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Theatre & Interpretation: Acting & Directing

Major

Program Overview

Pursue your passion for the theatre. Our acting and directing program combines real-world experience with a supportive environment—and builds your skills for exciting careers in the theatre and beyond.

Program Snapshot

Program Type: Full-Time
Location: On-Campus
Program Length: 4 years
Credit Hours: 70

Why This Program & What You'll Learn

If you love to act or direct, you’ve come to the right place. Our theatre program presents some 25 productions a year, including mainstage shows, summer theatre, dance productions and studio theatre. Even as a freshman, you’ll have many opportunities to practice your skills and get experience on stage and behind the scenes.

Our studio theatre series gives you the chance to experiment and try new things—from directing and acting to writing plays, designing costumes, and choreographing.

You’ll perform in professional-grade spaces, including a 500-seat proscenium theatre, a versatile black-box theatre, a 200-seat round theatre and a recently renovated 75-seat theatre.

In small classes, you’ll learn from expert faculty whose top priority is you. You’ll also work with visiting artists who are directors, Fulbright scholars, playwrights and performers. In workshops and lectures, you’ll learn about emerging concepts and new viewpoints.

Beyond the classroom, our touring summer theatre program gives you the chance to explore traveling repertory theatre first hand—while earning pay and college credits. Many of our students also compete in national conventions or take on internships with theatre companies across the country.

Program Highlights

As an acting and directing student at CMU, you can:

  • Audition for as many as 25 productions every year.
  • Tailor your studies with courses in playwriting, performance, voice, movement and audition techniques.
  • Apply for a scholarship designed specifically for theatre students.
  • Take on an internship or an apprenticeship with an organization such as the Purple Rose Theatre, Tipping Point Theatre or Merry-Go-Round Playhouse.
  • Join a community of fellow theatre lovers in our chapter of Alpha Psi Omega, the national honorary theatre fraternity, or practice your improv skills in our student-run Trap Door Improv.

Careers & Outcomes

Our acting and directing students go on to successful careers in every aspect of the business. Some of them are household names—like Jeff Daniels, Larry Joe Campbell, and Terry O’Quinn. Many others are working as actors, singers and directors for professional theatres around the nation.

Career Projected Salary
Producer and Director $74,420
Set and Exhibit Designer $62,480
Art Director $78,930
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