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Theatre

http://www.whitworth.edu/theatre

Whitworth Theatre is dedicated to cultivating artistic integrity in its students and its program as we explore the many aspects of theatre in an environment that challenges our students to integrate their faith with their art within and beyond the Whitworth University community.

TheatreStudents in the theatre program address two primary questions:

  • What does it mean to be a Christian in theatre? (Or what does it mean to be a theatre artist?)
  • What is Christian theatre? (Or what is the function of theatre?)
Departmental Goals and Objectives

By the end of the sophomore year, the student will be able to do the following:

  • Analyze a dramatic script from the perspective of the actor.
  • Employ a variety of rehearsal techniques.
  • Prepare an audition.
  • Create both individual and group performances from a variety of texts.
  • Articulate basic theoretical and ethical performance issues.
  • Construct basic stock units for a set.
  • Employ proper vocal techniques for performance (acting track).
  • Employ proper movement techniques for performance (acting track).

By graduation, the student will be able to do the following:

  • Define “Christian theatre” and explain what it means to be a Christian in theatre from a personal point of view (or, if the student is not a Christian, s/he is asked to define “theatre” and what it means to be in theatre given her/his worldview).
  • Execute the four fundamentals of play directing: play analysis, communication with actors, design and production, interpretation and style.
  • Identify important practices, playwrights, and plays in the history of theatre and articulate the relationship between theatre and the culture within which it exists.
  • Construct a theoretical argument using historical information.
  • Create and present a project demonstrating expertise in a chosen area: performance, directing, theatre in education or community engagement, design or research.
  • Develop and demonstrate a standard audition packet as defined by URTA (acting track) or a portfolio (production track).

Requirements for a Theatre Major, B.A. (38-40)

All tracks require the following core courses: (25)

Take 2 credits from the following:2
Theatre Production
Theatre Production
Theatre Production
Theatre Production
TA 231Performance Theory and Practice3
TA 270Stage Makeup & Costume Construction2
TA 273Acting I3
TA 275Stagecraft I3
TA 361Fundamentals of Directing3
TA 476WHistory of Theatre I3
TA 477WHistory of Theatre II3
TA 498Senior Project3

All students enter the major in the general track and remain in the track unless they apply for admission into one of the other tracks. Only students who have specific post-graduate education and/or career goals in another track should apply into that track. Admission into track II, III, or IV carries with it the expectation of significant contributions to the department in those areas. Admission is limited to two tracks.

Track I: General (38-40)

Required core courses25
TA 278Scenography I3
Two courses from the following:4-6
Introduction to Theatre
Acting for the Camera
Improvisational Acting
The Actor's Experience: New York City
Church Drama
Performing the Self
Shakespeare
American Drama Since 1900
Six additional credits in theatre6

Track II: Acting (40)

Required core courses25
TA 276Improvisational Acting3
TA 279Voice for the Performer2
TA 342Principles of Movement2
TA 473Acting II3
Five additional credits in theatre5

Track III: Community-Based Theatre (40)

Required core courses25
TA 116Theatre in Community3
TA 348Performing the Self3
TA 316Community-Based Theatre3
AR/TA 435Arts Administration3
Three additional advisor-approved credits in community engagement courses3


Track IV: Production (40)

Required core courses25
TA 278Scenography I3
TA 375Stagecraft II3
TA 478Scenography II3
One of the following Art History courses:3
History of Ancient Art
History of Renaissance and Baroque Art
History of Modern Art
History of Medieval Art
One of the following Art Studio courses3
Drawing I
2-D Design
Intro to Photoshop, Illustrator And Indesign
Painting I
Sculpture I

Requirements for a Theatre Minor (17)

(meets current endorsement requirements)
All endorsements subject to change; see School of Education for updated requirements.
TA 100Introduction to Theatre3
TA 231Performance Theory and Practice3
TA 270Stage Makeup & Costume Construction2
TA 273Acting I3
TA 275Stagecraft I3
One of the following3
Community-Based Theatre
Fundamentals of Directing
Required for teaching endorsement only
Theatre Across the Curriculum (1 cred)
Three additional advisor approved credits

