Majors & Programs
The Department of Theatre is committed to the artistic and academic success of its students. The Department offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Theatre and a Bachelor of Arts (BA) with concentrations in either performance or technology. Our comprehensive degree programs are designed for the student seeking careers as professional actors, designers, and for the student seeking advanced degrees.
The BA degree in Theatre will provide students with a well-rounded structure and background in liberal arts as well as extensive studies in various aspects of theatre. The BA curriculum is structured to allow students to minor in other subjects of interest as well as double-major. This degree is well accepted if the student actor plans to attend graduate school.
The BFA degree is a pre-professional degree, dedicated to training and preparing students for a professional career in theatre that is competitive with current industry standards. A JU Theatre Major has opportunities to perform major roles for the stage beginning in his/her first year at college and set/lighting design students will see their work produced on our main stage as early as his/her junior year. Our students enjoy small class sizes, one on one instruction, hands-on experience, individual mentoring and a high degree of professionalism.
Entrance into the BFA program requires an audition, portfolio review or letters of recommendations from peers.
Potential Career Pathways
Several past Jacksonville University Theatre majors enjoy successful careers in the entertainment industry. Among them are:
- Broadway stage veteran Terrence Mann (Javert in “Les Miserables”, the beast in “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast”, King Arthur in the recent Broadway revival of “Pippin”)
- Jay Thomas, award-winning actor who starred on network television in “Murphy Brown”, and in the hit movie “Mr. Holland’s Opus”
- Leanza Cornett, Miss America 1993 and Lifetime Network television personality
- Shawnae Jebbia, recent Miss USA and an ESPY television personality
- Milt Skelton, a Second City TV alumnus and owner/operator of a Chicago community theater
- Bruce Helford, executive producer of hit TV shows including “Roseanne” and “The Drew Carey Show”