MSU Department of Theatre Graduate Education: Training the Artist & Educator


Its young, its fresh, its new, its alive
I mean its immersive Just the amount of things that you can do
in this department are is kind of incredible Theres never a moment when we’re not learning
and theres never a moment that we’re not being pushed
The MSU program for design, for an MFA in design is actually a production design degree,
so that means you come here not planning to graduate with a specific focus
Its really unique in that we have our students ah, not focus in only one area of design
but that they are able to explore all different areas
One of the big things that attracted me here was that it had that multiple concentration
The idea is really to understand the fundamental principles of design and how one understanding
of design can really influence another area of design It really helps you get a fuller perspective on what your primary focus is
The more broad based background that they have in all design areas makes them much more
marketable We really like the idea of creating a teaching
artist You get trained as an actor, but you also
get trained as an educator What kind of sets our program apart is that
its evenly divided 50 percent between professional actor training and teaching mentorship
I get handed a room every semester, and it gets filled with students thats just handed
to me and I get to practice teaching We put you in the classroom from day one of
the program For people who do want to go into education
there is no other place better than this By the time you leave this program you have
a fully developed professional acting resume, as well as a fully developed curriculum vitae
At MSU they say your professional like work comes first
Having the Williamston Theatre here is just this incredible opportunity, we get to assistant
stage manage, we get to audition for their shows, sometimes we get cast in them
When you get people who are young and exuberant, and also know what they’re talking about,
they have a good stepping off point to be able to contribute to the dialogue thats going
on in our process and earning your membership in that union is really vital to starting
down your path Usually when you’re talking about Equity theatres
or those professional markets they’re sort of large and far away and unobtainable and
far away and totally separate from the university world, here its just totally integrated family
In every other interview I went on, it was like “well we only do this” theres so much
going on here it it feels like I’m cycling and I just get faster and faster and faster
until I can just like launch You have to really try to get in as much experience
as you can and with a school like this there’s so much that you can’t do it all, and thats
kind of, thats kind of awesome There’s nothing you can’t try here

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