Theatre is a collaborative art form. To perform is to step into the shoes of a character, to let go of inhibitions, and to dwell in a cooperative space.

Why study theatre at Sewanee?

Majoring in theatre at Sewanee will give you a strong foundation in all areas of study: acting, directing, design, history, and theory. You’ll expand your knowledge and experience by actively participating in full-production programs. You’ll also be encouraged to supplement your learning with complementary courses in other departments like English and psychology.

Competence on stage and behind the scenes and collaboration with your cast and crew exhibit more than just an understanding of theatre—they demonstrate the mastery of skills needed to live well in community with others. Here at Sewanee, theatre can help you be successful in life both on and off the stage.

FIRST DESTINATIONS: Theatre MAJORS

Sewanee graduates secure positions in a variety of fields. Some you would expect, others, are a bit of a surprise. Sewanee prepares you for your profession and your passion. Below is a sampling of recent graduates' first jobs.

  • Actor, Tennessee Shakespeare Company, Germantown, Tennessee.
  • Brand planning intern, The Richards Group, Dallas, Texas.
  • Choreographer and head of movement/fight, Merrie Woode, Sapphire, North Carolina.
FELLOWSHIP IN THE ARTS

Students with exceptional promise in performing or studio arts can apply for a Fellowship in the Arts. These fellowships range in value and are renewable for four years.

Recent Productions

22-23Theatre

Let the Dream Begin

Sewanee theatre grad Jordan Craig, C’11, was on the verge of giving up acting. Then the Phantom called.

Jordan Craig, C’11, was on his way to a job interview when he got the phone call of a lifetime. At the time, he was working two jobs and was on a crowded bus in New York City en route to an interview for a third job when he answered a call from his agent. 

“My agent calls and asks what I’m doing,” Jordan says. “I’m a little discouraged at this point—almost ready to give up theatre altogether. Then my agent asks, ‘Would you rather not be going to that interview? How would you like to be in The Phantom of the Opera instead?’ I can’t remember exactly what happened in that moment, but I remember screaming in excitement and jumping off the bus at the next stop. Needless to say, I didn’t make it to that interview.”

Read More

A Sampling of Courses

Theatre

Requirements & Related Programs

Requirements for the Major & Minor in Theatre

Requirements for the Minor in Dance | Website

Meet Some Professors

Contact

James crawford
Professor and chair of Theatre

jscrawfo@sewanee.edu

Tennessee Williams Center 111, Ext. 1303

Meet Cameron Noel, C'21

Theatre major, dance minor, second-year MFA student in playwriting at Southern Illinois University and winner of the Christian H. Moe Playwriting Award for Best Short Play

When it comes to playwriting, my mind is like a locomotive going off the tracks. I'm constantly coming up with new ideas or writing down lines in the Notes app on my phone. I'll be at the grocery store picking up a package of ground beef and suddenly be like, "I know how to end this scene!"; One lesson from Professor Elyzabeth Wilder's advanced playwriting class at Sewanee has always stayed with me-when you're writing a play or you're coming up with a concept for a play, you have to ask, "Why tell this story now?" It makes sure your play has a point of view.

Hearing actors read one of my plays is both nerve-wracking and my favorite part. If there's a typo anywhere in there, they'll find it. But the really scary part is that you never know if what is in your mind is translating to the page. I've never thought of myself as a comedic writer, so it's surprising and rewarding whenever I write a joke on the page, an actor reads it, and the people in the room actually laugh. I also love it when I have a talkback after a performance or workshop and someone says, "I noticed you did this deeply symbolic thing or made this historical reference."  And I'll just sit back and say, "I had no idea. That was not on purpose, but yes, absolutely. You saw something in it, so I'm going to claim it. Thank you so much."

As artists, we always bring a part of ourselves to the work. I am interested in telling authentic Black and queer stories-I'm a gay Black man, so those stories are very important to me. I would often look at so many plays and movies and find myself complaining, "Where are the characters who look like me?"  And I thought, "Well, if you don't like what you're seeing, then go write what you do want to see." People of color and members of marginalized communities are so multifaceted, and there's so much room for creativity and so many untapped narrative possibilities. I want to take what I've learned and write those stories for my community.

Performances

Connecting the Dots