Our goal is to equip theatre artists for the task of developing their creative gifts for service in the Kingdom of Christ. The annual theatre season includes four faculty-directed productions and many student productions. The department sponsors guest artists each year and participates in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival.

The DeWitt Theatre Arts Center houses two theatres of equal size (a proscenium theatre and a black box theatre). Scenery, costume and prop shops are also in this building that showcases a department with a national reputation for theatrical excellence. Our fully equipped dance studio is a short walk away in the Bultman Center.

The department also has a national theatre touring ensemble. The ensemble prepares a repertoire of plays to be performed in churches and schools. The ensemble is faculty-directed, with members being selected by auditions at the beginning of the academic year.

Theatre department homepage

Watch NWC theatre in action!

Major requirements

THE 112 - Performance Studies
An introduction to the use of performance as a means of interpreting, analyzing and celebrating literature, and as a tool for experiencing cultural diversity and enacting social change. By providing training in the principles and techniques of performing various genres of literature before an audience, this course seeks to expand students' understanding of the relationships between text and performer, performer and audience, and written and oral forms of literature. Assignments include solo and group performances from poetry, narrative fiction and oral history.(4 credits, alternate years, consult department)
THE 114 - Stagecraft
A practical course which introduces students to the organization, skills and materials necessary for mounting a stage production.(2 credits)
THE 206 - Playwriting: The One-Act
THE 215 - Acting I: Introduction to Acting
A practical approach to the basics of the acting craft, and the development of an individual artistic process. (4 credits)
THE 226 - Scene Design
THE 227 - Lighting Design
THE 230 - Costume Design
A study of methods and approaches to costume design for the theatre.Prerequisite: THE130.(2 credits, alternate years, consult department)
THE 235 - Sound Design
THE 312 - Directing
Beginning directors review the guiding principles of theatrical art and then apply these to script selection, development of a prompt script, and the complete rehearsal process. Each student prepares a short play for public performance.Prerequisites: THE113 and215 or permission of instructor.(4 credits)
THE 325 - Acting II: Acting Laboratory
A deepened, intensive, approach to acting and the actor?s process covering a variety of topics connected to the acting craft taught on a rotation such as: developing accents and dialects, scene work, professional audition (classical and contemporary), and acting for the camera. Note: May be taken more than once provided a different topic is studied. Prerequisite: THE 215. (2 credits)
THE 343WI - History and Theory I
(4 credits; alternate years, consult department)(Writing intensive) A study of the development of the history and theory of theatre from its origins through the neoclassical period.
THE 344WI - History and Theory II
(4 credits; alternate years, consult department)(Writing intensive) A study of the development of the history and theory of the theatre from the English Restoration through the postmodern era.
THE 406 - Topics in Dramatic Literature
Specific subject matter of this course will vary from semester to semester, but will focus on the study of dramatic literature from one genre or one playwright or one geographical area or one theme/value.Prerequisite: THE113.(2 credits)
THE 490SR - Senior Seminar in Theatre
This course is designed to study the connection between theatre and place; theatre and social responsibility; theatre and vocation. We will create our online identity for prospective employers, develop an artist's statement to take us into the next phase of our journey, imagine how our artistry can and should intersect with our social responsibility. We will also take a 4-5-day trip to Chicago. Prerequisites: Junior or senior theatre major (theatre minor recommended). (4 credits; alternate years, consult department)

Total credits required: 40