Requirements for a Theatre-Dance Minor (21)

TA/PE 137Modern Dance I2
TA/PE 143Ballet I2
TA/PE 183Jazz Dance I2
TA 342Principles of Movement2
TA 384Perspectives on Faith and Dance2
TA 381Choreography2
Two of the following:4
Modern Dance II
Ballet II
Jazz Dance II
One of the following:3
Performance Theory and Practice
Performing the Self
Character Study
Two additional approved dance credits2

Fine Arts Courses

FA 101 Introduction to the Fine Arts3
Integrates the disciplines of art, music, theatre and dance into an examination of the fine-arts experience. Examines elements, media, expressiveness. Periodic offering.
FA 300 British Culture through the Arts3
Experience various aspects of English theatre and British culture through three weeks in London. Students are required to visit museums, art galleries, cathedrals, universities and other places of historical and cultural significance, as well as multiple chosen theatre and music events. Priority will be given to junior/senior students. Graded S/NS. Periodic Jan Term.
FA 301 Power and Politics of Art: Italy/Germany3
Exploration of the arts (primarily visual arts and music) in Rome, Florence, and Berlin, with emphasis on the arts in relation to history, culture, and political systems. Jan Term, odd years.
FA 304 The Arts in Christian Worship3
Explore the ways that the arts have shaped and been shaped by Christian worship practice from the early church to the present, through study in Rome, Taize, and London. Students will visit cathedrals, museums, and other places of historical and cultural significance. Jan Term, even years.
FA 305 Christianity and the Arts in Italy3
This course will lead students to the following Italian cities: Milan, Venice, Florence, Siena, Assisi and Rome. The goals of this program are to study and analyze historical and religious developments of Christianity in Italy with an additional emphasis on Christian fine arts. Students will face important political, religious and artistic issues that have shaped Italian Christianity and culture in the past and present. Periodic offering.
FA 309 Power and Politics of Art Prep Course1
A survey of European art, history, and culture for students enrolled in the Jan Term Power and Politics of Art study program. Fall semester, even years. Must be accepted for Jan Term Power and Politics of Art study program.
FA 365 Fine Arts Culture in Britain3
Taught when a faculty member from the Whitworth Theatre, Music or Art Department is part of the study program to the British Isles. Periodic offering.

