At the foundation of the training is a strong curriculum mixing studio and classroom instruction with considerable practical experience in the context of realized productions in the department’s three theatres. The in-depth mentorship through each production is based on a design practice that hews closely to professional standards, and relies on a close-knit community of peers within the M.F.A. design and technology area to support each student’s work.
Among our program’s core values are collaboration and communication skills, mature professional process, and a rich understanding of the breadth and depth all the things of lighting design can be. Students explore expansive aesthetic influences that encompass the visual language of culture past, present, and future. The department’s full production calendar, coupled with its limited population of graduate students, is designed to provide multiple opportunities to design fully produced theater and dance productions over the course of the three program years.
Students are given multiple opportunities to serve in support roles for productions within the department, and faculty also encourage and facilitate professional connections locally at the University’s Jacobs School of Music, and at professional companies in the region.
Beyond the work within the department, lighting faculty are engaged professionally as lighting designers at the national and international levels and involve graduate students in that professional work wherever possible.
To ensure a deep understanding of related specializations, students may take courses in Theatre Technology, Scenic, Costume, or Sound Design, or declare a minor in any of these areas if they successfully complete an approved sequence of courses in one of these areas.