Theatre Major & Minor
We'll challenge you, we'll collaborate with you, and we'll care about you.
While students may choose to specialize in a particular area through the BFA degree, we make sure that specialization doesn’t become a limitation. The most successful artists are often the ones who have learned about and experienced a variety of theatre work. To quote Lin-Manuel Miranda’s advice for theatre majors: “Do all the things... Theatre is all about collaboration, so you have to actually understand a bit of the job your collaborators are doing, so that you can speak to them fluently.” Not only that, exploring new areas of theatre is an opportunity to discover new passions and additional ways to be involved with the theatre industry. With this in mind, all of our majors take at least some course work in performance, design and technology, and theatre history and literature. Every student is different, and we see that as an asset to our department and to our field! We offer all kinds of opportunities for artistic, technical, and personal growth so that you can shape your training in the ways that best suit your individual needs and goals.
We are committed to fulfilling the missions of our University, our College, and our Department by training our students to be creative, resourceful, and engaged artists who will be the next generation of leaders in our field.
We firmly believe that theatre benefits our region, our nation, and our world in many of ways:
- As a source of cultural enrichment and entertainment.
- As an economic engine for communities.
- As a place where people come together to share an experience across all kinds of borders and boundaries.
- As a space where empathy and understanding can grow.
B.F.A. – Performing Arts: Theatre
Our brand new BFA in Theatre is intended to serve students interested in taking on a “hyphenated identity” as a theatre artist. Increasingly, theatre artists work between areas: creating the work they might act in or direct; becoming artist-scholars who interweave the work of scholarship and artistic practice in new ways; developing companies where they may at various times be a writer, a producer, a dramaturg, and/or a performer; working as an educator who develops productions with their students. By offering a breadth of knowledge engaging all these areas while also requiring a depth of study in the area(s) most pertinent to each student’s professional goals, we believe this concentration will prepare you to work professionally across artistic boundaries in the quickly evolving world of theatre where you will be creating their own opportunities, leading the collaborative process, and training the next generation of artists.
Current students shoud speak to their advisor, if interested in joining the B.F.A.
– Performing Arts: Theatre in the next academic year.
B.A. – Theatre
Our B.A. in Theatre is a traditional Liberal Arts degree, designed to provide a solid foundation in all aspects of theatre while leaving some flexibility to pursue your own particular goals. Our B.A. in Theatre does not require an audition and is most appropriate for students who want the freedom to explore during their undergraduate years. The curriculum includes study in theatre history and theory, performance, design and production, and a number of performance or production lab credits earned through involvement in shows. Ten hours of theatre electives allow you to further pursue whatever most interests you. B.A.
You will need to combine it with a minor, or even a second major. Theatre students will often combine their degree with a major or minor in Film, Broadcasting, Creative Writing, Dance, Music, or Arts Administration. But really, you can combine your B.A. in Theatre with almost any other major or minor at WKU.
Our B.A. (Bachelor of Arts) in Theatre is a traditional Liberal Arts degree, designed to provide a solid foundation in all aspects of theatre while leaving some flexibility to pursue your own particular interests. You will need to combine it with a minor, or even a second major. Our B.A. in Theatre does not require an audition.
Our B.F.A. (Bachelor of Fine Arts) is a pre-professional degree. It involves rigorous, conservatory-style training intended to hone your skills for entry into the professional world of the performing arts. Our B.F.A. involves both a broad introduction to all aspects of theatre and concentrated training in either Acting, Musical Theatre, or Theatre Design & Technology.
See more on our alumni page!
Meet Michael Rosenbaum
- Behind the Voice Actors Awards for Best Vocal Ensemble in a TV Special/Direct-to-DVD
- Title or Theatrical Short: "Justice League: Doom" (2012), Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy
- Horror Films, USA for Best Supporting Actor in a Television Series: "Smallville" (TV Series 2006)
Michael Rosenbaum is best known for playing Lex Luther in Smallville for seven seasons, as well as his 2017 Marvel Universe role as Martinex in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Rosenbaum has also produced and directed several TV series, such as Impastor (which he also acted in as Buddy Dobbs), and Back in the Day (2014), a raunchy comedy about a high school reunion.
From our faculty directed mainstages, to our student directed studio and TYA seasons, to our New Works Festival, you’ll have all kinds of opportunities to learn by doing. Our department is your laboratory. At Western Kentucky University, we believe that what you learn in the shops, the studios, and onstage is every bit as important as what happens in the classroom. Our intensive production season provides plenty of hands on experience.
- 4 Mainstage Theatre productions, including at least one musical
- A Theatre for Young Audience Series of 2 or 3 productions
- A Next Stage Series of student created works
- A Rising Artist Series of showcases and works in progress
- 2 Mainstage dance concerts
- 3 Student-choreographed dance concerts
Students collaborate closely with department faculty in all kinds of ways:
Students are collaborators on our faculty directed mainstage shows not only as actors and crew but as designers, stage managers, dramaturgs, and assistant directors.
FUSE (Faculty-Undergraduate Student Engagement) Grant Projects:
FUSE grants support undergraduate students' intellectual development by fostering active engagement in the areas of research, creative and scholarly activities, and/or artistic performances.
Students learn about teaching and enrich their own knowledge by serving as Teaching Assistants for Theatre classes including University Experience, Musical Theatre History, Fundamentals of Theatre, and multiple courses in our Acting sequence.
See more on our alumni page!
From Louisville to London to New York, we offer a range of options for experiencing professional theatre! Whether attending College Days weekend at the nationally renowned Humana Festival of New Plays at Actor’s Theatre of Louisville or spending a week in London or New York City, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to experience professional theatre!
Honors Sections / Capstones: Our capstone course allows students to demonstrate their expertise in their area of study.
Check out these recent examples:
- Cut Song Cabaret
- Claire's Process
- "Listening Back"
- Maddie's Process
- Tap for the Times
- Women on the Floor: A Study of Feminism in Modern Dance History
B.A. majors must complete a minor or a secondary major.
B.F.A. students are not required to have a a minor or a secondary major, however, many B.F.A. student choose to pursue a minor.
Does the business side of the arts interest you? Are you thinking of opening a dance studio, working in the development office of a theatre company, or starting a youth theatre program? The Minor in Arts Administration is an introduction to field.
Dance majors and minors gain technical and performance experience in the genres of ballet, jazz, modern, and tap dance, explored in both concert and commercial dance forms.
We want to help you find your passion and make that passion a reality.