Theatre & Performance Studies Course Descriptions 2016-2017

Theatre & Performance Course Descriptions

COM 121 Introduction to Theatre                                                                          

3 credits This course will include a general survey of Western theatre from Classical Greece to contemporary America. Students will learn the diverse practice of the art of theatre by studying theatre history, dramatic literature, and the practical components of acting, directing, design and production. GT-AH1 

COM 216 Dramatic Literature and Script Analysis                                              

3 credits This course will introduce students to the diverse genre of dramatic literature in Western and Eastern theatre. We will study the origins of tragedy, comedy, melodrama, the rise of Realism and Anti-Realism, as well as the sub-genres within those general categories. We will also study Eastern traditions of text such as Kabuki, Noh, and  Bunraku. Students will learn how to read a play on a deeper level for content, themes historical and socio-political influences, as well as the emerging and changing aesthetics of each genre.  Prerequisite: ENG 102. 

COM 231 Technical Production I                                                                          

3 credits A study of how things are done behind the scenes in theatre and film and why they are done that way, including the basic customs and traditions of production work and the philosophy, aesthetics, and process of production. Intensive hands-on development of skills in the construction of sets, costumes, lights, sound, and props; the operation of rolling units, lights, flies, and sound; and production assistant duties. 

COM 235 Fundamentals of Acting                                                                      

3 credits An introduction to the principles, processes, and techniques of acting. The study is designed to balance theory and performance; to explore in detail the psychological, perceptual, and conceptual linkages to the strategies, techniques, and skills of the actor; and to develop a significant sense of self-discipline on the part of the actor. Topics include warm-up and awareness skills, basic body and voice integration techniques, the theories of Stanislavski, character analysis, and performance process. 

COM 306 Scriptwriting                                                                                                                  

3 credits An introduction to the fundamental tools and skills required to craft a script for performance on stage or in film/video. Students are expected to produce playscripts and screenplays of varying lengths; they are also expected to read and respond to one another’s writing. Some history of playwriting and study of prevailing models of scriptwriting are also included. Prerequisite: COM 216, COM 241, or ENG 205, with a minimum grade of “C.” 

COM 310 Introduction to Performance Studies                                                      

3 credits An interdisciplinary course exploring the human desire to perform in both aesthetic and everyday settings. It explores the links between the arts and literature, anthropology, communication, sociology, and philosophy. Critical reading, written analysis, and performance of literary texts are essential elements of the course. 

COM 317 Studies in Theatre and Performance                                                        

3 credits An introduction to performance studies research and artistic practice through readings, discussion and creative work. Prerequisites: junior standing and instructor permission. Repeatable for a maximum of six credits among different topic areas. 

COM 323 Media/Arts Management                                                                            

3 credits An introduction to the basic principles and structure of management as it applies to Communication Arts. Particular focus is given to management of small and mid-size non-profit media and arts organizations, and to the interrelationship between those two areas. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of the instructor. 

COM 423 Presentational Aesthetics                                                                              

3 credits An examination of the theatrical performance convention from the perspective of the adaptor, director, and performer. This course offers invigorating challenges for the director, dramaturg, actor, and designer who will work collaboratively to explore presentational mode, theatrical convention, and conscious artifice in the performance of dramatic literature, poetry, nonfiction, and prose fiction. Prerequisites: COM 231, COM 235, COM 310 and  minimum junior standing; or instructor permission. 

Two of the following:

COM 324 Advanced Acting                                                                                      

3 credits An advanced-level course that focuses on specific areas of actor training, including methods of voice and movement training; the requirements and techniques of different styles of acting including classical, Elizabethan, Restoration/18th Century, Commedia, and Advanced Contemporary acting styles; and advanced textual analysis required of actors by specific theatrical works. Repeatable for a maximum of six credits among different topic areas. Prerequisite: COM 235 

COM 327 Performers for Social Change                                                                          

3 credits An in-depth look at the role of performance, predominantly theatre, for social change and community activism. Students learn about the historical movements combining performance and social change, study the theories behind the practice influenced by Paulo Freire and Augusto Boal, and have hands-on opportunities to train their own performance and writing skills in this manner.  Prerequisite: instructor permission. 

COM 330 Technical Production II                                                                                

3 credits An intermediate-level study of lighting and sound production for theatre and film. Instruction is provided in the proper rigging of light and sound equipment, use of control consoles and software, optics, basic electrical theory, the nature of light, and acoustics. The design and aesthetic use of light and sound are also explored. Prerequisite: COM 231 or instructor permission.