Theatre Courses

TA 100 Introduction to Theatre3
An introduction to theatre history, literature, criticism, and the practicalities of creating theatre, with particular emphasis upon its cultural and social influences on society.
TA 110 Introduction to Dance1
Basic concepts and principles of jazz, modern, and ballet. This course is designed for the non-dancer student seeking to explore dance in a safe learning environment.
TA 116 Theatre in Community3
An introduction to theatre in a community context. Includes study of at-risk student populations, urban poverty, and playwriting as a tool for social change. Practical application of skills and knowledge in Spokane public school. Jan Term, even years. Meets American diversity requirement.
TA 130 Private Lessons1-2
Individual instruction arranged with members of the theatre faculty. All theatre majors must enroll for private lessons concurrently with TA 494, Senior Project. Arrangements by non-majors must be made with the department before registering for private lessons. Fall and spring semesters. Fee.
TA 137 Modern Dance I2
Analysis and theory of modern dance with an emphasis on basic technique and movement exploration. Includes a study of the evolution of modern dance and its past and present pioneers. May be repeated. Fall semester. May count as ONE PE activity course.
TA 143 Ballet I2
Beginning instruction in classical ballet focusing on vocabulary and technique. Includes barre and center exercises designed to develop coordination, balance, flexibility and strength. Fall semester. May count as ONE PE activity course.
TA 145 Theatre Production1
Instruction and performance on stage or backstage in a major theatre production. Repeatable for credit to a maximum of 6 semester credits. Registration for credit in Theatre Production is contingent upon a successful audition or permission granted for backstage work. Graded S/NS.
TA 183 Jazz Dance I2
A beginning course in jazz to empower students to see their strengths in expressing themselves through dance. Emphasis not only on technique,vocabulary, stretching and strengthening, but on stringing movements together through choreography. Fall semester. May count as ONE PE activity course.
TA 184 Postures of the Soul: Sacred Dance1
The course seeks to offer students opportunities to explore the biblical, historical and experiential connection of prayer, posturing and movement. An overview of sacred movement and meditations will be presented. Jan Term.
TA 196 Topics in Theatre1-3
Selected lower-division topics in theatre. Periodic offering.
TA 215 Acting for the Camera1
This course teaches basic camera acting skills. Distinctions between commercial, television and film acting are included. Marketing materials, daily exercises, on set terminology and protocol, and reading a screenplay are all covered. Practicum in camera work is emphasized. Spring semester, even years.
TA 216 Modern Drama3
A survey of modern drama including the major movements, playwrights and representative plays from 1900 to the present.
TA 217 Mask-Making3
An overview of the design concepts and production concepts of mask making. Experimentation with a variety of artistic mediums. Jan Term. Fee.
TA 220 Art At Large3
Production Techniques of Large Scale Painting for Community Enrichment. A lab based course teaching the skills to produce large scale two dimensional artwork and providing a means of combining creative expression with community enrichment. Course will culminate in the creation of a collaborative artwork for public display. Jan Term. Fee.
TA 230 Private Lessons1-2
See TA 130.
TA 231 Performance Theory and Practice3
Students create solo and group performances in non-traditional styles. Emphasis on both practical skill-building and theoretical understanding of performance. Limited enrollment. Should not be taken concurrently with TA 273. Fall and spring semesters.
TA 236 Hip Hop2
Students will learn hip hop technique through warm-ups, choreography, and instructional videos. Culmination project is performance in Broadway Unbound. Spring semester, even years. Prerequisite: TA-183.
TA 243 Accelerated Ballet1
Continuing instruction in classical ballet focusing on vocabulary and techniques. Includes intermediate barre and center combinations designed to develop coordination, balance, flexibility and strength. Prerequisite: PE/TA 143. Fall and Spring semesters, periodic offering.
TA 245 Theatre Production1
See TA 145.
TA 250 Stage Management2
Introduction to the principles and practices of stage and production management for theatre and the related performing arts. Emphasis on management style, facilitating communication and conflict management. Spring semester, periodic.
TA 270 Stage Makeup & Costume Construction2
An introduction to the art of stage makeup. Lab experience includes brief explanations and demonstrations followed by student applications. Enrollment is limited. Spring semester. Fee.
TA 273 Acting I3
Learn to live truthfully under the imaginary circumstances of a play. The objective is for the student to become an intelligent actor, able to analyze and critique a script, develop a character, and respond to a directors coaching. Enrollment is limited. Not to be taken concurrently with TA 231. Fall and spring semesters.
TA 275 Stagecraft I3
