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Theatre Program

Theatre Degree

Learn advanced techniques in acting, directing, and stage and lighting design!

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A major in theatre gives you background in:

  • Acting
  • Technical Work
  • Directing
  • Dramatic Literature

You’ll learn advanced techniques in acting, directing, and stage and lighting design and have the opportunity to utilize those techniques in production. You’ll also learn about the major historical periods and genres of world drama and will be to analyze scripts from both the performance and production perspective. Our courses will help you build the needed skills in the following areas:

  • Movement
  • Voice
  • Interpretation
  • Design
  • Production
  • Analysis
  • Critical Thinking
  • Writing




Why a B.A. Degree in Theatre?

With a bachelor’s degree in Theatre, you’ll learn advanced, hands-on techniques in acting, directing, and stage and lighting design, complete with the opportunity to utilize those skills in production at the university’s own contemporary, state-of-the-art performance facility.




Photo of Holman LibraryAbout the Theatre Major


Housed under the Division of Visual and Performing Arts, the B.A. in Theatre allows you to gain a broad understanding of theatre art while honing your skills in a specific area of emphasis. Curriculum includes applied studio courses in acting, directing, and technical production and design, as well as dramatic literature, theatre history, and theory. Our courses will help you build the needed skills in movement, voice, interpretation, design, production, critical analysis, and writing.

2017-2018 Program Catalog

2017-2018 4-Year Plan

A minor in Theatre is also available.




Photo of McKendree's Entryway MonumentWhy McKendree?

McKendree University provides you with interactive learning opportunities through our small class sizes, experienced faculty, and unique internship experiences that move you beyond the classroom. We are committed to your success in the degree programs we offer, the internships and extracurricular activities that will set you apart, and the college experience you’ll get here. Just 25 minutes from downtown St. Louis, Missouri, McKendree University is located in historic Lebanon, Illinois, and affords students a host of enriching cultural, career, and entertainment opportunities.



Program Highlights


  • The Hettenhausen Center for the Arts - Opened in 2006, the Hett gives theatre students an impressive venue to showcase their talents. Act in an on-stage production, work with sound and lighting, construct set pieces, and much more!

  • Coursework is enhanced with hands-on experience and the opportunity to interact with professionals from a variety of fields performing on campus.

  • Related clubs and honor societies allow you to meet others and enhance your resume.



Photo of McKendree Seal MarkerEmployment Opportunities

Theatre majors find employment in a variety of professions in the arts, education, and business and are marketable for such occupations as:

  • Performer
  • Set Designer
  • Production Manager
  • Screenwriter
  • Secondary School Theatre Director or Teacher




Club Information / Honor Societies


  • Literary Interest Society - Join this student group as they journey on their annual weekend trip to the Shakespeare Theatre in Chicago to view a performance by the theatre’s professional actors.

  • Alpha Psi Omega (National Theatre Honor Society)




Related Programs





Student Support





Meet the Faculty


Michelle Magnussen, M.F.A.Michelle Magnussen, M.F.A.

Associate Professor of Theatre
Eisenmayer Hall 105
(618) 537-6586



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