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Theatre & Music Theatre Department

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Theatre Student Handbook

Graduate Skills Inventory

Based on our departmental course goals and objectives, the theatre faculty assumes that every student graduating from Viterbo University with a degree in theatre arts should have a theoretical and practical comprehension and application in the following theatre-related skill areas: 

Critical Thinking Skills 

Theatre Arts graduates will be able to: 

  • read, analyze, comprehend, and interpret dramatic texts from a variety of historical periods and cultures in terms of their plot, character, themes, diction, music and spectacle;
  • identify and compare the lives, works, and influences of representative theatre artists in various world cultures and historical periods;
  • research, describe, and evaluate the validity and practicality of historical and symbolic clues in dramatic texts and other primary theatre documents to assist in making artistic conclusions and choices in the classroom and production;
  • analyze, compare, and evaluate the aesthetic and production values of theatrical art in a variety of styles, periods, and forms;
  • analyze, explore, and apply a variety of effective research and critical thinking models useful in creating finished theatre products, both conceptualized and realized;
  • use appropriate tools, methods, and methods to safely and effectively solve a variety of design and construction problems related to technical theatre, including scenic, costume, make-up, and lighting areas;
  • effectively utilize and apply effective and meaningful script analysis and group leadership models in the directing situation;
  • apply problem-solving skills in a variety of theatrical situations, both in the classroom and in a production situation.

Communication Skills 

Theatre Arts graduates will be able to: 

  • investigate and apply effective verbal and non-verbal communication skills useful in the daily production process, as well as in creating meaningful and understood characters on the stage;
  • critically respond in both oral and written forms to a variety of theatrical experiences, productions, and artistic processes;
  • critique the parts and whole of dramatic performances taking into account the text, context, and style of a piece, while constructively suggesting alternative artistic options and choices;
  • create and sustain characters and/or visual design components that communicate meaning, emotion, tone, attitude, purpose, and objective to an audience;
  • listen with an open and informed mind to theatrical performances and critiques, and responds with respect for the art and those involved in its creation;
  • effectively create and share a conceptual vision or interpretation of a dramatic text with actors and technicians involved in the production process;
  • effectively communicate using appropriate organization and terminology to effect plans of action for using the tools and materials of the theatre craft;
  • demonstrate the ability to read and interpret graphic information in the form of ground plans, designs, renderings, working drawings, and other technical theatre illustrations.

Life Value Skills 

Theatre Arts graduates will be able to: 

  • show a willingness and ability to integrate personal life values and beliefs into the course work and productions in a professional manner;
  • identify personal and cultural values, and utilize this knowledge and understanding in the creation of theatrical art products, both in performance and technical avenues;
  • analyze, evaluate, and respond to the ethical issues found in dramatic literature and live performance from an informed personal value system;
  • attempt to comprehend the life values and beliefs which have guided theatre producers in a variety of cultures and time period;
  • identify and explore personal areas of preference, expertise, talent, skill, and joy within the field of theatre arts;
  • understand the importance of a healthy mind, body, and spirit in the creation of artistic expression.

Aesthetic Skills 

Theatre Arts graduates will be able to: 

  • construct and share informed responses to theatrical works and to the artistic dimensions of the surrounding world which is reflected in the living theatre;
  • explain and justify selections of texts, interpretation, and visual and aural artistic choices in the production of theatre products in the classroom and production laboratories;
  • articulate, explain, and apply personal aesthetic criteria for evaluating aspects of the theatrical production, ranging from acting to design and technology;
  • compare and discuss the unique interpretive and expressive natures and aesthetic qualities of a variety of performance styles and dramatic texts, both historical and contemporary in nature.

Cultural Skills 

Theatre Arts graduates will be able to: 

  • understand theatre as a reflection of the culture and age which creates it;
  • recognize and explore the diversity of life experiences through encountering the multiple "voices" found in dramatic literature and staged performance;
  • demonstrate knowledge of signs and symbols used by our own and other cultures in communicating human thought, ideals, and values through a theatrical medium;
  • participate in theatrical productions and activities which allow them to "step into" and reflect the hearts, minds, emotions, and life-experience of others through acting, role-playing, and visual representation;
  • research, analyze, and respond thoughtfully and creatively to the cultural, historical, and symbolic clues in dramatic and other primary theatre texts to assist them in making artistic choices for live performance/production;
  • analyze the relationship between cultural values, freedom of artistic expression, ethics, and artistic choices in various cultures and historical periods.

Community Skills 

Theatre Arts graduates will be able to: 

  • cooperate and collaborate with members of the production community in creating an organized, meaningful, artistic product for sharing with a greater audience;
  • demonstrate the skills of interdependent group participation decision making, and conflict management in the theatre production process;
  • provide a service to the community by volunteering time, energy, insights, ideas, and creativity to the public production experience;
  • develop an awareness of the needs of the department and its productions within the framework of a larger social and theatre community;
  • establish a pattern of dedication, commitment, leadership, and service to theatre and social organizations, realizing the importance of these attitudes in the effective completion of many tasks or projects.
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