This course will provide an introduction to terms, tools and equipment utilized in technical theatre including, but not limited to, scenic construction, basic lighting, and sound. Lectures will focus on terminology, identification and basic principles. Labs will offer hands-on experience building the fall Main Stage production constructing flats and platforms, hanging and focusing lighting instruments and setting up basic sound reinforcement. Fall semester.
TA 276 Improvisational Acting3
Learn exercises and techniques leading to self-discovery in the releasing of creative potential. Experience problem-solving games and activities and perform before various audiences. Fall semester. Fee.
TA 278 Scenography I3
A project based course introducing the principles of theatrical design and the historical development, continuum, and evolution of the values, methods, and theories of scenography. Emphasis will be on exploring the theatre design process, play analysis, visual arts analysis, research skills, and the application of principles and elements. The format of the course includes demonstrations of various design tools & methods, project lab sessions, discussion of scenographic theory and practices, and group critiques of the process and projects. Fall semester, even years.
TA 279 Voice for the Performer2
Training in the effective use of the speaking voice for public performance. Limited to theatre majors; others by permission.
TA 283 Musical Theatre Dance2
Examination of the unique history of musical theatre. Students study the techniques and choreographic styles required for performance in musicals. The culminating project is a public performance. Spring semester, odd years.
TA 301 The Actor's Experience: New York City3
Explore culture, history and arts in New York City, from the artist's point of view. Students are exposed to a variety of art forms, including music, visual art, film, dance and theatre. It also includes a participatory, skill-building experience, in which students work with NYC arts professionals to learn performance skills. Jan Term study tour, odd years.
TA 311 Playwriting3
Fundamentals of playwriting. Students will learn to write monologues, scenes and short plays, how to analyze a script, and the differences between play-writing and screen-writing. Prerequisite: Writing I. Periodic offering.
TA 314 Church Drama3
This course involves study of classic and contemporary drama used in Christian worship. Students will engage in biblical text study, critical writing, playwriting, and performance of original theatre on campus and in area churches. Periodic offering.
TA 316 Community-Based Theatre3
A practical study of Community-Based Theatre concepts and practices. As a group, students will devise and perform an original piece of theatre in collaboration with a community organization. The topic that students create a performance about changes each year; please check with the department to find out what the topic is this semester. Spring semester, even years. TA 348 is recommended but not required.
TA 317 Company Class3
An ensemble-based performance project where students are responsible for all aspects of the production including research, publicity, performance and tech. The student company will also develop educational workshops, presentations, and discussions to accompany the production. Course will culminate in public performance and may include touring. Permission required. Audition only. Periodic offering.
TA 321 Gender, Performance, and Pop Culture3
Exploration both of gender as performance and gender in performance. Engagement with a range of theories in the areas of gender and representation, including how ideas about gender are portrayed, reinforced, or challenged through a variety of plays, films, and other performance materials.
TA 330 Private Lessons1-2
See TA 130.
TA 335 American College Dance Festival Intensive2
Development of dance fundamentals and performance strategies. Exposure to a collection of diverse dance techniques, warm-up and cool-down exercise, locomotor development and innovative choreography. Required for ACDF participants. Open to other students with instructor permission only. Prerequisite: TA/PE-137, TA/PE-143 or TA/PE-183.
TA 337 Modern Dance II2
This course will provide instruction and performance experiences in advanced principles and techniques of Modern Dance. This is a performance-based course. Spring semester, even years.
TA 342 Principles of Movement2
Students will be given tools to understand then connect the anatomy and physiology of the body to dance. The performance of practical exercises will allow application of the knowledge earned.
TA 343 Ballet II2
An intermediate course in classical ballet focusing on vocabulary, technique and choreography. Includes barre and center combinations designed to further develop coordination, balance, flexibility and strength. The course culminates in a public performance. Prerequisite: TA/PE-143 or TA 243. Spring semester.
TA 344 Theatre Across the Curriculum1
Theatre techniques can be applied across the curriculum in any elementary classroom. Students will study creative drama, story theatre, reader's theatre and improvisation. Students will learn the techniques and perform them, as well as apply them to their own teaching situations. Priority to elementary-education majors. Prerequisite: TA/PE-143 or TA 243. Fall and spring semesters. Fee.
TA 345 Theatre Production1
See TA 145.
TA 348 Performing the Self3
Theatre games and performance techniques for effective communication, problem-solving, relationship building, self-exploration and self-expression. No previous performance experience necessary. Sophomore and above. Every other year.
