As a theatre major or minor at Truman, you work side-by-side with seasoned professionals, learning by doing — students perform, design, direct, choreograph, construct, circuit, paint, sew, write plays, research and teach. And our academic coursework gives you an edge when you strike out on your own.
Unlike other schools, our freshmen step onstage their very first semester. Whether your passion is acting under the lights or tech work behind the scenes, learn it all by working side-by-side with professors on mainstage productions in our state-of-the-art Severns Theatre and smaller shows in the more intimate Black Box Theatre. Or pursue your own ideas through our tradition of student-directed (and often student-written) lab shows and one-acts. No matter what, you’ll be doing the performing, building the scenery, sewing the costumes and managing all the fine details of each production.
An Unusually Thorough Approach
Along with studio/practical courses in acting, design, tech, and directing, you will spend three semesters taking rigorous academic courses tracing both the literature and history of western theatre from the ancient Greeks to the America’s current Postmodern avant-garde. Each major period is treated within the context of specific cultural dynamics including study of anthropological theory, art and music history, political theory and social history.
You will come away with a clear sense of how theatre reflects its time and place, why theatre is central to an understanding of a given culture or period, and the varied functions and effects of theatre on a community . . . how theatre engages the liberal arts across all disciplines.
Small Classes & Individual Attention
Our intimate program ensures you’ll be working one-on-one with full-time professors, and all our professors have a broad range of professional and experience from theaters across the country and terminal degrees in their professions. There are several opportunities to work with faculty outside the classroom to gain work experience with opportunities ranging from internships in scenery, costuming and sound, to publicity and promotions, to technical internships in Baldwin Auditorium serving Truman’s Kohlenberg Lyceum Series, which brings cultural events to campus from all around the world.
Our Graduates Succeed
By graduation, you will have a portfolio that includes assessment exams, samples of your best writings for a variety of courses, video records of your acting performances, and sketches and working drafts for costume, stage and lighting designs — everything you need to give you an edge over your peers when starting your career.
None of our graduates are currently unemployed. In addition to the fields of acting and technical theatre, as well as theatre management, Truman Theatre graduates have also successfully pursued careers in communication, law, marketing, construction, sales, and small-business management.
May 1, 2018
The Theatre Department’s play direction class will present the work of six new directors in one-act plays at 8 p.m. May 3-4 in the Ophelia Parrish Hall James G. Severns Theatre. The class, taught by assistant professor David Charles Goyette, directs plays from some of the best playwrights from around the country as a final […]
April 13, 2018
Watch this trailer for a look at some behind-the-scenes action for “She Stoops to Conquer,” the final mainstage production for the Theatre Department’s 2017-2018 season. The show runs from April 18-21 in the James G. Severns Theater. Tickets are $5 and are available at the Box Office in the Ophelia Parrish Building/Fine Arts Center.