Courses in Theatre and Drama (Division 695)

101. Introduction to Acting I. Permission of instructor (brief interview). (3). (Excl).

This course is designed as a general introduction to the fundamental skills of acting in the theatre. It involves discussion and practical work, including theatre games, warm-up, monologue, and scene work. Some papers and selected reading. Brief, informal interviews are required for admission to all sections. Further details at Theatre Office, Room 2550, Frieze Building. (Gwillim, Jackson)

102. Introduction to Acting II. Permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

This course is designed to build on the experience of Theatre 101 or Theatre 236. An introduction to acting in the theatre, with particular attention to texts of representative playwrights. Scene work is stressed, with some papers and selected reading. Brief, informal interviews are required for admission to all sections. Further details at Theatre Office, Room 2550, Frieze Building.

211/Res. College Hums. 280/English 245. Introduction to Drama and Theatre. (4). (HU).

See English 245. (Nightingale)

222(232)/CAAS 341. Introduction to Black Theatre. (3). (HU).

This course will cover the origins, development and current trends in Black Theatre. It will focus on the basic concepts, creations, methods of operation, and artistic contributions of Black Americans to the theatre of Western Civilization and the theatre of Black America. It will also include an in-depth study of the significance and results connected with the selected deletion of the Black American contribution to the development of American theatre and drama. Representative plays from the Black theatre will be explored through lectures, discussions and interpretive readings. Participation in class and attendance are mandatory as are assignments such as viewing campus theatre productions and other productions in the Ann Arbor area. A written essay, four quizzes, a midterm and final examination will also be given in partial fulfillment of the course requirements. Text: THE THEATRE OF BLACK AMERICANS, ed. by Errol Hill. (Jackson)

233/CAAS 342. Acting and the Black Experience. (3). (HU).

This course is designed as an introduction to the fundamental skills of acting in the theatre, with special emphasis on the presentation of drama from a Black perspective. Course content involves discussion and practical work, including theater games, improvisation, development of warm-up exercises, monologue, and scene work. All dramatic texts used for monologues and scene study will come from the works of representative Black playwrights. Some papers and selected reading, a midterm and final examination are required. A brief, informal interview is required for admission to this course. Further details at Theatre Office, Room 2550, Frieze Building. Text: ACTING ONE, by Robert Cohen (Jackson)

234(334). Voice I. Permission of instructor. (2). (Excl).

This course enables students to discover their vocal 'instruments' and develop them, ridding themselves of bad acquired habits in the process. Work will be primarily but not wholly practical. (A. Klautsch)

235(435). Movement I. Permission of instructor. (2). (Excl).

This course aims to provide performers with a working knowledge of their bodies. Exercises, improvisation, and other techniques will aid in developing awareness of the physical 'instrument' as an expressive means. (Udow)

236. Acting I. Permission of instructor (audition). (3). (Excl).

This course serves only those students having a serious interest in the art of acting and the intention of progressing to more advanced performance classes. It is still, however, an introductory course, offering 'on feet' work with a particular emphasis on the exploration and definition of the physical aspects of acting through theatre games, exercises, and improvisation. Papers and selected readings are required, as is student attendance at departmental productions. Entry is by permission of instructor, determined through a short audition and interview. Audition sign-ups with further information will be posted at Room 2545A, Frieze Building, by March 28. (Klautsch)

250. Production Practicum. (1). (Excl). May be repeated for a total of 4 credits.

Special laboratory work in theatre production. No text. No exams. Grades are based on their performance of assigned crew work. (Section 001 Decker. All other sections by permission of instructor only.)

321(421)/English 443. History of Theatre I. (3). (HU).

This course should be elected by all concentrators. A survey of the development of theatre from the ancient Greeks to the 17th century. While representative plays are read, the emphasis is placed on theatre as performance, focusing on the theatre structure, design, acting, and audience. This is primarily a history of Western theatre, but some time is devoted to non-Western forms. (Ferran)

345(445). Stage Management. Theatre 251 and permission of instructor. (2). (Excl). May be elected for a total of 4 credits.

