Courses

Whether you’re happiest onstage, backstage, or in the classroom, the Department of Theatre & Dance offers something you'll love.

Prof. LaRonika Thomas
TTh 11:30am-12:45pm

This theatre history course will examine the development of (primarily) Western drama against a backdrop of historical and social change. Students will read a variety of plays and discuss theatre history, dramatic theory, and criticism representing the major currents in (primarily) Western theatre from its origins to the 18th century CE. We will frequently employ one or more of the following “lenses” or viewpoints to focus our lectures and discussions: the physical theatre (how the material artifacts of theater—buildings, documents, etc.—tell the story of theatre history and influence dramaturgy); the social theatre (how the theatre relates to its social context, including consideration of the audience); and the performing theatre (the plays themselves and how they were/are performed). Students will be encouraged to draw connections between the material we cover in this course and the many intellectual and aesthetic parallels to be found in contemporaneous trends in history, philosophy, literature, and the arts.

Prof. Brendon Fox
TTh 1:00-2:15pm

This course examines some of Shakespeare's best known earlier plays (those written before the death of Queen Elizabeth in 1603) both in the context of early modern English culture and as play scripts/performances. Using films and live productions (when available) it considers the plays as they have been and could be interpreted for performance. This course counts toward the history/theory/lit requirement of the Theatre major.

Profs. Dale Daigle & Polly Sommerfeld
MWF 10:30-11:20am or 12:30-1:20pm

Analysis and application of basic acting techniques with a concentration on scene study and character analysis.

Prof. Dale Daigle
Th 2:30-5:00pm

Study of the basic principles and practices of directing, including interpretation, structural analysis, and investigation of basic staging techniques.

MWF 1:30-2:20pm

This course replaces THE241, offering a deeper exploration of the tangible theatrical design disciplines (scenery, costumes, and properties). The course will include both discussion and hands-on instruction, with an emphasis on cross-disciplinary skills such as close reading (of texts and images), research, and clear communication (written, visual, and aural). Students will learn to approach theatrical questions from a variety of angles and will develop a basic understanding of how design elements function theatrically and how they fit together. This course will count in place of THE241 (Intro Design) for THE/CMS majors & minors.

MWF 11:30am-12:20pm

This course provides a thorough exploration of the roles and duties of the theatrical stage manager, from pre-production through closing night and beyond. Using a mix of readings, discussion, paperwork assignments, and lab activities, students develop both hard skills (such as document design, scheduling, and preparedness) and soft skills (such as communication, leadership, management, and collaboration). By the end of the semester, students will be well prepared to stage manage a fully produced show. This course has no curricular prerequisite, but requires a baseline understanding of the rehearsal and production process; accordingly, enrolled students should have some experience working in the theatre (as an actor, designer, crew member, etc.).

Prof. Brendon Fox
MW 2:30-3:45pm

For hundreds of years, women playwrights have created indelible characters and dramatic situations that provide rich opportunities for performance. This class will explore the skills of acting using plays covering a wide variety of styles, including Restoration Comedy writer Aphra Behn and contemporary feminist icon Caryl Churchill, among others. Throughout the semester we’ll employ imagination, research, and creativity to unlock issues of gender, power, and human relationships onstage. Prerequisites: THE211 (Intro Acting), or THE182 (departmental performance experience), or permission of the instructor.

 

Fall 2021 Dance Courses

Guest Prof. Raina Lucas
TTh 2:30-3:45pm

Dance in Culture and Society is an introduction to the study of dance in the academy. This survey course will introduce students to dance as both an aesthetic and cultural experience. The aim is to present the breadth of the field, specifically where dance happens, the diverse functions it serves, and ways of making meaning of the dance experience. Through movement laboratories, readings, videos, observations, and discussions students will explore the dance discipline.

Guest Prof. Raina Lucas
TTh 1:00-2:15pm

Beginning Modern Dance is an introduction to basic principles of modern dance as a creative art form. Special emphasis is placed on body awareness, alignment, and artistic expression. The class structure includes a full body warm-up, center movement studies, traveling sequences and an extended modern dance phrase made up of both choreography and improvisation. Readings, videos, reflective and analytical writing, and live performance will contextualize the movement practice.

Spring 2021 Theatre Courses

(Prof. Brendon Fox)

This theatre history course will examine the development of (primarily) Western drama against a backdrop of historical and social change. Students will read a variety of plays and discuss theatre history, dramatic theory, and criticism representing the major currents in (primarily) Western theatre from the 18th century to 1992. We will frequently employ one or more of the following “lenses” or viewpoints to focus our lectures and discussions: the physical theatre (how the material artifacts of theater—buildings, documents, etc.—tell the story of theatre history and influence dramaturgy); the social theatre (how the theatre relates to its social context, including consideration of the audience); and the performing theatre (the plays themselves and how they were/are performed). Students will be encouraged to draw connections between the material we cover in this course and the many intellectual and aesthetic parallels to be found in contemporaneous trends in history, philosophy, literature, and the arts. Theatre Majors and Minors may not take this class pass/fail or as an audit.

