About the Theatre Program
Western Oregon University offers several degree options: the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees. WOU degrees in Theatre Arts provide theatre professionals, emphasizing on introducing students to the skills and techniques that will allow them to enter into graduate level training or the professional arena.
Our programs create theatre artists who recognize and appreciate the importance of American and world theatre as a dynamic part of our social, political and cultural lives.
Our programs cultivate in theatre students a high standard of ethics and personal and professional responsibility as they prepare students in all aspects of theatre: set, costume, make-up, sound and lighting design and technology, acting, directing, playwriting, theatre and stage management, theatre history, theory and criticism.
Those with specific interest in theatre education will find theatre classes as a part of their elementary program, and those interested in middle or high school teaching will find that the school of education offers a masters of arts in teaching degree which, when added to the B.A., B.S., or B.F.A. in theatre, will provide a licensure for teaching drama in the state of Oregon.
Our graduates have acted in and designed for such theatres as the Oregon and Utah Shakespeare Festivals, the Houston Alley Theatre, the South Coast Repertory Theatre, the Santa Fe Opera, the Salem Repertory Theatre, Minneapolis Children’s Theatre, Seattle’s ACT, Portland Center Stage and off-off Broadway.
Our graduates have also contributed their talents to playwriting, directing, designing and stage management around the state. Other graduates have gone on to careers in television, film, arts administration, and teaching in public schools, colleges and universities.
Western Oregon University provides an opportunity for students’ participation in national and regional activities of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival.
The theatre program provides opportunities for student participation in three to four mainstage productions per year and multiple studio productions, often directed by students. Every other winter, WOU produces a musical and we do at least one mainstage production every summer.
Productions are performed in Rice Auditorium on campus. It seats 619 in the mainstage auditorium and 52 in the studio theatre. The Gerald and Selma Leinwand Outdoor Festival stage is available for summer events. Rice Auditorium also houses a scene shop, costume shop, and lighting, sound, and make-up areas.