The above Ad will no longer appear after you Sign Up for Free!

theatre colleges

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by 3D, Mar 23, 2006.

  1. 3D

    3D Member

    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    TEXAS
    anyone have good suggestions in the way of great technical schools? i'm a junior in high school and looking for a really good college to major in theatre at. please give any really good advice so that i can research those schools to build my knowledge on strong technical theatre schools.

    thanks, derek
     
  2. fosstech

    fosstech Active Member

    Messages:
    190
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Tacoma, WA USA
    I've applied to Ithaca College in Ithaca, NY, and North Carolina School of the Arts. I got into NCSA and I haven't heard back from Ithaca yet. Planning to visit what I get into over spring break :D
     
  3. propmonkey

    propmonkey Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    990
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Beloit/Milwaukee, WI
    I'm attending UW Milwaukee: The Peck School of the Arts in the fall to major in theatre technology and design
     
  4. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    1,789
    Location:
    Saratoga Springs, NY
    If you want to stay close to home i know a few people who have come out of West A&M and done well, as well as Oklahoma U in norman
     
  5. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator

    Messages:
    1,432
    Likes Received:
    150
    Occupation:
    Radio Engineer
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I go to the Univeristy of Virginia, and while we're not exactly known for our drama program, we do have a very good one. Virginia is pretty far from Texas, but one of the guys who lives next door to me is a Texan.

    More information is available at http://www.virginia.edu/drama/.
     
  6. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    1,789
    Location:
    Saratoga Springs, NY
    you looking for a bs, ba, or bfa?
     
  7. disc2slick

    disc2slick Active Member

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Key West, FL
    I know there have been a ton and a half of threads on this topic, if you search around i'm sure you can find a lot of input.

    -dan
     
  8. ricc0luke

    ricc0luke Active Member

    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Illinois
    Northern, Columbia (Chicago), Fordham, Southern in Evansville, NY... the list goes on... it really depends on what you want to major... not just theatre, but acting, lighting, sound... and what your plans after college... If you think you are going to go on to graduate school, goto Northern and then Columbia (for example), don't goto Columbia for undergrad and then try to get into Northern... not that you won't get it... it's just really backwards to do it that way when you look at their programs...

    but the first thing is look at which school has exactly which major you might want... nowadays, theatre alone isn't a major... there's always something tacked on to the end...
     
  9. nez

    nez Member

    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    new york
    well now are you lookin at just theatre or tech theatre cuz im lookin at tech and some colleges i have talked to have theatre but not the tech, now if you are lookin at tech i know of depaul univisity in chicago i guess has a good tech theatre and also columbia istitute in chicago, the university of maine in orono, maine and seton hill university in greensburg, pa. so if that helps ya out any im not sure but those are just some of the ones i have looked into
     
  10. jyenish

    jyenish Member

    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Minnesota State University in Mankato is pretty good. They have a strong emphasis in tech (BFA) and good professors, they even have a faculty sound designer which is pretty rare. Its a four year program that puts on 18 productions a year between its two theatre spaces. They are both ETC houses supporting Expression 3 and an Emphasis system. They have recently undergone a half a million dollar upgrade to both their lighting and sound systems.

    It really depends what you want to do and where you want to go. Besides a program you have to be happy with were you go to college. Its a big commitment to live in a place for four years.

    Another though to consider is do you want to work while in school. If your into doing tech work outside the college see what schools have good road houses near by or even a good relationship with the road house. I can't remember the name of the school, but in Iowa there is a road house that hires labour from the college before outside work.

    In addition see what schools have strong student chapters with the USITT. That is just another sign that they have a strong and dedicated tech program.

    I hope I've been helpful.
     
  11. FxDrew

    FxDrew Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    2
    Occupation:
    Immersive Environment Specialist
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Depends on what you want to do. I'm sorry to break it to you, but if you want to go PRO, you can't do everything. You need to take into consideration if it has a graduate program. As an undergrad in a grad program, your chances of getting a design is slim to none. You could also end up with a Grad student teaching one of your classes that's only doing it becuase they have to. Then again, they could love it, have more information on what's new and they could be the lead to your next gig when they get out of school.
     
  12. lights11964

    lights11964 Member

    Messages:
    82
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Indiana
    Thats not always true about being an undergrad. I know at schools such as DePaul in chicago they have no Grad program because they teach you every thing you need to know as an undergrad. Being an undergrad you would be designing by your junior year. Then again a school like DePaul is a conservatory and an extremely intensive program. If you just want to go into technical theatre as a major, i wouldnt recoment a conservatory school. But lets say you want to go into senic or lighting desing, then maybe a conservatory is right for you.
     
  13. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    1,789
    Location:
    Saratoga Springs, NY
    I believe he ment an undergrad program with a grad program against a school without a grad program, and Depaul does not teach you "everything you need to know", in this line of work you are never done learning. Also, you will be hard pressed to get any design work with just an undergrad, within reason or course.
     
  14. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    1,789
    Location:
    Saratoga Springs, NY
    If you want to be a lighting designer... go get a BFA in Theatre with a lighting emphasis (many universitys call it different things). Also, there is a large differance between lighting design and being a lighting programer. If you just want to punch buttons that is fine, but designing takes a bit more artistry. Most theatrical design programs look more like art programs then anything else. If you want to play the technician game, your best bet would be to get into some networking classes, get a BA or BFA in design/tech theatre, and go get some board training. Computer progamming skills can come in handy if you get into show control situations, but you will never have to execute a java script while sitting behind a console (at least in 99.9% of shows).
     
  15. FxDrew

    FxDrew Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    2
    Occupation:
    Immersive Environment Specialist
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    If you are heading in a digital lighting type of job, I would highly suggest Graphic Communications/Graphic Design as a minor. Not only can I create my own custom content and work with what is given to me (customer artwork), I also get side jobs designing show posters, backstage I.D.'s and websites. I also learned the whole Adobe Suite which is an industry standard.
     
