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Kansas Wesleyan University

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)

The Theatre Arts program offers main-stage productions, student-directed one-acts and senior projects. Theatre joins with the Department of Music to produce events throughout the year.

Theatre Arts students also have the opportunity to perform and technically assist a variety of theatrical productions throughout Salina. A partnership has been forged with Salina Community Theatre (SCT) to co-produce musical stage productions.

What can I do with this degree?

Theatre-trained graduates possess qualities employers seek. They develop polished communication and human relations skills, and they are experienced at working as members of a team toward a common goal. Based on successfully meeting difficult challenges while at KWU, theatre graduates exhibit a positive can-do confidence, are well-disciplined and learn quickly. Theatre majors can do theatre, of course, but their experience in that field makes them valuable employees for any position.

This program is offered:

  • On Campus

Communication & Theater Arts Course Descriptions

THEA 100 Exploring Humanity through Theatre — 3 Credit Hours (Even Year Fall)

Introduction to the practice of theatre and the various curricular and program areas of the department. It includes critical analysis and discussion of the theatre as an art form, including consideration of the functions of the playwright, actor, director, critic, designer, historian and theatre architect.

THEA 105 Makeup for Stage and Screen — 1 Credit Hour (On Demand)

The Makeup for Stage and Screen course engages students with a hands-on approach to learning the techniques of the application of makeup specific to the stage, screen and photography. They will work with their own makeup kits and have an opportunity to design and execute several applicable makeup projects. Color theory for makeup will be introduced. Special attention will be given to safety and hygiene in the handling and storing of the tools and makeup.

THEA 106 Introduction to the Arts — 3 Credit Hours (On Demand)

The course includes the interdisciplinary study of the various arts, including music, painting, theater, film and others. Its goal is to help students achieve increased understanding, greater appreciation and critical evaluation of works of art and aesthetic experience. It is designed for all students, not just majors in the arts.

THEA 110 Techniques of Acting — 3 Credit Hours (Even Year Fall)

Acting is the foundation upon which the tradition of the dramatic arts rests. This course involves the training of the body, voice and mind into an acting and dramatic arts-thinking instrument. The training consists of acting exercises, scene analysis and performances.

THEA 115 Theatre Careers Portfolio — 2 Credit Hours (On Demand)

The Theatre Careers Portfolio course is designed to help students meet the current expectations of employers in the professional world of theatre. Subject matter will be tailored to meet the needs of the students enrolled in the course. Some of the topics that will be addressed include: identifying who you are and how to market your strengths, pictures and resumes, auditions and interviews, how to find work, websites, digital submissions, unions, contracts, agents and networking.

THEA 137 Oral Interpretation of Literature — 3 Credit Hours (Even Year Fall)

Instruction is given in analysis of prose, poetry and dramatic literature, with practice in communicating orally, both the intellectual and emotional meanings essential to the interpretation of literature.

THEA 140T Theatre Activities — 1–2 Credit Hours (Fall & Spring)

This course provides credit for activities accomplished outside the formal classes. These activities may include theatre production, acting theatre management and others, in consultation with the advisor.

THEA 190 Dance Techniques — 1-2 Credit Hours (Fall & Spring)

The Dance Technique provides credits for a variety of dance courses offered at the Salina Community Theater. The course includes musical theatre, jazz, tap, ballet and modern/contemporary dance. This course requires prior authorization by the Division Chair of Fine Arts to receive credit. This is a repeatable course, and students may take multiple sections during one semester.

THEA 205 Arts Management — 3 Credit Hours (Even Year Fall)

This course will explore how to manage people and resources to maintain and grow an arts organization. Special emphasis will be placed on theatre management, but all of the arts will be explored. Topics may include selling a subscription season, fundraising and facilities management.

THEA 210 Techniques of Acting II — 3 Credit Hours (On Demand)

As in Techniques of Acting, Techniques of Acting II involves the training of the body, voice and mind into an acting and dramatic art-thinking instrument, but it reinforces and furthers the work. The students will continue to explore acting exercises, scene analysis and performances, but they will delve into style, dialect work and other techniques, such as those of Uta Hagen, Sanford Meisner and Michael Chekhov.

THEA 215 Technical Theatre — 3 Credit Hours (Odd Year Fall)

This course is designed to introduce the student to the practical aspects of technical theatre, including construction of properties and scenery, scenic painting, lighting, sound, costume construction and the running of a production.

THEA 286 Special Topics — Variable Credit (On Demand)

THEA 290 Independent Study — Variable Credit (On Demand)

Independent Study consists of research, reading or other scholarly investigation or creative work. See Independent Study under Alternative Credit Equivalencies for a more detailed description or contact the departmental faculty.

THEA 310 Directing in the Modern Theatre — 3 Credit Hours (Odd Year Spring)

This is the study of the art, theory, role and craft of modern directing for the educational, community or commercial theatre. Prerequisite: consent of instructor.

THEA 325 Theatre History & Literature — 3 Credit Hours (Odd Year Fall)

A survey of theatre history through the study of major dramatic works. The plays will be studied from both a historical context and a performance aspect.

THEA 326 History of Musical Theatre — 3 Credit Hours (On Demand)

An overview of musical theatre history through the study of works and trends leading up to its emergence as a genre as well as its evolution into the art form it has become today. Musical theatre will be studied from a historical, cultural and performance context.

THEA 343 Principles of Stage Design — 3 Credit Hours (Odd Year Spring)

This is an introduction to design elements for the stage including set, light and costume design. If time permits, the course may include discussion about makeup and property design. Prerequisite: THEA 100*, COMM 140 (or THEA 140) and consent of the instructor.

THEA 350 Topics in Theatre—3 Credit Hours (On Demand)

Possible subjects include debate, advanced acting, puppet theatre, scenery construction and painting, directing period plays, voice and diction, and stage lighting. The course may be repeated for credit under different subtitles.

THEA 386 The Wesleyan Journey — 1-6 Credit Hours (On Demand)

This course combines service-learning with travel, either domestic or abroad, to provide students an opportunity to strengthen values and abilities, in addition to learning specific academic content. The service projects will be linked to the academic content of the class, and the course may require a co-requisite or stand-alone as its own special topics course. Credit varies based on the length of the journey and may involve additional fees for travel. Prerequisite: INTD 110 is recommended but not required for this course.

THEA 404 Senior Project — 3 Credit Hours (On Demand)

All speech and theatre majors are required to complete a special project. Suggested directing projects include directing a production, writing a play, designing a production, performing a one-person show or organizing a major panel discussion, etc.

THEA 460 Internship — 1-3 Credit Hours (On Demand)

This course offers an intensive field experience with a community organization. Placement will be based on the student’s career orientation. Prerequisite: Department approval and satisfaction of any entry criteria where applicable. See Internships under Alternate Means to Academic Credit for a more detailed description.

THEA 485 Special Topics — Variable Credit (On Demand)

THEA 490 Independent Study — Variable Credit (On Demand)

Independent Study consists of research, reading and/or other scholarly investigation or creative work. See Independent Study under Alternate Means to Academic Credit for a more detailed description or contact the departmental faculty.