Announcing New Contemporary Theater Degree

October 14, 2014

The Boston Conservatory is now accepting applications for the first class of its cutting-edge Bachelor of Fine Arts in Contemporary Theater. The B.F.A. in contemporary theater provides ensemble-based training focused on creating and developing new work for the 21st-century theater environment. The first classes begin in the fall of 2015; applications are due by December 1, 2014. 

The contemporary theater program is part of the Boston Conservatory’s new Conservatory College, which offers degrees that are supported by the Conservatory’s core performance disciplines of music, dance and musical theater. It is a full-time, residential program and will enroll approximately 16 students per year. Students will undergo rigorous training in ensemble-based acting and performance techniques, and they will study directing, playwriting, dramaturgy and elements of design. There will also be a strong academic component to the degree, including core courses in the humanities and sciences, which will ensure students have the knowledge and resources to thoughtfully create new works for the stage. 

“Graduates of this program will be ready to meet the challenges of today’s theater landscape,” said Wanda Strukus, Ph.D., program director, who has an extensive career as a director, choreographer, playwright and teacher. “They will be able to apply the skills they learn here to a wide range of theater-making opportunities, including forming their own companies, performing in or directing contemporary productions, participating in multimedia and multidisciplinary collaborations and making theater with youth or social justice organizations. Our students will have the creative and entrepreneurial know-how to create and follow their own artistic paths and become a vibrant force in 21st-century theater-making.” 

In addition to their coursework, students in the B.F.A. in contemporary theater program will create and perform new works, including devised theater pieces, documentary theater, site-specific performances, new plays and contemporary adaptations of classic plays. Other unique aspects of the program include students touring a production to national or international fringe festivals during their junior year and pursuing an independent study or creative project for their senior capstone. 

“The theater artist of today is a collaborative story-maker,” said Strukus. “Creating with an ensemble allows many voices from different backgrounds to come together to tell a story. The final product is a reflection of those many voices and a reflection of our world. That’s what makes this type of work so interesting, and that’s why more and more professional companies are taking a collaborative approach to making theater.” 

Learn more about the Boston Conservatory's B.F.A. in Contemporary Theater program.

 

The Boston Conservatory Launches New

B.F.A. in Multidisciplinary Stage Management

 Accepting Applications Now for Inaugural Class 

BOSTON, MA (Oct. 15, 2014)—The Boston Conservatory is now accepting applications for the first incoming class of its cutting-edge Bachelor of Fine Arts in Multidisciplinary Stage Management (50.57.69.206/stage-management) program. With an emphasis on the artistry of stage management, as well as the highest level of hands-on training in all types of performance art at the Conservatory, the B.F.A. in multidisciplinary stage management program is in a class of its own. The first classes begin in the fall of 2015; applications are due by Dec. 1, 2014. 

The stage management program is part of The Boston Conservatory’s new Conservatory College division, which offers degrees that are supported by the Conservatory’s core performance disciplines of music, dance and musical theater. It is a full-time, residential program and will accept approximately eight students per year. Students will take stage management courses, as well as courses in each stage discipline: dance, musical theater, opera and music management. Students will also take basic acting, directing, dance and music history classes so that they learn the aesthetics and language of each type of performance. Students will learn how to call shows of all types; take arts administration courses to help them understand greater context; and learn the skills of both production management and negotiation. 

“There is a true artistry to stage management,” said Abbie H. Katz, program director, who has more than 20 years of stage management experience in venues around the world. “You can make or kill a laugh, depending on when you call a cue. Not only must a stage manager understand the artistic vision of the director, he or she needs to know how to maintain that vision and let it grow. And, most importantly, he or she must inspire the actors and crew to see every single moment, direction and cue as being crucial to that ultimate creative vision.” 

In addition to the coursework, the B.F.A. in multidisciplinary stage management program will also involve a significant amount of hands-on training and at a caliber that only a conservatory environment can provide. During the first two years of the program, students will work on all different types of productions, including dance, theater, musical theater, opera and music management, to name a few. For the second two years of the program, students will have internships working on professional shows in and around Boston. 

"This program offers the opportunity for students to learn every modality,” said Katz, who notes that most programs train stage managers in one mode only. “Whatever path the graduates of this program head down, they’ll be able to handle it.” 

Please note: Since this article was written, the B.F.A. in Multidisciplinary Stage Management has been discontinued.

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