The major in theatre prepares students for careers that require skills in communications, creativity, and problem-solving, or for careers in the entertainment industry. It provides professional orientation and background within a broad liberal arts framework. Students may use the major as a preparation for graduate or professional work; the required courses provide basic training in essential theatre areas, and students planning to pursue more advanced work should take well-chosen electives in areas designed to increase specific skills.
All majors are required to participate in productions sponsored by the School of Communications; academic credit is given for all such involvement. Also, students may pursue internships with professional theatres, locally, regionally or nationally, as managers, publicists, technicians, and production assistants.
Versatility in a number of areas is the single most important factor in obtaining work. Grand Valley theatre students have successfully completed programs in graduate schools and professional conservatories. They have found work in schools and recreation departments, repertory theatre companies, modern dance companies, and arts organizations as performers, technicians, teachers, designers, directors, and administrators. The combination of critical and problem-solving communications skills with the self-confidence and responsibility coming from performance experience provides excellent training for many non-entertainment fields. A complete list of placement and careers of recent theatre graduates is available upon request.
The School of Communications and its major programs, in agreement with the universitys mission, educates students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies. The School of Communications curricula strive to accomplish this within a framework that integrates liberal and professional education. The Theatre major provides quality undergraduate education and training in theatre within a traditional humanistic liberal arts environment.
A broad education that is rooted in the arts and sciences, as well as education in professional theater, provides students with an understanding of the global history and practice of dramatic art, and trains them in the fundamentals of production and performance.
The theatre major values an education in the liberal arts and sciences, and maintains that a liberal education is necessary for both a satisfying personal life and a successful career in theatre. Basic values of an education in theatre arts are self-expression, critical and creative thinking, and an historical and theoretical understanding of dramatic art.