preparation, stage lighting preparation, costume construction, sound recording, and serving on backstage crews during rehearsals and performances. Enrolled students should contact the instructor at the very beginning of the semester to arrange their production assignments.

THEA 110. Introduction to Acting
Impulse to action—introduces the student to ideas on/about performance. This introductory course focuses on fundamental stage techniques for the actor: stage geography, body positions, motivated action, timing, stage business, analysis of the script/role, and conditioning. Principles from the teachings of Spolin, Stanislavski, Laban, Bogart, Benedetti, and more will be used for both scene and monologue study

THEA 230. Improvisation
Improvisation is a workshop-based performance laboratory course exploring several dimensions of theatrical self-expression through improvised exercises and situations. This course employs lecture, discussion and performance activities to raise awareness and proficiency in improvisational techniques through dramatic interaction involving imagination and creativity. This course has twice been paired with EDUC 301. Heritage, Identity and Empowerment class, which provides pre-service teachers with the tools to promote cultural relevancy with not only their students of color, but all students.

THEA 240. Introduction to Design & Technology
An introduction to design and technology for the theatre arts. Most of the course focuses on three design specialties: scenery, lighting, and costumes for theatre, with some additional attention given to design for film and television. Concurrent enrollment is required in Theatre 240L, the laboratory component of this course, which will be arranged by the instructor on an individual student basis (usually 2 hours per week). Through the laboratory component, students will participate in the construction of scenery and properties for two productions during the semester.

THEA 260. Chicano/Latino Theatre
Traces the contextual, thematic, and historical influences of Chicano/Latino theatre. Analysis of plays, performances, movements, and theatre troupes that express the experiences of the Chicano/Latino people.

THEA 310. Styles of Acting and Performance
Focuses on a specific style or genre of acting and/or performance such as commedia dell’arte, Comedy of Manners, Farce, Epic Theatre, Realism, Greek, Pinter, Mamet, Shakespeare, Chekhov, Artaud, Grotowski, and more.

THEA 315. Fundamentals of Stage Direction
Introduces students to principles, procedures, and practice of stage direction; script selection, analysis, casting, assembly of a director’s prompt book, research, and rehearsal problems and strategies. Prerequisites: THEA 110 and THEA 240, junior or senior status; instructor permission.

THEA 378. Musical Theatre Workshop 
A workshop exploring the unique combination of skills necessary to work in the musical theatre. Acting, singing and movement/dance techniques will be emphasized. Workshop will culminate in a studio full-scale musical theatre production.

THEA 392. Performing Non-Fiction
This course utilizes performance as a research medium, using solo performance as a means to understand and critique historical and contemporary figures. Students study the figure of their choice, conducting research and creating an original script, which culminates in a one-person performance. Additionally, the elements of performance are examined via the creation of four short solo performance pieces, focusing on light, sound, color, and language. Solo-performances that are well researched and rehearsed will be invited to present at an open performance in the Studio Theatre at the end of the semester.