Theatre

 At Saint Mary’s, the spotlight is on you! Whether you dream of a life performing on the stage or are interested in the production process, our theatre majors graduate with a comprehensive background in this multi-faceted discipline. You will gain knowledge of both the process of theatre production and the ideas explored in the literature of the theatre. Our stage is your world!

"My education from Saint Mary’s has taught me the leadership skills I need to be a stage manager. Now, I have the necessary skills to stand up and lead a cast and a crew in order to create successful productions." —Miranda Baxter '08

Approach
You will explore three basic areas of theatre: its historical and literary foundations; the techniques of translating theory into action; and the translation itself, that is, production. The course work will be applied in practice through production assignments under the close supervision of faculty. This approach allows you to gain a knowledge and appreciation for not only the discipline of the theatre, but an awareness and appreciation for the audience. You will gain a true understanding of how theatre illuminates, enriches, and interprets human existence.

Our theatre majors benefit from an integrated approach that not only focuses on technique, but allows the study and analysis of literature through performance.

Writing in the Major
In the fall of the senior year, students submit a required portfolio. The papers in the portfolio include: an analysis of a one-act play and two other papers written for courses which fulfill the requirements for the major in Theatre.

Senior Comprehensive Examination
The senior comprehensive in theatre takes place during the fall and spring semesters of the senior year. In the fall, you will choose a one act play to research and analyze on both literary and theatrical levels. This work is then synthesized into a paper. During the spring, you actualize the production, serving as both director and designer, for a live performance before an audience.

A short reflection paper is the third and final step of the comprehensive process. Recent projects have been as diverse as the 19th century Symbolist play The Intruder, Ionesco's well-known absurd piece, The Bald Soprano, a very current Murray Schisgal comedy, Tennessee Williams one-acts, and interesting experimental works with dance, mime and movement. This project can easily accommodate a student's primary interest in theatrical literature.

Hands-on Learning
Your senior comprehensive is not only a requirement, it is a capstone experience which involves the knowledge gleaned from the play analysis, acting courses, voice and movement, stagecraft and directing. An advisor is on hand for consultation, but our faculty encourages and empowers you to make your own creative choices in terms of script selection, performance venue, design choices, casting, and rehearsal strategies. The faculty that teaches and advises you has hands-on experience in the various aspects of the theatre.

Careers
A broad scope of career choices is open to women with leaderships skills who have the ability to think creatively and analytically. These are all skills honed by theatre majors. Many Saint Mary's graduates have gone on to join successful theatre companies, obtain teaching positions, or pursue graduate work in theatre.