  16. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    1,789
    Location:
    Saratoga Springs, NY
    While in the subject of minors pick one up if you can. An art minor is always a plus, or a history, CS, physics, or about anything that you can in anyway apply to your major.
     
  17. ship

    ship Senior Team Emeritus Premium Member

    Messages:
    6,069
    Likes Received:
    364
    Location:
    Illinois
    Always really hard to define the best school or the proper school for a specific person or for training best in any way. This is much because most of us have only been to one perhaps at most two or three schools out of a multitude of them. How does one compare or recommend the one school one has been to with one one has never been to other than it worked for me thus must be good verses didn't go to it thus in the one I went to being great the one not gone to must be substandard.

    On schools, there has been lots of past discussions about this and other forums. If you really really want what's best for you, read all past postings and follow the past provided directions by way of advice in choosing a school many in the past have refined and stated.

    What's best for me is not always best for you, much less in my own limited experience with other programs limits how much basis for expertise any of us has. How could I attest that say ISU has a better program than NIU even if it is a better program by way of my opinion? I didn't go to NIU, all I can compare is things I was trained in they at times it would seem were not and those coming from that program in getting it in comparision which is subjective in perhaps they get stuff I don't. Even Full Sail has advantages and disadvantages, I know one or two that took away from that school a lot of useful info and training they were there to learn. One or two people that came away from any school ready to go is a good ratio given the amount of schools in the industry. This granted there is still five of us from ISU where I work which makes a bulk comparison possible the now majority of those from NIU.

    Was Illinois State University better training than my boss's education at DePaul, his assistant's education at NIU, verses our head crew chief's at Northwestern? Illinois alone in colleges there is lots of them with noted theater programs as one out of only 50 states also having programs. Wisconson has a few great theater schools way back when I was in school, Wisconson had some of the best programs in fact, so is perhaps I suppose Yale a good program one would think. McCandless, Tipton and Rosenthal come from that school, nuff said. NYU, verses various California schools? What about some university verses conservitory in Ohio? This amongst many shining stars where I work that is the third school most come from - Ithica (Illinois) amongst lots of other places.

    Darwin Ried Payne out of Southern Illinois University has written over the years many great books on theater tech, yet it's known as a party school and in discussing it's program, other members of the forum in the past did not recommend it this by way of graduate students getting in the way of both design and good classes. That's a valid point even if debatable by way of the more graduate students in a program, the larger the program in keeping them busy thus the more classes in theater the undergraduates also have available. Yea, some grad student teaches a beginners class, that frees up a teacher to teach more advanced classes both grad and under-graduate now has available.

    For me when I chose ISU (by way of girl friend going to Bradley also with a good program), U of I was the best theater program in Illinois and possibly still in theory is. Problem was in an absolute sense of in having so many students, that even if a great school for theater, your chances of getting the classes you needed was in serious competition and limitation. Good if you went to such a school, getting classes much less shows on the other hand would prove problematic. Good school but not being able to get the classes you want? This of course as total polar opposite to my first college. Some local town college by way of which by way of a good high school training, in the first year I became a TD and could have gone far in hack design and being the shining star of the school. Will have learned some and gotten lots of shows under the belt, but it had only one class in technical theater - that was the extent of it as opposed to at least two a year per field in tech elsewhere. Is more classes better than more show experience? I say yes, but that's what was better for me in finding my time more useful in studying than being backstage and learning my cues.

    Given my main teacher for design went to Arazona State, perhaps that was a better school, or perhaps in knowing some of the teachers at Columbia (Chicago) it's a good school. Have one bright and shinging star of a crew person that went to Lake Forest Community College or was it Lake County Community College, than dropped out before graduating. Forget which as it was a very limited program. She is on her way towards becoming a great crew chief also - more so by way of moving up thru the ranks and having the aptitude for her career than actual in school training of use to her in the field. A few both in the upper management and crew chief level that just did the avoidance of college thing.

    School lack of it, or extent of it is a question of you. Chould chime in for recommending going to ISU or elsewhere, heck I wish I went to yale much less was still in school. Instead what served me well didn't for the same school serve amongst us from there in the same ways.

    Your choice in school is all about you. What you take to and learn while there is also all about you. Do you need a more structured program with safety net for you, or some part time school while working in the industry? What part of study is the intent to focus upon? How much classroom and assisting people experience is best for you verses show credits and experience with realized designs?

    Lots of questions to answer, if only I could go back to school knowing what I do now. Not possible but a fond wish.
     
  18. Jimbo

    Jimbo Member

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    I highly suggest checking out Emerson College in Boston. They are right in the heart of the Theater district so you are able to make connections right off the bat and they are a well respected institution for Tech Theater. They have a BFA program for Stage Management and a BFA program for Technical Theater and Design with concentrations in lighting, sound, set design, technical direction, costume design, props, and there are probably a few that I left out. Emerson College also has 3 theaters which allow you to get experience in different types of spaces, and whenever a professional production uses Emerson’s facilities, Emerson students run the productions. I could go on and on about Emerson so if you want to know more about what they have to offer please feel free to contact me at [email protected].
     
  19. drawstuf99

    drawstuf99 Active Member

    Messages:
    152
    Likes Received:
    3
    What do you folks thing about NCSA and their undergraduate program? I sort of get how you say it's harder to get work only and undergrad, but if you go for lighting design (which is only offered as an undergrad at NCSA) surely the good name NCSA has will do you some good?
     
  20. kovacika

    kovacika Active Member

    Messages:
    124
    Likes Received:
    3
    Fitchburg State College in Massachusetts- we need techs
     

Share This Page