About the Department of Theatre & Dance

Mission:
The Department of Theatre and Dance is dedicated to two primary goals. The first is to provide students with high caliber training in theatre and dance that prepares them to create theatre of any kind at any level. The second is to provide Southern Minnesota with a multifaceted, high quality theatrical experience. These goals interweave to provide entertainment and education to those on both sides of the curtain.

About our program:
The Department of Theatre and Dance is strongly committed to its students and to its audience. It offers the student an array of theatrical and dance opportunities exploring a wide range of dramatic literature and movement possibilities in three performance venues. Based upon a strong academic foundation, bolstered by a strong appreciation of the liberal arts, the Department literally allows students the opportunity to put their lessons into practice. This is done with the outstanding support of the local community. Over 35,000 patrons witness, support, and enjoy the Department's offerings each year, ranking it in the nation's top one percent of colleges in theatre attendance.

Production Schedule:
We present six major theatrical productions in our Mainstage Season. These productions (four shows, usually two musicals and a combination of classic, comedic and dramatic shows) are divided between the Ted Paul Theatre and the Andreas Theatre. Four smaller studio shows, selected and produced by students (with faculty advice), are presented in the Andreas Theatre. ETC Theatre is an "open stage" with up to 20 minor offerings each year. We also offer two dance concerts each academic semester in the Ted Paul Theatre. Read more about our venues.

Although the department’s Mainstage Season puts on shows that are appropriate for the whole family, most are not recommended for children under the age of five. Our studio shows are for mature audiences.

Highland Summer Theatre is our professional summer stock theatre specializing in light entertainment. Four productions are presented within a nine-week period of time using professional actors and students making their professional debuts.

Ted Paul, the "founding father" of the Department of Theatre & Dance:
Theodore Paul, Jr., who oversaw theatre as it grew into its own department in 1980, passed away on July 14, 2008. Read more about how Ted Paul impacted our University, students, and the community.