The Theater & Dance Department offers students a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the history, literature and production of performance. Our mission is to impart liberal arts values by fostering creative expression, stimulating critical and imaginative thinking, and increasing cultural literacy through study in a spectrum of studio, laboratory and discussion-centered courses. The program of study includes frequent opportunities for practical experience in theater and dance, including creative research and production opportunities and service learning projects. Undergraduate students in theater and dance also enjoy opportunities to increase their abilities in self-reflection, multicultural sensitivity, and the comparison of social values and ethical systems; in short, they learn how to be productive citizens and professional leaders through their scholarly and applied experiences. The department also seeks to entertain and to educate the larger community through its rigorous production schedule of plays, dance concerts, touring artists, and residency workshops with guest artists.
Consistent with the College’s mission, the major in Theater & Dance is a liberal arts, not a pre-professional, degree. It is, however, a major that will adequately prepare particularly interested and talented students for graduate study and further involvement in the performing arts. It is both a structured and sequential major, ensuring that all students have broad exposure and training in acting, directing, movement, design, technical production, performance history and theory in addition to the opportunity to focus on a specialized track during the junior and senior years. Theater and Dance majors complete their coursework with the Senior Production Seminar, a capstone experience emphasizing the vital connection between theory and practice.