Class covers methods of stage management including rehearsal coordination, prompt book preparation, record keeping, and director, cast, and crew relationships during the rehearsal period. Students will be assigned as Assistant Stage Manager on a School of Music production (theatre, opera, musical theatre or dance) requiring, during the rehearsal/performance period, approximately 70 hrs. outside of class time. Evaluation is based on class participation, occasional written assignments, and execution of assigned stage management duties. (Finley)

356(456). Introduction to Lighting for the Stage. Theatre 251 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

An introduction to the theory and practice of lighting design for the stage, TV, and dance. Topics to be covered include: Text analysis, methods and approaches to lighting different forms of stages and performances, equipment specifications and use, light plots and schedules, color, basic electricity, etc. It is recommended that the student have a basic knowledge of technical theatre practices. Course grades will be based on midterm and final exams, written analyses of play texts and two design projects. Also each student is required to participate on the lighting crew for a Theatre Department production during the term. Instructional methods will include lecture, demonstration and practical application. Graduate students should sign up for Theatre 557. (Billings)

385. Performing Arts Management. Theatre 251 and permission of instructor. (2). (Excl).

Course topics of Arts Administration that we will cover:

  1. Setting goals (strategic planning)
  2. Interpersonal and organizational issues (managing people)
  3. Artistic organizations and the community (Do they want what we want?)
  4. Administering money (how to get it and how to spend it)
  5. Marketing the arts.

Detailed topics to be considered as part of the above:

  1. Organizational structure.
  2. Using boards of directors effectively.
  3. Planning a season.
  4. General principles of contracts.
  5. Budgeting techniques and analysis.
  6. Using financial statements effectively.
  7. Commercial vs. nonprofit.
  8. Fundraising and grants.
  9. Setting ticket prices
  10. How to do a press release and plan a brochure.

Texts: course packs of various readings, articles, and cases. Frequent use of the case method for teaching. (Kuras)

386(486). Practicum in Performing Arts Management. Permission of instructor. (2). (Excl). May be elected for a total of 6 credits.

Students will gain practical experience in arts administration by assisting in the creation of approximately six productions per term presented under the auspices of the School of Music, including drama, dance, musical theatre, and opera. Students are required to meet "real world" deadlines and to contribute toward meeting actual ticket sales goals. Administrative assignments include: writing, press releases, developing marketing campaigns, creating print and radio ads, assisting in ticket-office, and managing the house during performances. One hour of class per week is required plus weekly duties according to the particular production. Theatre 385 is a suggested prerequisite concurrently, or previous backstage experience. (Kuras)

402. Theatre Forum. Permission of instructor. (1). (Excl). May be elected for a total of 4 credits.

This course should be elected by all concentrators, and is closed to all but theatre concentrators, though in exceptional cases others may attend by permission of instructor. Repeatable three times. At this weekly 'meet' of concentrators, theoretical issues of topical moment will be discussed, talks on theatrical topics will be given by faculty and occasional visitors, and criticism of current production on-campus will be assayed. Grades will be awarded on the basis of class contribution and papers. (Nightingale and staff)

434. Voice II. Theatre 234 or permission of instructor. (2). (Excl).

This allows further exploration of the voice than in Voice I paying attention to the demands of particular playwrights and texts. Prerequisite 234, Voice I.

436. Acting V. Theatre 337 and permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

This course is designed for performance concentrators in Theatre and Musical Theatre, or those with a demonstrated experience in acting. There will be particular attention paid to individual rehearsal and audition techniques, and students will be prepared for graduate, conservatory or professional work. Scene laboratory and memorization will be required. Some papers and selected reading will also be required. Limited television studio work will be available and is encouraged. Individual work with the instructor is also encouraged. The normal prerequisite will be 234, 235, 337 and permission of instructor; but in the special circumstances caused by the Theatre Department's reorganization of its acting classes, entry this term will be by permission of instructor, and seniors who have taken Theatre's former 436 may be eligible. (Kerr)

439. Acting Practicum. Permission of instructor. (1). (Excl). May be elected for a total of 4 credits.

This course is for students who wish to participate as performers in the playwriting courses offered by English. This will involve reading, trying out and acting scenes as required.

