Theatre Arts

Undergraduate Program Information

With strong emphases in acting, musical theater, new works and design/technical theatre, the program prepares students for graduate study, life in the profession, or a myriad of related job fields. Students gain practical experience through a wide array of courses designed to expose them to the varied aspects and job positions involved in theatrical production. Additional experience is gained via work on our public productions. The faculty is augmented by nationally-renowned guest theatre artists.

A minimum of 62 credits with a grade of C- or higher in theatre arts is required for the major. Theatre Arts does not require a second language.

Students enrolled in this department’s major or minor may count credits in required applied courses toward their degrees beyond the normal maximum of 9 credits allowed in the College of Arts and Sciences. However, if a student changes the major or does not complete the requirements for the minor at the time of graduation, they may only count a maximum of 9 credits of the applied credits toward graduation.

Students preparing to teach in public schools may qualify for certification by completing the Bachelor of Science in Education degree with theatre arts as a teaching field. (See curricula in the College of Education section).

At any time the Theatre Arts program may be undergoing curriculum changes. For the most up-to-date information about degree requirements please visit https://theatre.nmsu.edu/ or visit the Theatre Arts Department at room 318 in the ASNMSU Center for the Arts Building on University Ave at Espina.

Minors for the Department

Theatre Arts - Undergraduate Minor

Professor, Wil Kilroy, Department Head/Managing Director

Professor: Storm; Associate Professor: Lury; Assistant Professor: Hamilton; College Professor:  C. Billings; College Associate Professors:  J. Billings, D. Brunson Professional Staff: Carruthers,  Hereford, Jaworski, Wilkinson, Wise Office Staff:  Bacon, Gower

Theatre Arts Courses

THEA 1110G. Introduction to Theatre

3 Credits (3)

This course provides an introduction to the study of theatre. Students will examine various components that comprise theatre, such as acting, directing, playwriting, dramaturgy, scenic and costume design, stagecraft, spectatorship, history, theory, and criticism.

THEA 1210G. Acting for Non-Majors

3 Credits (3)

This class gives non-majors experience in the depth and craft of the actor’s art. Students will learn various terms, techniques, and practices of acting and will demonstrate their understanding in class. Through exercises and improvisations, partnered scenes, and group work, students will be better able to appreciate the work of others as they learn techniques of performing. May be repeated up to 3 credits.

THEA 1221. Beginning Acting

3 Credits (3)

Basic understanding of self-expression through a variety of physical exercises, improvisation, and character study, culminating in scene or monologue work. Restricted to: THTR majors.

THEA 1222. Stage Movement

3 Credits (3)

Physical techniques for the actor to develop kinesthetic awareness and skills in characterization, archetypes, and stage combat. Restricted to: THTR majors.

THEA 1223. The Art of Theatre

3 Credits (3)

This course introduces the variety and scope of theatre professions, the value and goals of the theatre major and an analysis of the art form from script to stage. Restricted to: Required for THTR majors majors.

THEA 1310. Introduction to Costuming

3 Credits (3)

This course introduces students to basic skills generally used in creating costumes for theatre. During the semester students will be introduced to the costume shop, equipment, supplies, and processes. They will learn the process of sewing a garment and running a stage production.

Prerequisite(s)/Corequisite(s): THEA 1310L. Restricted to: THTR majors.

THEA 1310L. Costume Craft Lab

1 Credit (1)

Class members will assist in construction for productions in a studio environment.

Prerequisite(s)/Corequisite(s): THEA 1310.

THEA 1415. Running Crew I

2 Credits (1+2P)

Students learn about backstage and front of house production positions and work on a technical aspect of a product in a rehearsal and performance environment.

THEA 2221. Intermediate Acting: Scene Study and Monologues

3 Credits (3)

Monologues and scene work, using character and script analysis. Prerequisite(s):

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1221 or THEA 1210 with C- or above.

THEA 2222. Intermediate Acting for Non-Majors

3 Credits (3)

A continuation of THEA 1210 with an emphasis on monologues, scenes and characterization. Prerequisite(s): THEA 1210

THEA 2310. Stagecraft

3 Credits (3)

Student will explore basic skills for scenic designers and techniques of set construction for the stage, including building scenery, rigging, painting and properties.

Prerequisite(s)/Corequisite(s): THEA 2310L.

THEA 2310L. Stagecraft Laboratory

1 Credit (1)

Class members will assist with construction for productions in a studio environment.

Prerequisite(s)/Corequisite(s): THEA 2310.

THEA 2340. Introduction to Design

3 Credits (3)

Introduction into our visual world via the language of designers, focusing on collaboration, creative thinking and presentation skills. The varied design professions in theatre and the performing arts will be explored. Restricted to: Required of all THTR Majors.

THEA 2415. Running Crew II

1 Credit (1)

Students learn about backstage and front of house production positions and work on a technical aspect of a product in a rehearsal and performance environment.

