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The Old Globe/USD Graduate Theatre

Post Office Box 122171

San Diego, CA 92112-2171

Tel: 619.235.2161
 

 

Email: swride@theoldglobe.org

 

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Playing With Giants

November 6, 2018

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Course of Study


GRADUATE THEATRE LEARNING OUTCOMES:

  • Students will demonstrate the ability to apply the fundamentals of Stanislavsky’s psychological/physical technique of action to the demands of playing texts of heightened language and the regional theatre canon.

  • Students will exhibit an increased proficiency at combining full breath support, rich vocal resonation and articulation precision when speaking texts for the stage.

  • As a resource to be used for the exploration of text, character and relationships, students will become proficient at applying a variety of physical techniques to transform the body. 

  • Students will develop skills for analyzing and interpreting dramatic texts, researching literary sources and referencing stage history as fundamental tools to prepare for performance.

  • Through their work in production at the University and The Old Globe Theatre, students will develop a clear understanding and appreciation for appropriate professional conduct and behavior.

 

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE
Students are expected to complete the 60 units of graduate work for this degree in two consecutive years, according to the following schedule. All courses carry 3 units of credit.


First Year – Fall Semester (12 Units)
THEA 501– Text and Context: Modern Drama
THEA 511– Movement I
THEA 521– Acting I
THEA 541– Voice and Speech I

First Year - Spring Semester (12 Units)
THEA 502– Text and Context: Renaissance Drama
THEA 512– Movement II
THEA 522– Acting II
THEA 542– Voice and Speech II

First Year - Summer (6 Units)
THEA 506– Graduate Colloquium
THEA 531– Globe Production I

Second Year - Fall Semester (12 Units)
THEA 503– Text and Context: Classical Drama
THEA 513– Movement III
THEA 523– Acting III
THEA 543– Voice and Speech III

Second Year - Spring Semester (12 Units)
THEA 595– Thesis Project
THEA 514– Movement IV
THEA 524– Acting IV
THEA 544– Voice and Speech IV

Second Year - Summer (6 Units)
THEA 532– Globe Production II
THEA 533– Globe Production
III


 

 

The University of San Diego and the Old Globe Theatre are equally invested hosts of the Shiley Graduate Theatre Program and, as such, respect the responsibilities of the students to both institutions. Casting and understudy assignments in Globe productions may occur during the academic calendar and will happen during the summer.

 

 

Courses will be undertaken either at the Globe or at USD, under the supervision of the Director of the program with the advice and consent of the Oversight Committee for the MFA Program. Periodic evaluations, apart from the normal grading process, will help determine the advisability of students' continuing in the program.

 

 

Courses
THEA 501 TEXT AND CONTEXT: MODERN DRAMA (3)
A survey course in drama from Ibsen to the present.  Provides students with a reading background in the period
as a context for their winter and/or spring productions.

THEA 502 TEXT AND CONTEXT: RENAISSANCE DRAMA (3)
A study of the cultural background of the English Renaissance, with an emphasis upon the works of William
Shakespeare. Readings in the drama of the period may be supplemented by social, political or artistic material.

THEA 503 Text and Context : Molière and Restoration
Drama (3)
A study of the cultural background of Moliere, the Restoration and the 18th century. Readings in the drama of
these eras may be supplemented by social, historical, political or artistic material.

THEA 506 GRADUATE COLLOQUIUM (3)
Workshop exploring the particular skills required to perform a chosen genre of dramatic literature. The theatrical
genres and skills studied vary from year to year.

THEA 511 MOVEMENT I (3)
This course utilizes the concepts and theories of Laban, Bartenieff, Lessac and Michael Chekhov as the basis for
vocal/physical explorations and a foundation of a movement-based technique for the actor. Also, yoga and
private tutorials in the Alexander Technique continue throughout the program.

THEA 512 MOVEMENT II (3)
An introduction to stage combat, this course focuses on the skills needed to execute safe and dramatically effective stage
violence. Classes address the unique focus necessary for the integration of combat skills into the actor’s process.

THEA 513 MOVEMENT III (3)
This course is designed to give actors the opportunity to apply movement concepts and principles directly to their
acting process, strengthening the development of an integrated movement-based psycho-physical acting
technique.

THEA 514 MOVEMENT IV (3)
An in-depth exploration of Michael Chekhov’s psychophysical approach to acting. Classes focus on the main
concepts of the technique - Chekhov’s basic psychophysical exercises; work with qualities, sensations and
feeling, character, actions & gesture and atmosphere.

THEA 521 ACTING I (3)
An exploration of the Stanislavski technique and application of its analytical process to texts in the Modern Drama
genre. In addition, extra-curricular performance assignments will be an integral part of this and all acting
courses throughout the program.

THEA 522 ACTING II (3)
Applying techniques and exploration begun in Acting I, this course will concentrate on performance of Shakespeare and
heightened language. Students will practice techniques widely used by professionals in the performance of verse
and complex language. Individual emphasis will be placed on practicing alternative techniques that support growth
and range of performance.

THEA 523 ACTING III (3)
Students will perform scenes from a range of periods such as French neo-classical, English restoration and 19th
century. Individual emphasis will be placed on practicing alternative techniques that support growth and range of
performance.

THEA 524 ACTING IV (3)
This course is designed to develop skills in preparation for professional theatre careers. Workshops in audition
technique, monologue preparation, on-camera performance and the business of acting are taught throughout the
semester.

THEA 531 GLOBE PRODUCTION I (3)
Independent study practicum under the supervision of the Director of the program. Includes rehearsal and
performance participation, as well as discussions and seminars with professional company members at The Old
Globe Theatre. This course is pass/fail.

THEA 532 GLOBE PRODUCTION II (3)
Independent study practicum at The Old Globe under the supervision of the Director of the program. This course is
Pass/Fail.

THEA 533 GLOBE PRODUCTION III (3)
Independent study practicum at The Old Globe under the supervision of the Director of the program. This course is
Pass/Fail.

THEA 541 VOICE AND SPEECH I (3)
As preparation for professional theatre performance, this course develops awareness and health of the vocal
instrument and builds skill in breath support, rich vocal resonation, precise articulation, stage worthy vocal
presence, the International Phonetic Alphabet, scansion and the speaking of rhetoric.

THEA 542 VOICE AND SPEECH II (3)
Exercises are further developed into individually designed vocal warm-ups. The IPA is now used to identify and
differentiate the speech styles of: “General American” “Standard American” and “Standard English.”

THEA 543 VOICE AND SPEECH III (3)
Focuses on The Four Components of Voice: Quality, Force, Time and Pitch. Students practice and perform speeches
from Shakespeare and contemporary plays, to speak with variety, specificity, expressiveness and intention.

THEA 544 VOICE AND SPEECH IV (3)
Stage Dialects and Accents - this course provides practice in the process of identifying, analyzing and learning to speak
English with the appearance of an authentic dialect or accent for performance. Studies include phonetic sound
changes, pitch patterns, rhythms and speeds, tone placements and cultural expectations of those societies.

THEA 595 TEXT AND CONTEXT: THESIS PROJECT (3)
Workshop dedicated to producing the program thesis, an original solo performance piece. Coursework includes
research, writing and rehearsal.

 

 

Brian Ibsen (MFA '02), Clark Thorell, and Harry Groener in Jack O'Brien's production of TWELFTH NIGHT. Photo: Craig Schwartz