441. Directing I. Theatre 102 or 237, and permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

Directing I is designed to introduce the student to some of the fundamentals of stage direction. The course combines practical exploration with the study of several important directors and their contributions to the field. A major focus of the practical work is learning to envision a production visually and move actors about in the performance space. Aspects of this work include achieving emphasis and focus, creating meaningful and interesting stage pictures, mastering movement patterns, understanding the varying requirements of different kinds of performance spaces, and creating ground plans. Students will be required to present several short directing projects and to write one paper. (Cohen)

451. Advanced Technical Theatre Practices. Theatre 251 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

Study of constructions and rigging of stage scenery. Drafting, wood metal and plastics fabrication is covered. Students do special construction projects for University Productions. Evaluations by exams plus lab work. Text: Burris Meyer & Cole, SCENERY FOR THE THEATRE. (Decker)

460. Principles of Scene Design. Theatre 251 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

An introductory course in the design of scenery and space for theatrical productions. Topics to be covered include: analysis of the play script and the development of a production concept; the expression of the concept through use of design and compositional elements, production style and period; theatre floor plans and tech drawings; set rendering. This course is specifically for students who have some art training. Course grades will be based on written analyses of specific play texts and design projects. Each student will be required to participate on one full production crew for a Theatre Department production during the term. It is recommended that the student have some basic knowledge of technical theatre practices. Method of teaching will be by lecture, demonstration and practical application. (Billings)

461. Scenic Design Theory. Theatre 251 or permission of instructor. No credit granted to those who have completed 460. (2). (Excl).

This course is basically the same as Theatre 460, but is geared for the student who does not have some basic proficiency in drawing and painting, but who wishes an understanding of the place of scenic design within the art of theatre production and the process of developing a concept and design from a play text. (Billings)

464. Scene Painting for the Theatre. Theatre 251 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

An introductory study in the techniques, methods of painting scenery for the stage. Class demonstration, critiques, projects. The course grade will be based on assigned painting projects. Students are required to serve on one paint crew for a Theatre Department production during the term. No specific text, but reading in the library will be assigned. (Beudert)

466(560). History of Decor. Theatre 351 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

A chronological study of the decorative styles of interiors and exteriors in Western Architecture and its application to the stage. (Beudert)

470. Costume Design I. Theatre 351 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

A one term survey of the history of western fashion and dress with its application to theatrical usage. Manners of the time as they affect acting and movement will be discussed. Periods covered 2,000 BC through 1960's. Text: Boucher, 20,000 YEARS OF FASHION. Students will be required to create a file of historical dress to aid in understanding how to approach pictoral research. There will be a final examination. (Crow)

471. Beginning Pattern Making. Permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

A one term exploration of the art of three dimensional clothing and costume construction. Students will draft basic bodice, sleeve, skirt and trouser slopers and a basic introduction to the grading of pattern sizes up and down from that basic sloper. Students will be required to interpret a costume design for the theatre in muslin and to put in 60 hours on costume construction work for University Productions. (Crow)

472. Stage Makeup. Theatre 211 or permission of instructor. (2). (Excl).

Theatrical Makeup is studied through theory and demonstration with students practicing application of makeup from basic corrective makeups through more complicated character ones as the term progresses. Laboratory, in addition to class practice, includes the crewing of the departmental productions. Evaluation is based on progress, class participation, graded exercises, crew work and final practical exam. Text: Richard Corson, STAGE MAKEUP, 6th edition. (Crow)


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