THEA 2421. Vocal Production for the Actor

3 Credits (3)

Exploration and development of the actor's vocal instrument, including relaxation, projection, diction and articulation. May be repeated up to 3 credits. Restricted to: THTR majors.

THEA 2993. Theatre Workshop I

0.5 Credits (.5)

Required for all freshman and sophomore theatre majors, this course coordinates all processes within Theatre Arts, providing a forum for discussion and feedback. May be repeated up to 4 credits. Restricted to Las Cruces campus only.

THEA 2996. Theatre Topics

1-3 Credits (1-3)

Specific subjects to be announced in the Schedule of Classes. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits.

THEA 300. Theatre Workshop II

0.5 Credits (.5)

Required for all junior and senior theatre majors, this course coordinates all processes within Theatre Arts, providing a forum for discussion and feedback. May be repeated up to 4 credits. Restricted to Las Cruces campus only.

THEA 303. Theatre History I

3 Credits (3)

History of theatre and drama from ancient Greece to the English Renaissance.

THEA 304. Theatre History II

3 Credits (3)

History of theatre and drama from the Restoration to the 20th century. May be repeated up to 3 credits.

THEA 305. Advanced Vocal Production

3 Credits (.3)

Advanced exploration and development of the actor's vocal instrument. May be repeated up to 3 credits.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 2421.

THEA 307V. Society in Style: Fashion, History and Culture

3 Credits (3)

History of clothing for theatrical purposes, origins and evolution of period clothing in relation to social, political, and aesthetic factors of different periods.

THEA 308. Creative Writing: Playwriting

3 Credits (3)

Technique of one-act playwriting, and analysis of dramatic structure. Crosslisted with: ENGL 308

Prerequisite(s): ENGL 1110G.

THEA 310. Styles in Acting

3 Credits (3)

Analysis of differing styles of acting through scene work representing various time periods and genres. May be repeated up to 3 credits. Consent of Instructor required.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1221 or THEA 1210 with a C- or better.

THEA 311. Acting for Film and Television

3 Credits (3)

Specific techniques of acting for the camera are explored via hands-on experiential learning and an introduction to the business of the TV/Film industry

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1221 or THEA 1210 or permission of instructor.

THEA 312. Acting Shakespeare

3 Credits (3)

Acting Shakespeare's tragedies and comedies, including text work, scansion, movement, scene work, and monologues. May be repeated up to 3 credits. Consent of Instructor required.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1221 or THEA 1210 with a C- or better.

THEA 313. Improvisation

3 Credits (3)

Long and/or short form improvisation techniques in addition to a variety of exercises exploring terminology, character work and the elements of comedy.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1210 or THEA 1221.

THEA 314. Scene Study

3 Credits (3)

Studio class focusing on scene work and acting processes. May be repeated up to 3 credits.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1210 or THEA 1221.

THEA 315. Theatre in New York City

3 Credits (3)

Students are introduced to the professional world of theatre via productions, speakers, and tours during this travel course. May be repeated up to 6 credits.

Prerequisite(s)/Corequisite(s): THEA 1210 or THEA 1221.

THEA 317. Musical Theatre

3 Credits (3)

Acting class focused on developing and refining skills necessary for performing in musicals. May be repeated up to 9 credits.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1221 or THEA 1210 with a C- or better.

THEA 321V. Modern European Drama

3 Credits (3)

Masterworks of European drama from the 19th century to the present. Crosslisted with: ENGL 321V.

THEA 322. Dramatic Character

3 Credits (3)

How characters have been created for the stage from the beginning of theatrical performances in ancient Greece to the present day. Exploring characterization related to dramatic structure, style, and genre, and how dramatic characters differ from those in literary fiction. May be repeated up to 3 credits. Crosslisted with: ENGL 322.

THEA 323. American Drama

3 Credits (3)

Masterworks of American drama from the 20th century to the present. Crosslisted with: ENGL 323.

THEA 329. Studies in Drama

3 Credits (3)

Subtitles vary. Study of a group of related works of drama, theory, or theatre practice. Crosslisted with: ENGL 329 and FDMA 329.

THEA 330. Special Topics

3 Credits (3)

Specific subjects to be announced in the Schedule of Classes. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits.

THEA 334. Introduction to Stage Makeup

3 Credits (3)

Basic principles of stage makeup: straight, character, and specialty. Includes study of various products, methods of application, and the effects of lighting on makeup.

THEA 337. Independent Study

1-3 Credits

Students propose and design their own course not covered through regular course offerings under the guidance of faculty. May be repeated up to 6 credits. Consent of Instructor required.

THEA 341. Scene Painting

3 Credits (3)

Use of historical painting techniques in a project-driven classroom. Projects include 2-D and 3-D work, color mixing and theory, painting scenery, and the use of paint for effects.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 2310.

THEA 343. Costume Patterning

3 Credits (3)

Basic techniques in the production of flat patterns for modern and period silhouettes including some draping techniques. Consent of Instructor required.

