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Theatre Studies (Combined BA/MA)

Are you inside needing something interesting to do during your time at home? Do you have a few minutes to help out BA Theatre Studies students? Then please give a listen to the Theater for Community Impact class podcast plays and leave a response for them!

This semester students trained with Julian Boal, studied verbatim theater techniques, and shared their knowledge with theater students in the Orange Public Schools in Assistant Professor Jessica Brater’s class. Montcair students also interviewed OPS students and hoped to return with a performance for them based on what MSU students learned about OPS students’ academic and personal lives.

Instead, MSU students created socially distanced podcast plays and other resources in response to the experience. But they STILL need an audience. They would be so grateful if you could play that role!

Theater for Community Impact

Theatre Studies (Combined BA/MA): The Big Picture

The BA/MA 4 +1 path allows BA Theatre Studies majors to achieve a Master’s degree in Theatre and join the department’s thriving graduate community through a single additional year of study. The BA Theatre Studies major currently utilizes the foundation of a liberal arts education by inviting exposure to a broad range of courses and then creating opportunity within junior and senior years for students to find and create a specialized path. The MA Theatre Studies 4+1 provides just such an option for customizing the program to suit student interests,  paving the way for academically ambitious students to pursue PhD study or deepen their abilities in the professional field.

What You Will Study

The Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Theatre Studies provides students with a broad-based knowledge of the theatre field and underscores the relationship between what happens on stage and what takes place in the world around us. The Master of Arts (MA) in Theatre Studies program builds on the foundational knowledge obtained in undergraduate theatre studies, honing critical thinking and theatrical skill sets, and preparing students for subsequent doctoral studies.  A common core of courses in dramatic literature, history, and interdisciplinary performance emphasize the link between page and stage and theater and society, placing particular focus on artists as citizens and on global and interdisciplinary perspectives. Core courses are designed to provide students with a firm yet flexible basis from which to explore wide-ranging electives in areas including acting, directing, playwriting, dramaturgy, and production. The flexible curriculum links theater theory and history to stage practice and allows students to pursue particular areas of interest within the broader discipline of theatre studies. Students in the combined BA/MA Program will take four graduate courses (12 credits) in their senior year of undergraduate work, allowing them to complete a Master’s degree with just one additional year of study.

Theatre Studies Major (B.A.) (Combined B.A./M.A.) Curriculum
Beyond the Classroom

Montclair State is home to the renowned Kasser Theatre’s Peak Performances, where graduate students have the opportunity to connect with the work of notables  such as Robert Wilson and The Abbey Theatre. Students in both the BA and MA program have the opportunity for deep engagement with the internationally renowned artists and companies who come through the Peak Performances series and perform in this world-class space.

Partnerships exist outside the department as well in the relationships built with professional theatres such as Luna Stage. Through this relationship, BA and MA students have collaborated with Luna artists, performed and stage managed on Luna’s stages, and contributed to the season through dramaturgical support. Opportunities to create work outside the department continue to grow as these professional relationships deepen.

Our Faculty

More than 75 permanent faculty members and visiting professionals – including internationally renowned celebrity guest artists and artists-in-residence – mentor our Theatre and Dance students each semester. These working professionals teach, choreograph, and share insights (gleaned from their professional experiences in the “real world” of theatre) with students in workshops and master classes. Faculty mentoring often leads to opportunities beyond the classroom.

Theatre Facilities

Montclair State boasts exceptional performance facilities with impressive technical specifications. There are six well-equipped theatres, including the state-of-the-art Alexander Kasser Theater; the 946-seat Memorial Auditorium; our 2000-seat amphitheater, and the intimate L. Howard Fox Theatre.

This exceptional range of performance spaces reflects industry opportunities and prepares students for future performances in a variety of settings.

Jumpstart Your Career

Graduates of the Theatre Studies major enter into in a wide range of professions.  Because of the program’s rigorous and cross-disciplinary emphasis on critical thinking, citizenship, and collaboration, applicable careers are virtually limitless. Students with BAs pursue a wide variety of paths within the theatre industry and in related fields such as education, journalism, public service or law.

An MA in Theatre Studies provides students with the foundation for further graduate work, leading to careers in academia. It also creates a historical and theoretical underpinning for students to excel in the practice of theater, pursuing careers as directors, dramaturgs, stage managers, and arts administrators.

Apply Now

To apply to the Theatre Studies  program, please visit Department Admissions.

For additional information about our programs, please visit us to tour the facilities and/or plan to attend one of our Arts Days and Open Houses.