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Theatre and Performing Arts
(Administered by the Department of Music)
Performing Arts graduates will understand and demonstrate: 1) Knowledge of the cultural heritage and history of the Performing Arts 2) A theoretical and experiential background in the areas of performance, theatrical design, music, and dance 3) Knowledge of creative problem solving and artistic collaboration 4) Skills necessary to perform in or design for a variety of periods, styles, and genres in theatre and dance 5) Awareness of the diverstiy of expression in the Performing Arts throughout the world’s cultures 6) A practical understanding of the rigors of the field.
Assessment measures include the semester exhibit of design work or audition pieces, graduating senior seminar and exit interviews, public performances or designs, course grades, exhibited convention work, and internship evaluations.
Students interested in theatre as a major area of concentration declare a major in Performing Arts
and select an emphasis in Theatrical Design or Acting/Directing. Students implement the theories and principles explored in the classroom by participating in production work. During the academic year, Iowa State University Theatre presents up to ten mainstage and second stage productions in Fisher Theater, and works in close collaboration with ISU Music and Dance.
The major in Performing Arts offers the undergraduate student a cross-disciplinary concentration in Music, Dance and Theatre. The core curriculum consists of 24 credit hours in the three areas. Students elect a 24 credit hour emphasis in either Dance, Theatrical Design or Acting/Directing. In addition to coursework, Performing Arts majors and minors participate in concert (Orchesis, Footfalls), workshop (Opera Studio, Minority Theatre Workshop) and production (Barchje, Stars Over Veishea, ISU Theatre/Music Theatre/Second Stage and Studio) experiences.
Performing Arts graduates, in addition to a solid theoretical and experiential background in the areas of performance, theatrical design, dance and music, are prepared to meet the challenges of the work force or graduate school with their strengths in collaboration, creative problem solving, meeting deadlines and processing diverse input to yield cohesive output. Two required professional internships prior to graduation are vital to the student’s appreciation and practical understanding of the rigors of the field.
The theatre area offers a wide variety of courses. Students may select from courses in acting, design (costume, scenic, lighting/sound), make-up, stage direction, playwriting, stage management, and theatre history. Independent study and special topics courses supplement formal course offerings to provide opportunities to intensify study in a particular aspect of theatre.
Auditions for ISU Theatre productions are open to all students irrespective of academic major. Similarly, participation in areas of production other than acting is open to both majors and nonmajors. Qualified students also present experimental, laboratory, and Minority Theatre Workshop productions. Student actors, directors, designers, and technical crew heads are required to maintain a grade point average of at least 2.0 to participate in productions.
Theatre scholarships are awarded on a yearly basis to students who make significant contributions to Iowa State University Theatre.
Bachelor of Arts - Performing Arts Major (Perf)
The Core for the Performing Arts Major (24 cr) (for individual Dance and Music course descriptions, see Index for individual department listing.)
Music 102, 105
Dance 130–Ballet I, 220–Modern Dance Composition
Dance 270–Dance Appreciation
Thtre 255, 263, 365
Perf 105–(six semesters), Perf 310 (2), Perf 401
Emphasis in Theatrical Design (24 cr)
Thtre 250 (2 cr), 360, 366, 455, 461, 465, 466, Music 133
Emphasis in Dance (24 cr)
Art 292, Music 133, Ex Sp 355
Dance 222, 224 (2 cr), 232, 360, 370
Select 2 credits from: Dance 140, 150, 160, 170, 211 (instead of 160, 170)
Select 2 credits from: Dance 223, 233, 242, 243, 262
Select 3 credits from: Dance 320, 384, 385, 386
All students enrolled in the Dance Emphasis must register for one dance technique course every semester of residence up to a total of 8 credits and must complete one computer course (Com S 103, 107, 207, C I 201).
Emphasis in Acting/Directing (24 cr)
Thtre 151, 250 (2 cr), 251, 351, 451, 455, 465, 466
Minor in Performing Arts (21 cr)
Perf 105 (three semesters)
Music 101, 102
Dance 120 or 130, 270
Thtre 255, 263 or 251 plus six credits 300+ in Dance, Thtre or Perf
English proficiency requirement: Select one course from Engl 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 307, 309, 314, 315, 316, 366, 370.
The department offers graduate courses as supporting work in other fields.
Courses open for nonmajor graduate credit: Thtre 316, 465, 466; Perf 401.
Courses primarily for undergraduate students.
Thtre 106. Introduction to the Performing Arts. (3-0) Cr. 3. F.S.SS. An audience oriented, broad- based, team-taught survey of the performing arts which emphasizes theatre and includes segments on television, radio, film, dance, and music.
Thtre 110. Theatre and Society. (3-0) Cr. 3. F.S. An introduction to Theatre focusing on its relationship with society throughout history.
Thtre 151. The Actor's Voice. (3-0) Cr. 3. S. Study and practice of fundamentals of vocal production: breathing, quality, articulation, projection, and expressiveness for the performing artist.
Thtre 224. Concert and Theatre Dance. (Same as Dance 224.) See Health and Human Performance, Dance.
Thtre 250. Theatre Practicum. Cr. 1 or 2 each time taken, maximum of 6 credits. F.S. Prereq: Permission of instructor. Practice in various aspects of technical theatre production. Offered on a satisfactory-fail grading basis only.
Thtre 251. Acting I. (3-0) Cr. 3. F.S. Theory and practice in fundamentals of acting.
Thtre 252. African American Theatre Production. (Same as Af Am 252.) (3-0) Cr. 3. An exploration of African American Theatre in production; aesthetic foundations, history and contributions to American Theatre.
