Page 1

University of South Carolina College of Arts & Sciences


Historic Longstreet Theatre Built in 1855, and after a storied history of use as a chapel, a Civil War hospital, a science building and a gymnasium, Longstreet was restored as a premier arena-style theatre in the late 1970s.

About Us With areas of study focusing on acting, directing, design, stagecraft, teaching, and research, The Theatre Program at the University of South Carolina offers undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to learn, to practice, and, most importantly, to chart their own course. Our nationally-accredited program offers a conservatory-style environment with a small faculty-to-student ratio, providing each student with personal attention and the capability to tailor the learning experience to his or her individual interests. Our students are also offered the breadth of resources afforded by a large university, including opportunities to expand their knowledge through a wide array of liberal arts and science disciplines, to pursue research, study-abroad or internship programs, and make lifelong friendships with students from all walks of life. Additionally, our students enjoy living in the heart of a thriving capital city that supports a plethora of arts and entertainment offerings, sports and outdoor activities, and a rich, cultural history. Of course, we don’t just study theatre – we make it. Through our four venues, including the best arena-style theatre in the Southeast, we produce ten to twelve professional-grade productions yearly – and that’s not including shows produced solely by undergraduate student organizations on campus. From the edgiest modern plays to the most classic theatrical masterpieces to daring, original works, there are chances to create theatrical experiences that thrill audiences and look great on your résumé.

Why get a theatre degree?


In today’s economic climate, and with college costs rising, it makes sense to question the value of any degree you pursue. Will it really be worth the large investment of both money and time required to obtain your degree? Our answer is, unsurprisingly, a resounding “YES!” While many of our alumni have successfully carved out careers as performers, designers and producers of live theatre, film, television and electronic media, the training and education our students receive resonates far beyond just the entertainment world. Significantly, theatre students gain confidence, as well as skills in leadership, critical thinking, creative problemsolving, and collaboration that make them well-suited to a wide variety of professions. Often, undergraduate students realize that experience in theatre is also a great enhancement for their non-stage-oriented interests, so they pursue a theatre double major or minor.


“It is in Apple’s DNA that technology alone is not enough — it’s

technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the results that make our heart sing.” Steve Jobs, Founder of Apple Computers “Apart from the classes and learning different techniques, I have found that the production aspect at USC really does a fantastic job of simulating exactly what professional theatre is like. I didn’t go into my first professional show surprised in the way of etiquette, scheduling, or the entire experience as a whole.”

William Vaughan

(2013, BA in Theatre | Actor, Washington, DC)

William was still a student when he was cast as Sebastian in The Folger Shakespeare Theatre’s production of Twelfth Night. Since then, he has been signed by an agent, and has worked steadily at regional theatres throughout the Northeast.


BA in Theatre Guided by a faculty of accomplished masters in the field, you’ll do more than simply study the craft of’ll apply it. Our uniquely tailored approach marries classroom studies, studio work, and practical experience over all areas of theatre, and allows for elective coursework with which to challenge and develop your individual artistic talents. In addition to working with our outstanding faculty, you will have many opportunities to work with and learn from renowned guest artists representing the full spectrum of the theatre profession. You will also have access to the full range of opportunities provided by the university– national and international study programs, funding for specialized research, a wide variety of student interest groups, and much, much more. With a personalized education, and the resources of our major university, the world of theatre is truly at your fingertips. Photos, this page: Cyrano de Bergerac (top), Romeo and Juliet (top left), student in Fight Workshop (bottom left), The Trojan Women (bottom right). Opposite page: Boeing Boeing (top), MAT student teaching (middle), rehearsal with guest director Rob Clare (bottom) for Noël Coward’s Present Laughter

Graduate Level Studies Graduate students may pursue a Master of Fine Arts degree with a focus on either Acting, Scenic Design, Lighting Design, or Costume Design. These intensive, three-year programs prepare students for the professional world through practical, handson work for each semester’s main stage productions, and semesterlong internships at professional venues across the country. MFA Degrees

MAT in Theatre Our Master of Arts in Teaching program prepares

students seeking initial certification in theatre for careers in public education, and is designed to help students develop a distinctive voice as an educator and artist, while providing future generations with a love and appreciation for the theatre arts. In addition to coursework, MAT students participate in two extensive internships in public schools, in addition to other teaching opportunities in combination with the coursework. MA in Theatre Our Master of Arts in Theatre program provides

students with a solid background in theatre history, literature, and critical theory, while assisting the development of research skills that promote advanced scholarship of the art form. In addition, students are given opportunities to apply their research and analytical skills to department productions, as well as in the presentation of their work at domestic and international conferences.

