What Is Theater?
The fun part of majoring in Theater Arts is that you don’t just learn in the classroom. You also learn backstage and on stage! You’ll learn about all the different kinds of plays there are, while both reading and writing some of them. You’ll learn about improv and what it takes to be spontaneous in the moment. You’ll listen, read, build sets, and act in various roles. You’ll spend time preparing for roles, getting to know not just what the playwright intended but also develop your own interpretation of the character you play. And many people in the field say that you also get to know yourself better than ever. But, it’s not all fun and games. Putting on a theater production is a lot of work—there’s a lot to be done before the tickets are even sold with many hours spent in rehearsals leading up to opening night. Are you ready to work hard? You’ll need to study all aspects of the production like costumes, sets, lights, sound, everything that’s needed to support the actors’ performances and the story to be told. Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?
If you feel that you’re creative, somewhat organized, and willing to work long and hard, check out this field. There’s probably a niche for you someplace; and, once theater gets in your blood, your life will be changed forever . . . in a good way. Here’s an important tip though: Learn about all aspects of theater production, because there might not be a role for you in a particular play. You need to be able to do a variety of things behind the scenes to be employed consistently. Also, hang out with students and people in all different areas because you may be writing or acting in a play some day for a character who is a business executive or a politician or a teacher. The broader your knowledge and skills the better, even though you might want to just hang out with theater people all the time. Jobs you might find are Actor, Model, Director, Producer, Lighting Designer, Set Designer, Sound Designer, Props Master, Make-up Artist, and Costume Designer.