Thtre 255. Introduction to Theatrical Production. (3-3) Cr. 4. F.S. Standard structure and procedures, historical overview of performing arts production including the design and creation of scenery, costumes and lighting.
Thtre 263. Script Analysis. (3-0) Cr. 3. F.S. Theory, analysis, and interpretation of play scripts for production.
Thtre 290. Special Projects. Cr. 1 to 3 each time taken, maximum of 6 credits. F.S.SS. Prereq: 3 credits in theatre; permission of instructor; approval of written proposal.
Thtre 316. Creative Writing-Playwriting. (Same as Engl 316.) (3-0) Cr. 3. S. Prereq: Engl 105, not open to freshmen. Progresses from production of scenes to fully developed one-act plays. Emphasis on action, staging, writing, analytical reading, workshop criticism, and individual conferences. Nonmajor graduate credit.
Thtre 351. Acting II. (3-0) Cr. 3. S. Prereq: 251, Dance 120 recommended. Theory and practice of techniques of acting with emphasis on character and scene analysis.
Thtre 352. Stage Combat. (1-2) Cr. 2. Alt. S., offered 2006. Prereq: 351. Theory, history, and practice of theatrical combat. Includes tumbling, hand-to-hand, quarterstaff, broadsword, rapier, and dagger.
Thtre 354. Musical Theatre I. (2-2) Cr. 3. Prereq: 251 or Music 232 or 3 credits in Dance. Theory, history and practice of musical theatre techniques. Designed to develop the musical theatre performance skills of singers, dancers, and actors.
Thtre 355. Musical Theatre II. (2-2) Cr. 3. Prereq: 354. Theory, history and practice of musical theatre techniques. Designed to develop the musical theatre performance skills of singers, dancers, and actors.
Thtre 357. Stage Make-up. (1-2) Cr. 2. F. Theory and practice of make-up and hair-styling techniques for the performing arts: Theatre, Opera, Dance, Television and Film. Lab required.
Thtre 358. Oral Interpretation. (3-0) Cr. 3. F. Principles of oral interpretation: practice in analysis, in reading aloud of literary selections, and in reader's theatre.
Thtre 359. Theatre for Children and Youth. (3-0) Cr. 3. Study and practice of directing, acting, and the production of theatre for children and youth.
Thtre 360. Stagecraft. (3-2) Cr. 4. S. Prereq: 255. Tools, materials, and techniques of planning, constructing and painting of performing arts scenography. Basic principles of lighting technology. Technical drawing for performing arts production.
Thtre 365. Theatrical Design I. (2-2) Cr. 3. F. Prereq: 255. An exploration of the elements, principles and art of theatrical design.
Thtre 366. Theatrical Design II. (2-2) Cr. 3. S. Prereq: 365. Intensive application of the principles introduced in 365. In-depth study and practice of the graphic skills of rendering and drafting.
Thtre 367. Stage Management. (3-0) Cr. 3. F. Prereq: 255. The responsibilities and techniques of stage management for the performing arts.
Thtre 393. Workshop. Cr. 3 each time taken, maximum of 9. F.S.SS. Prereq: 3 credits in theatre. Offered to explore special topics.
Thtre 451. Acting III. (3-0) Cr. 3. F. Prereq: 351 and permission of instructor. Analysis and practice of period scenes.
Thtre 455. Directing I. (3-0) Cr. 3. F. Prereq: 255; 263; 251 recommended. Theory, techniques, and practice of directing.
Thtre 456. Directing II. (2-2) Cr. 3. S. Prereq: 455. Practical and theoretical experience in directing the stage play.
Thtre 461. Theatrical Design Studio. (3-2) Cr. 4 each time taken, maximum of 12. F.S. Prereq: Permission of instructor. Focuses on the art and craft of specific areas of theatrical design. Each semester the student will focus on one or two of the following: scenic, costume, or lighting design.
Thtre 465. History of Theatre I. (3-0) Cr. 3. F. Prereq: Hist 201 or equivalent. Theatre history from ancient times to 1800. Nonmajor graduate credit.
Thtre 466. History of Theatre II. (3-0) Cr. 3. S. Prereq: 465. Theatre history from 1800 to present. Nonmajor graduate credit.
Thtre 469. Advanced Theatre Practicum. Cr. 1 to 3 each time taken, maximum of 3 credits per semester, maximum of 6 credits total. F.S.SS. Prereq: 9 credits in theatre courses; junior classification. Practicum in production with ISU Theatre, with opportunities for specialization within various areas. Required: Approval of written proposal.
Thtre 490. Independent Study. Cr. 1 to 3 each time taken. F.S.SS. Prereq: 9 credits in theatre, approved written proposal, junior classification. Only one independent study enrollment within the department is permitted per semester; no more than 9 credits in Thtre 490 may be counted toward graduation.
Thtre 497. Senior Seminar. (3-0) Cr. 3. S. Prereq: 15 credits in theatre courses; senior classification. Directed study of a theatre issue or problem identified by each student. Students synthesize relevant theory and research culminating in senior project or paper.
Thtre 499. Theatre Internship. Cr. var. 1 to 8 each time taken, maximum of 8. F.S.SS. Prereq: 18 credits in theatre, other courses deemed appropriate by faculty adviser; 2nd semester junior or senior standing; cumulative GPA of at least 2.5 overall and 3.0 in theatre courses. Supervised application of theatre in professional settings.
Courses primarily for graduate students, open to qualified undergraduate students
Thtre 504. Seminar. Cr. 1 to 3 each time taken. F.S.SS. Prereq: 9 credits in theatre. Topics may include the following:
Thtre 590. Special Topics. Cr. 1 to 4 each time taken, maximum of 12 credits. Prereq: Approved written proposal.