Learn from the Pros! Our faculty is comprised of experts in a variety of disciplines, all of whom stay active as professional theatre artists and scholars, and often involve students in their outside projects. Students also have many opportunities to learn from and connect with guest actors, directors, and designers brought in to work on our productions. Past guest artists have come from such prestigious theatres as the Folger Shakespeare Theatre (DC), the Royal Shakespeare Company (UK), Lincoln Center (NYC) and the Utah Shakespeare Festival. “One of the biggest strengths of the USC Theatre program was the many opportunities outside of class to gain hands on experience and build strong relationships with other students, the faculty, staff, and several visiting artists. Those are the experiences that shaped my college career and formed many of my most cherished college memories.”

Ashley Pittman

(2015, BA in Theatre | Lighting Design Intern, Disney)

Ashley’s passion for lighting design earned her opportunities to design for several productions in our Lab and Main Stage theatres. Her first step after graduating was a paid professional lighting design internship with the Walt Disney Company.

Photos: Hamlet (top), Actor backstage preparing for The Skin of Our Teeth (bottom left), A Streetcar Named Desire (bottom middle), Polaroid Stories (bottom right)

Going Beyond the Classroom We believe true learning happens when you are able to put learning into action, and so we consider our stages to be your laboratories – places to apply your knowledge, experiment with new techniques, and learn from your fellow student artists. Whether it’s on stage or backstage – designing, directing or building – there are roles of all sorts for every student to play. Of course, the stage isn’t the only space to gain experience. There are numerous opportunities to take your learning off-campus, whether through professional internships, research trips, or study at prestigious national or international learning institutions. Your limits are defined only by what you dare to dream and challenge yourself to become.

“I truly believe that craft is learned on stage and in the moment. Even when we were in the class room, we were working on studio projects and becoming selfgenerative artists. That was the game changer for me, that led to me founding my own theatre company.”

Brian Clowdus

(2011, MFA in Acting | Founder, Executive/Artistic Director, Serenbe Playhouse)

While still a graduate student, and with some initial help from our program and USC’s Business School, Brian founded this outdoor theatre company outside of Atlanta, GA. In 2015, Serenbe received a National Theatre Company grant from the American Theatre Wing.

Photos (clockwise from left): Compleat Female Stage Beauty, an undergraduate poses on a summer research trip to London, England, Good Person of Szechuan, a student paints scenery for a main stage production, Mother Courage and Her Children Below, from left: a student working in the scene shop, The Importance of Being Earnest, Yellowman

Plenty of Roles to Play Our students don’t just learn – they do. Our four theatres stage ten to twelve productions yearly, with well over 100 performing opportunities and over 200 production roles. There are also several student groups to become involved with that produce published works, original plays, and improvisational shows at venues across the campus. The opportunities are endless to make great theatre, see great theatre, be inspired by great theatre, and grow into the great artist you aspire to be.

OUR THEATRES LONGSTREET THEATRE 300-seat arena-style theatre

DRAYTON HALL THEATRE 400-seat proscenium theatre

LAB THEATRE 99-seat black box dedicated to undergraduates

CENTER FOR PERFORMANCE EXPERIMENT Large, flexible space for experimental theatre styles

“Many people in the film industry do not have a degree in their area of work, but they have been able to steadily rise to the top because of hard work and love of the business. I’m thankful for my degree because I have been able to get a small head start and learn a few lessons before being thrown into the fire.”

April Brown Traquina

(2011, MFA in Costume Design | Costume Design Professional for Film and Television)

April parlayed an internship experience in the costume department of the television show Army Wives into a thriving career that has put her on the sets of films like The Hunger Games series and Insurgent, and the television show Drop Dead Diva.



Find out more about the University of SC and admission requirements @

Financial assistance is available.

THEATRE SOUTH CAROLINA Longstreet Theatre 1300 Greene St. Columbia SC 29208 803.777.4288

Theatre Program at the University of South Carolina  

Official brochure for the University of South Carolina Theatre Program, offering BA, MFA, MAT and MA degrees.

Theatre Program at the University of South Carolina  

Official brochure for the University of South Carolina Theatre Program, offering BA, MFA, MAT and MA degrees.