TA 361 Fundamentals of Directing3
The technical aspects of directing include play selection, casting, blocking, emphasis on characters, picturization, composition, rhythm. The student will study, then apply these techniques by staging a short production for a public audience. Prerequisite: TA 231 and TA 273. Fall semester.
TA 373 Character Study3
A practical exploration of theories and methods for creating character, including scene work, playing multiple characters, creating original work, and solo performance. Students must have completed TA 231 and TA 273 prior to registering for TA 373. Course is substitutable for TA 473 in the Acting track. Spring semester, even years.
TA 375 Stagecraft II3
Project based course providing training in professional Stagecraft skills including: computer aided drafting for scenic and lighting production, technical direction including materials handling, advanced scenic construction techniques, basic rigging, equipment maintenance, production supervision, scheduling, and budgeting. Prerequisite: TA 275. Spring semester, even years.
TA 379 Advanced Voice for the Performer3
Advanced training in diction and vocal production with emphasis on text work. Prerequisite: TA 279. Spring semester.
TA 381 Choreography2
Learn basic principles and concepts for constructing dance choreography.Students will create, cast, and produce an original dance composition for an adjudicated public performance.
TA 382 Dance History2
A comprehensive study of dance from early recorded history to the present. Explores and examines dance practices in a historical and cultural context. Fall semester, odd years.
TA 383 Jazz Dance II2
An intermediate course in jazz. Focuses on technique, vocabulary, stretching, strengthening, and choreography. This course culminates in a public performance.
TA 384 Perspectives on Faith and Dance2
This course fosters the appreciation and understanding of dance history within the context of faith, ministry, and the church. Students will be challenged spiritually through scripture and textbook readings and technically through movement exercises and choreography.
TA 430 Private Lessons1-2
See TA 130.
TA 435 Arts Administration3
An in-depth study of the administration of community art projects. Topics covered will include grant-writing, business plans, safety/liability, marketing and public relations. An emphasis will be placed on laying the groundwork for successful community art projects within the disciplines of fine arts, music and theater. No prerequisites however, some background in art is recommended. Also listed as AR 435. Fall semester, even years.
TA 445 Theatre Production1
See TA 145.
TA 473 Acting II3
Advanced training in acting styles including Greek tragedy, Shakespeare, realism, comedy, farce, and absurdism. Priority will be given to junior and senior Acting track theatre majors. Signature required. Fee. Prerequisites: TA 231 and TA 273. Spring semester, odd years.
TA 476W History of Theatre I3
The history of theatre's relationship to society through the literature, design, acting, and production styles of ancient Greece to neo-classical France. Fall semester, odd years.
TA 477W History of Theatre II3
The history of theatre's relationship to society through the literature, design, acting, and production styles from Restoration England to the present day. Spring semester, even years.
TA 478 Scenography II3
A project based course in theatrical design and the values, methods, and theories of scenography. Emphasis will be on the theatre design process, play analysis, visual arts analysis, research skills, and the application of principles and elements. The format of the course includes project lab sessions, discussion of scenographic theory and practices, group critiques of the process and projects, and creation of a professional design portfolio. Prerequisite: TA 278, AR 120, AR 124, or AR 220. Spring semester, odd years.
TA 481 Projects in Theatre1-3
Projects in performance or research in some aspect of theatre that is not available in regularly scheduled courses but has particular significance in that students program. The project is proposed by the student and refined in consultation with the professor. Feasibility and appropriateness must be approved by the department faculty. Prerequisites: completion of a minimum of four courses in Theatre, two of which must be upper division. Fall and spring semesters.
TA 482 Projects in Theatre1-2
See TA 481.
TA 483 Jazz III2
Building on knowledge and experiences from Jazz I and Jazz II, students will continue to learn and practice jazz dance technique. Culminating project will be performance in Broadway Unbound. Prerequisites: TA 183 and TA 383. Spring semester, even years.
TA 498 Senior Project3
The Senior Project is the capstone experience for the theatre major and allows the student to demonstrate expertise and artistry by completing one of the following: performance (solo or group, original or interpretive), project (directing, playwriting, arts administration, internship, etc.), or research paper. All majors must apply by submitting a proposal in their chosen area during the spring semester of their junior year. Proposals are subject to faculty approval. Prerequisites: faculty approval, senior status and concurrent registration for TA 430 (private lessons).
Dean of Arts and Sciences

NOELLE WIERSMA

Chair

DIANA TROTTER

Professor

DIANA TROTTER

Assistant professors

AARON DYSZELSKIBROOKE KIENER