(Prof. Brendon Fox)

This course examines some of Shakespeare's best known later plays (those written after the death of Queen Elizabeth in 1603) both in the context of early modern English culture and as play scripts/performances. Using films and live productions (when available) it considers the plays as they have been and could be interpreted for performance. This course counts toward the history/theory/lit requirement of the Theatre major.

(Profs. Dale Daigle & Polly Sommerfeld)

Analysis and application of basic acting techniques with a concentration on scene study and character analysis.

(Prof. Hannah D'Elia)

Investigation of methods and materials used in the theatrical production process. Laboratory hours will be required. This course is designed primarily for those who plan to participate in future theatrical productions. This course (particularly its lab hour requirement) will be modified for remote instruction.

(Prof. Ben Tilghman)

This course explores various aspects of leadership, management, and entrepreneurship for the visual and performing arts. Students will learn how arts organizations define themselves, make decisions, and plan for the future. Topics may include: leadership & governance, mission & strategy, program planning & evaluation, intellectual property & contracting, marketing & public relations, and/or budgeting & fundraising. This course has no curricular prerequisite, but requires a baseline interest in and understanding of the arts.

(Prof. Dale Daigle)

Acting for the Camera applies and builds upon the fundamentals established in Introduction to Acting. Performance techniques and methods relevant to camera work will be explored. Students will work on film and TV scripts and will learn the technical and emotional adjustments required for working in front of a camera. Prerequisite: THE211 or permission of the instructor. 

This course offers a broad look at all aspects of theatrical design, including scenery, properties, costume, lighting, and sound, with an emphasis on interdisciplinary skills such as close reading (of texts and images), research and clear communication (written, visual and aural). Students will learn to approach theatrical questions from a variety of angles, and will develop a basic understanding of all design elements and how they fit together. This course will have a required lab section that will be used only a few times over the semester.

 (Prof. Hannah D'Elia)

This course will provide students with a greater understanding of the various behind-the-scenes roles that support a theatrical production. Over the semester, students will watch, read, and listen to material covering many different perspectives on the production process. During that time they will have opportunities to engage with industry professionals and discuss current theatre practices. For Theatre & Dance majors/minors, this course can replace 1 semester of THE400 or any THE/DAN Practicum course. 2 credits, graded. No prerequisite; open to THE/DAN majors & minors, or to others with permission of the instructor.

Spring 2021 Dance Courses

(Guest Prof. Raina Lucas)

Intermediate Ballet is a progression of Beginning Ballet. Special emphasis will be placed on working in optimal alignment, building both strength and flexibility, and negotiating stability and mobility. Intermediate Ballet emphasizes clarity of line, movement efficiency, range of motion, and artistry. Readings, videos, reflective and analytical writing, and live performance will contextualize the in-class work.

(Prof. Ben Tilghman)

This course explores various aspects of leadership, management, and entrepreneurship for the visual and performing arts. Students will learn how arts organizations define themselves, make decisions, and plan for the future. Topics may include: leadership & governance, mission & strategy, program planning & evaluation, intellectual property & contracting, marketing & public relations, and/or budgeting & fundraising. This course has no curricular prerequisite, but requires a baseline interest in and understanding of the arts.

Dance Portfolio culminates the dance minor. Students submit a digital portfolio of their work for faculty review. Upon declaring a dance minor, students schedule a meeting with the dance minor director to discuss the dance portfolio submission guidelines. Students maintain chronological digital files of their artistic work including choreographic, performance, teaching, and footage and photos. In addition to compiling work samples from class work and outside departmental activities, students will write an Artist Statement, Teaching Philosophy, and Dance Resume. Dance Portfolio is done as an independent study with 4 scheduled meetings with the dance minor director during the spring semester of senior year.

 (Prof. Hannah D'Elia)

This course will provide students with a greater understanding of the various behind-the-scenes roles that support a theatrical production. Over the semester, students will watch, read, and listen to material covering many different perspectives on the production process. During that time they will have opportunities to engage with industry professionals and discuss current theatre practices. For Theatre & Dance majors/minors, this course can replace 1 semester of THE400 or any THE/DAN Practicum course. 2 credits, graded. No prerequisite; open to THE/DAN majors & minors, or to others with permission of the instructor.  

 

 

Major Barbara

Looking for something else?

The catalog contains a full list of recurring Theatre & Dance courses.

COLLEGE CATALOG