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The Curriculum

THE SHARED MFA CORE

An equitable distribution of core knowledge and competencies shared by all theatrical practitioners. 

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS, INSTRUCTOR, & SEQUENCING

Analysis Research & Interpretation (3) | Deb Alley | Fall of 1st Year.

· This course reviews various methods of analysis of a dramatic text. This includes inductive, deductive, structural, and methodical approaches. It also examines techniques for production research and explores issues of interpretation that affect the development of a plays translation into a production on stage.

Collaborative Theory (3) | Brandon McWilliams | Spring of 1st Year.

· This course examines the nature of collaboration within the context of live entertainment production processes. Particular attention is focused on psycho/sociological aspects in collaborative work environments and exposing opportunities for listening, connection, and, clarity in communication.

Fundamentals of Environment (3) | Cheri Prough DeVol | Fall of 1st Year

· This course is a practical exploration of the processes and techniques for the development of scenic and lighting designs within the context of live production. Theoretical projects will provide focus on the development of a common vernacular and emphasize problem-solving skills. In Class Studio Sessions will develop analysis, research, clear and efficient presentation skills, as well as graphic skill development.

Fundamentals of Character (3) | Michelle Ney | Spring of 1st Year

· This course is a practical exploration of the processes and techniques used for character development from the prospective of a director and costume designer within the context of live production. Theoretical projects will provide focus on the development of a common vernacular and emphasize problem-solving skills. In Class Studio Sessions will develop analysis, research, clear and efficient presentation skills, as well as graphic skill development.

History of Material Culture Pre 20th Century (3) | Michelle Ney | Fall of 2nd Year

· This course is a historical survey of material culture and its influence on theatrical production pre twentieth century. Attention will be placed on research of the architecture, interiors, fashion, and social culture of seminal periods and how we activate this research as practitioners.

History of Material Culture in the 20th & 21st Century (3) | Ana Martinez | Spring of 2nd Year

· This course is a historical survey of material culture and its influence on theatrical production in the twentieth and twenty first century. Along with anthropologic research, attention will be placed on the influences that shaped seminal practitioners of theatrical production.

Brand Management & Career Practices (3) | Brandon McWilliams | Fall of 3rd Year

· This course focuses on the creation of a unique brand and marketing toolkit for practitioners in the live entertainment industry. Basic principles of business practices including accounting, tax law, networking, and unions are also explored.

Devising Theatre (3) | Yong Yoo | Spring of 3rd Year

· This course is an interdisciplinary laboratory with a focus on the creation of original work that incorporates a strong visual component. Individual artistic development will be addressed along with the particular challenges of devising theatrical work through non-traditional methods.

THE DIRECTING CONCENTRATION

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS, INSTRUCTOR, & SEQUENCING

Directing Studio 1 (3) | Jerry Ruiz | Fall of 1st or 2nd Year

· This course focuses on the use of Stanislavski techniques by directors in staging scenes from the works of Chekhov, the Group Theatre Playwrights (Lillian Hellman, Dawn Powell, etc.) and contemporary playwrights writing in the style of realism (Baker, Saracho, Nottage, etc).

Directing Studio 2 (3) | Deb Alley | Spring of 1st or 2nd Year

· This course focuses on non-realistic and non-linear plays. Playwrights may include Beckett, Pinter, Ionesco, Treadwell, Caryl Churchill, debbie tucker green, Tarell Alvin McCraney, Mark Ravenhill, Young Jean Lee, Christopher Chen, Antoinette Nwandu.

Directing Studio 3 (3) | Jerry Ruiz |Fall of 1st or 2nd Year

· This course is an exploration of 21st century plays and playwrights, beginning with Suzan Lori Parks, Jose Rivera and Charles Mee and continuing with more recent plays by Quiara Hudes, Katori Hall and Paula Vogel.

Directing Studio 4 (3) | Yong Yoo | Spring of 1st or 2nd Year

· This course in Devising allows directors to develop a solo work as well as a collaborative group project along with a company of performers. Different methods of devising are explored through these processes.

Directing Studio 5 (3) | Chuck Ney | Fall of 3rd Year

· This course focuses on directing Shakespeare, with fundamental tools in dealing with language, meter, scansion, etc.

Directing Studio 6 (3) | Chuck Ney | Spring of 3rd Year

· This course focuses on directing in various Styles, from Greek Theatre to Restoration Comedy to later playwrights such as Oscar Wilde and George Barnard Shaw.

Directing Seminar |  Jerry Ruiz or Deb Alley

· This course takes place each semester, with the entire MFA Directing Cohort being led by one of the faculty through a series of conceptual projects, professional development, also providing students with advisement on various production projects and studio scenes.