Skip to main content.

Theatre BFA - Theatre Performance

(HEGIS: 10.07 DRAMATIC ARTS, CIP: 50.0501 Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts, General)

Department of Theatre and Dance

285 Alumni Arena
North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260-5030

Anne Burnidge
Chair, Department of Theatre & Dance

Veronica Sedota
Assistant to the Chair

Associated Programs

Associated Subjects

Why study Theatre BFA - Theatre Performance at UB?

The Theatre Performance BFA, at UB integrates rigorous training, critical understanding and impassioned creation supported by close faculty mentorship and developed collaboration with internationally recognized guest artists. Our Theatre BFA students train in a comprehensive four-year sequence that provides the range of skill sets and experiential opportunities necessary for success in the increasingly competitive and challenging world of professional theatre.  Learning within conservatory style courses and grounded in the liberal arts, students acquire the essential skills for effective communication, collaborative problem-solving and critical thinking in an increasingly diverse and interconnected world. In addition, our students are an integral part of the department’s season of fully produced plays, musicals, and experimental performance work. Their research and creative activities involve on and off-campus experiences, and hold to professional union theatre criterion, preparing them for professional careers in the field.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of all requirements, the student will have knowledge to:

  • Identify major figures and events from theatre history, theory and criticism;
  • Define and use appropriate critical vocabulary of theatre arts, including script analysis, acting, and design terminology
  • Critically read, interpret, and evaluate a range of representative plays and situate representative plays and performance events within larger cultural and historical movements
  • Construct and articulate in speech and writing a compelling thesis about theatre history, literature, or theory using acquired research skills and critical vocabulary;
  • Integrate the concerns of actors, directors, and designers into a collaborative creative process, both in the creation of extant plays and original work;
  • Demonstrate the ability to conceive and execute an original performance, either solo or in a collaborative process.

The Learning Environment

The Department of Theatre & Dance offers a comprehensive catalog of courses including seminar-based instruction, studio training, and hands-on mentoring through experiential learning opportunities. All modes seek to integrate theoretical and practical instruction. Seminar and lecture courses, ranging from 20 to 100 seats, engage students in discussion on historical trends, contemporary practice, philosophical and aesthetic principles, criticism and analysis, and technical skills. Studio courses apply theory to technique in small, practice-based classes ranging from 16 to 28. Coursework often includes attendance at live performances as well participation in live production, and contributes to the development of professional portfolios, performance reels, and academic resumes. Practicums, tutorials, and independent studies supplement classwork with focused, in-depth exploration of the discipline through close mentorship with faculty and guest artists.

About Our Facilities

UB’s Department of Theatre & Dance boasts an array of resources for both instruction and practical preparation for productions, including performance and classroom space in the Center for the Arts on UB’s North Campus. Within the CFA students directly benefit from the use of:

  • The Drama Theatre: a 388-seat theatre 
  • The Black Box Theatre: a flexible space with seating of 100-120
  • Rehearsal Workshop: a mirror image of the Black Box Theater used for acting classes and rehearsals
  • Dance Studios: 4 spacious studios with full-length mirrors, Marley floors, and specially designed sound systems
  • Scene Shop
  • Costume Shop
  • Craft Studio
  • Katharine Cornell Theatre: a unique performance space that functions as a rehearsal room, acting classroom and performance venue.
  • Alumni Arena: includes the Design Suite with drafting studio, lighting lab and 10-seat computer lab; an acting classroom and rehearsal space; dance studio; a seminar room; and departmental offices.

About Our Faculty

In Theatre & Dance you will study with active practitioners and internationally recognized scholars who are dedicated to the development of the next generation of theatre and dance artists, teachers, and supporters. UB’s Theatre & Dance Faculty are members of professional networks including Actor’s Equity Association, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, American Society for Theatre Research, Dance Masters of America, Folger Institute,  International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, International University Theatre Association,  National Dance Education Organization, Stage Actors Guild, and United Scenic Artists. They have extensive professional experience in directing, designing, dramaturgy, and performance on and off Broadway, on regional stages, in major dance festivals, in documentaries, and in film and television work. Twenty-five full time faculty members along with adjuncts from the professional community, production staff, and Teaching Assistants from our graduate programs in support our undergraduate programs.

Faculty List Directory

Please visit the Department of Theatre and Dance website for additional information about our faculty.

Career Outlook

The skills required for success in the performing arts are broadly applicable across a range of professional careers. Our graduates work in film, television, and a wide array of live events. Many are awarded fellowships and assistantships to prestigious graduate programs across the country.

  • Actor
  • Agent: Theatrical, Film and Television
  • Artistic Director
  • Arts Manager
  • Casting Director
  • College Professor/Academia
  • Company Director/Artistic Director
  • Director: Stage, Film, Media Entertainment
  • Dramatic Coach
  • Dramaturge: Stage and Media (i.e., film, video games, theme park entertainment)
  • Educator
  • Entertainment Journalist
  • Executive Director, Arts and Cultural Organizations
  • Law
  • Presentation Consultant
  • Producer
  • Production Manager
  • Theatre Critic

Recent graduates have appeared in Broadway, Off-Broadway and regional theatre productions and have been featured on CBS's Person of Interest, NBC’s Smash, among many others. Others perform with major companies across Europe.

Academic Advising

First semester students are required to meet with their academic advisor. All students are expected to meet with their departmental advisor each semester to ensure progress toward degree. In addition to the major advisor, students meet with an academic advisor through the College of Arts & Sciences regarding general education requirements. Area Directors also provide close mentorship and oversight of students’ schedules, academic and artistic progress, and professional development.

Prospective majors should also arrange for an interview with the department academic advisor to ensure they are taking courses in the proper sequence and to obtain the most benefit from departmental advisement.

Academic Advising Contact Information

Email Department of Theater and Dance

Scholarships and Financial Support

Students in this program may qualify for scholarships and financial support from a number of sources, including:

  • UB Financial Aid, including Scholarships
  • Nationally Competitive Fellowships and Scholarships
  • UB College of Arts and Sciences Scholarships and Awards
  • UB Experience Learning Network project and conference funding
  • UB Study Abroad
  • Stanley Travis Award
  • The Perry Watkins Scholarship is available to African American freshman students majoring in design/technology

Associated Programs

Associated Subjects

Published: Feb 01, 2023 08:51:15