Theatre majors are students who concentrate their focus of study in the visual and dramatic arts, with emphasis in theatre that includes acting, directing, stage management, costume design, stage and lighting design, or theatre technology. The theatre concentration combines practice with critical theory and performance methodologies to offer students a rich and broad curriculum. theatre majors take classes in stagecraft (costume construction or theatre technology), acting or design, history of theatre, and production crew. In addition, students are encouraged to take elective classes in studio arts practice, theory or criticism, photography, or film.
In the junior year, students are given the opportunity to participate in an annual trip to significant art, theatre, and film sites around the United States that will enrich their art education experience. Students receive credit for participating the trip through special topics enrollment.
Theatre concentration majors are strongly encouraged to explore theatre-related courses offered in other departments that may enrich their major, such as: philosophy, anthropology, science, history, cultural studies, language writing, comparative studies, etc. Students should speak with their faculty advisor prior to enrolling.
The Rice Theatre Program produces two stage productions per year (one fall and one spring). Theatre majors participate in the productions to receive hands on experience as an actor, designer or technician. Our program also encourages and supports our students to participate in local theatre companies and venues through volunteering, internships, and fellowships. Our students have internships with such companies as the Alley Theatre, Houston Shakespeare Festival, and Theatre Under the Stars, among others.
We also offer an opportunity for those seeking an immersive theatre experience at The National Theatre Institute. The National Theatre Institute is the educational arm of the renowned Eugene O'Neill Theater Center. The program is designed to complement a liberal arts education with three distinct study-away programs, all offering rigorous, risk-taking theater exploration. The semester long program at the O'Neill Center in Connecticut, the NTI Moscow Art Theater semester and the seven-week Theatermakers summer program confront the serious theater student with opportunities to discover new creative possibilities. Distinguished master teaching artists guide the classes in courses in acting, directing, design, playwriting, stage combat, voice and movement. The Department of Visual and Dramatic Arts will accept academic work completed at the National Theater Institute as transfer credit to fulfill major requirements (following university transfer credit guidelines).
Image: Scene from Rice Theatre Program's production of Eurydice, spring 2016.