Master of Fine Arts in Theatre with a concentration in pedagogy/performance

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students practicing in theatre class

About the Program

The Master of Fine Arts in Theatre with a concentration in pedagogy/performance is tailored to early- to mid-career theatre professionals who wish to teach at the university or college level. This dynamic two-year program combines classes in pedagogy, performance studies, dramaturgy, and critical studies with production work and the opportunity to teach and assist in undergraduate classes. The Performance Pedagogy program equips students to work in higher education not only within the academy but also within the broader field of theatre education. The program boasts more than 100 alumni who hold key positions in the education departments of major LORT theatres and faculty positions at universities and colleges including Michigan State University, SUNY Albany, University of Pittsburgh, Boston University, University of Connecticut, Loyola Marymount University, and many more.

Throughout their time in the program students not only gain experience in the classroom but are encouraged to attend professional conferences and participate in a wide variety of practical and professional opportunities. Students also receive professionalization training in preparing for the job market. Upon completing the MFA, students will demonstrate knowledge of theatre history, theory, and criticism combined with a wide variety of practical theatre pedagogies.

VCUarts Theatre’s newly-streamlined program has created a carefully structured approach to learning to teach in the classroom. The program requires a minimum of 60 credit hours of coursework including a written thesis in the final semester.  Students take 15 credits each semester in addition to teaching or assisting in the classroom during the second year. Thesis projects may be related to a production or course in which the student is involved. Alumna Tonia Sina, co-founder of Intimacy Directors and Coordinators (formerly Intimacy Directors International), began her work on intimacy direction during her MFA thesis work at VCU.

VCUarts Theatre is housed in the top-ranked VCU School of the Arts, which has been ranked #4 among graduate programs while VCUarts Theatre has been ranked among the nation’s top Drama Programs. Located in the vibrant capital city of Richmond, VA, VCUarts Theatre has close ties to the city’s many professional theatres, including Virginia Repertory Theatre. Located a 90-minute drive from Washington, D.C. and an hour from Williamsburg, VCU students have the opportunity to participate in a vital performance scene.

students practicing in theatre class