Theatre Arts Department History
The Department of Theatre Arts
Dating back to the founding of the University Dramatic Club in 1923, the Department of Theatre Arts is committed to the development of its students as human beings and to nurturing their apprenticeship as theatre artists.
The department fosters creativity, collaboration, discipline, and artistic growth in its students. It embraces the theatre as a means of creative expression, cultural understanding, social development, and historical perspective.
We train students in the fine art of theatre, voice, movement, scene study, and design and also teach the historical and literary context of the theatre as a humanist and liberal art. All students are exposed to the diversity of multicultural theatre.
The department strives to develop, disseminate, and preserve knowledge. This knowledge includes the ability to understand the theatre arts, to appreciate them, and to create works of art that enhance the human condition.
The African American Theatre Program
Founded in 1993, the African American Theatre Program is integral to the Theatre Arts Department. It develops theatre artists trained in the traditions of African American theatre and contributes to the multi-cultural arts movement. The AATP includes two Mainstage productions a season, community service, touring, and eight courses for graduate and undergraduate students. Subjects include theatre history, literature, performance, and theatre practicum. Undergraduates can earn a minor in African American Theatre or Cultural Performance, while students in Graduate School can earn a certificate in African American Theatre. These studies in African-American theatre are unique among American universities.