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College of Arts & Sciences

Office of Dean - College of Arts & Sciences
1871 Old Main Drive
Shippensburg PA 17257
(717) 477-1151

Department of Music/Theatre Arts

H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center 220
Shippensburg University
1871 Old Main Drive
Shippensburg, PA
(717) 477-1638
Department Web Site

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Office of the Provost
OM 308
1871 Old Main Drive
Shippensburg, PA 17257
(717) 477-1371

The School of Graduate Studies
Shippensburg University
1871 Old Main Drive
Shippensburg, PA 17257
Phone: (717) 477-1148
Fax: (717) 477-4016

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Theatre Minor

The Theatre Minor at Shippensburg University enables students to gain a general knowledge of acting and theatre history as well as performance and/or production experience.   

Theatre Minor at Ship

Theatre production on campus is both academic and extracurricular. The Department of Music and Theatre Arts produces the Little Princess Playhouse. This children’s theatre troupe, organized by Dr. Paul Leitner, produces several shows every semester and is an excellent working opportunity for education students interested in theatre for young audiences. Special Topics and Theatre Practicum classes also provide opportunities for students to engage in university theatre production under faculty guidance. Theatre students may also participate in national collegiate institutions such as the American College Theatre Festival.

Admission and Degree Requirements

Take as many courses in English, literature, history, and human communication studies as possible. Art, management, and marketing or advertising classes can benefit you. Experience with drama clubs and theatre productions is extremely helpful.

Courses for the theatre minor provide exposure to various types and periods of drama (Opera and Musical Theatre), performance skills (Acting and Scene Study), and production skills (Theatre Practicum and Creating Children’s Theatre). The theatre minor is 18 credits, 12 required and 6 elective. There are 4 required courses:

  • Introduction to Theatre
  • Acting I: Fundamentals of Acting
  • Acting II: Scene Study
  • Theatre History

Careers in Theatre

The Theatre Minor at Shippensburg permits students to pursue further training in the theatre while allowing for other career interests. In fact, it can expand your career opportunities. The training available within a theatre curriculum enriches careers in elementary education, communication, and English. Students interested in business, marketing, or management may consider using the theatre minor to enter the field of arts management. The theatre minor can also become a primary or auxiliary area of concentration within the Interdisciplinary Arts degree, a unique program offered by Shippensburg University.

The collaborative nature of theatrical work also provides students with important life skills applicable to all careers. The dynamics of working within a group, the importance of commitment and dedication to a task, and the discipline and rewards of hard work are lessons the theatre teaches in a very practical way.

Shippensburg University graduates have been accepted into graduate theatre programs at Long Island University, Villanova University, and Oklahoma State University. Some have gone into successful academic theatre careers at schools like Husson University and the University of South Carolina.

Shippensburg University theatre graduates have found professional employment in troupes such as:

  • Alabama Shakespeare Festival
  • Marin Shakespeare Company
  • Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Walnut Street Theatre

Summer theatres such as the Lost Colony in North Carolina, the Harrisburg Shakespeare Festival, and Totem Pole Playhouse offer our graduates and current students employment opportunities and practical experience.

Former Shippensburg art major and theatre minor alum Tom Reing, is the founder and artistic director of the Philadelphia-based theatre company, INIS NUA, a company devoted to producing cutting edge, contemporary Irish, English, and Scottish drama. Our theatre students come from a variety of disciplines including:

  • English
  • Interdisciplinary arts
  • Communication/journalism
  • Art
  • Education
  • Business
  • Mathematics
  • Computer science

Get Involved

A 3-credit internship is designed to apply classroom/studio training to production and is coordinated through faculty advisors. Internships may be extended outside the university. Recent internships include Lost Colony in North Carolina and the Harrisburg Shakespeare Festival.

Act V and Game-On Improv are two student-run theatre troupes. Open to everyone, students meet to hone his or her theatre skills. The troupe also conducts workshops and puts on shows to highlight their talent.