THEA 345. Costume Practicum

1 Credit (1)

A practical course intended to provide students additional experience and greater responsibility within the workings of the Costume Shop. May be repeated up to 1 credits.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1310.

THEA 346. Scenic Practicum

1 Credit (1)

A practical course intended to provide students additional experience and greater responsibility within the workings of the Scene Shop. May be repeated up to 2 credits. Graded: S/U Grading (S/U, Audit).

Prerequisite(s): THEA 2310.

THEA 347. Lighting Practicum

1 Credit (1)

A practical course intended to provide students hands-on experience executing theatrical lighting.

THEA 348. Running Crew III

1 Credit (1)

Students will work on a technical aspect of a production in a rehearsal and performance environment.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1415.

THEA 349. Running Crew IV

1 Credit

Students will work on a technical aspect of a production in a rehearsal and performance environment.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1415.

THEA 352. Costume Design

3 Credits (3)

Basic principles of costume design, including script analysis, principles of design, drawing and painting.

THEA 353. Scene Design

3 Credits (3)

Design for the performing arts. Basic design skills and projects to exercise those skills, history of design in the theatre and the designer's role in the production process. Final project includes a finished scene design.

Prerequisite: THEA 2310 or consent of instructor.

THEA 354. Sound Design

3 Credits (3)

Hands-on training in theatrical sound design and implementation.

THEA 355. Lighting Design

3 Credits (3)

Basic aspects of theatre lighting, including electricity, color theory, history, and types of lighting instruments.

THEA 356. Theatre Production

1-3 Credits

Participation in the production of theatrical performances by stage managing, acting, designing, dramaturgy, or directing. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits. Graded S/U.

THEA 357. Computer Scenographics

3 Credits (3)

Project-oriented course teaching basic computer modeling skills. Projects focus on the creation of communication tools designers use in the theatrical process. Students will develop portfolios of completed projects. Consent of instructor required.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 352, THEA 353, or THEA 355.

THEA 360. Creative Drama

3 Credits (2+2P)

Methods of developing original dramatizations. Emphasis on curriculum problems and teaching techniques in elementary and secondary schools.

THEA 366. Summer Theatre

1-3 Credits

Experience in professional or academic summer theatre. May be repeated for a maximum of 3 credits. Graded: S/U. Restricted to THTR majors.

Prerequisite(s): Consent of department head.

THEA 384. Stage Management

3 Credits (3)

Study of stage management techniques and their application to play production. A working knowledge of union rules, and the procedure to facilitate these through proper communication skills.

THEA 395. Directing I

3 Credits (3)

Study and application of basic stage directing techniques.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1210 or THEA 1221.

THEA 396. Theatre Management

3 Credits (3)

Study of issues related to managing a theatre company and producing plays. May be repeated up to 3 credits.

THEA 408. Shakespeare I

3 Credits (3)

Principal plays of Shakespeare's first two periods. Same as ENGL 408.

THEA 409. Shakespeare II

3 Credits (3)

Study in Shakespeare's late poems and plays. Same as ENGL 409. May be repeated up to 3 credits.

THEA 410. Advanced Acting: Contemporary Methods

3 Credits (3)

Acting techniques will be explored focusing on current trends in the profession, from Stanislavski, to Hagen to Meisner. May be repeated up to 3 credits. Consent of Instructor required. Restricted to: THTR majors.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1210 or THEA 1221.

THEA 414. Collaborative Theatre-Making

3 Credits (3)

This course introduces students to the techniques, skills and practice of the collaborative creation of new theatrical material.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 1221.

THEA 417. Musical Theatre II

3 Credits (3)

A continuation of THEA 317, allowing for more advanced musical theatre techniques.

Prerequisite(s): THEA 317.

THEA 430. Special Topics

1-3 Credits

Specific subjects to be announced in the Schedule of Classes. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits.

THEA 435. Directed Reading

1-3 Credits

Directed individualized studies. May be repeated for a maximum of 3 credits.

THEA 439. Senior Seminar

3 Credits (3)

Course preparing students for professions in and related to the theatre. Restricted to: THTR majors.

THEA 440. Senior Seminar Practicum

1 Credit (1)

Capstone course preparing students to apply knowledge of theatre arts toward advanced training or career objectives in the discipline. Consent of instructor required.

Prerequisite(s)/Corequisite(s): THEA 439. Restricted to THTR majors.

THEA 450. The Michael Chekhov Acting Intensive

3 Credits (3)

An intensive overview of the performance techniques attributed to Michael Chekhov, applied to theatrical scenes and presentations. May be repeated up to 6 credits. Consent of Instructor required.

THEA 535. Directed Study

1-3 Credits (1-3)

For the highly motivated student. Independent projects and individual guidance. Graduate standing and consent of instructor required. May be repeated up to 6 credits.

Name: Wil Kilroy, Department Head

Office Location: ASNMSU Center for the Arts, Room 321

Phone: (575) 646-5122

Website: https://theatre.nmsu.edu/