Theater Courses


Introduction to Art Making

LCA 101 · Spring 2018

C01 · Mondays & Wednesdays, 11:00 am - 12:20 pm

Instructors: Aynsley Vandenbroucke · Boris Fishman · Daniel Heyman · Jane Cox · Ruth Ochs · Susan Wheeler

How do artists make art? How do we evaluate it? In this course, students of all levels get to experience firsthand the particular challenges and rewards of art making through practical engagement with five fields — creative writing, visual art, theater, dance, and music — under the guidance of professionals.

Performing Arts and/as Civic Engagement

FRS 136 · Spring 2018

S01 · Mondays, 1:30-4:20 pm

Instructors: Erica Nagel

How can someone who loves the performing arts, but is also committed to civic engagement find a path to meaningfully combine their interests and use their artistic gifts in service to their communities? Throughout the course, students will be asked to read and think critically about the role of performing arts in society, explore and develop their own notion of civically-engaged art making, and consider the responsibility of theatre artists to address questions of civic engagement and service.

Beginning Studies in Acting

THR 201 · Spring 2018

C01 - Peter Kim · Tuesdays, 2:30 - 4:20 pm and Thursdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Peter Kim

An introduction to the craft of acting through scene study monologues and, finally, a longer scene drawn from a play, to develop a method of working on a script. Emphasis will be placed on honesty, spontaneity, and establishing a personal connection with the scene's substance.

Learning Shakespeare by Doing

COM 212 / THR 212 / ENG 425 · Spring 2018

S01 · Tuesdays & Thursdays, 11:00 am - 12:20 pm

Instructors: Leonard Barkan

A course on works of dramatic literature whose comparative dimension is theatrical performance. We will consider four Shakespeare plays covering a range of theatrical genres; the emphasis will be on the ways in which Shakespearean meaning can be elucidated when the reader becomes a performer. Students will move from the reading/performing of individual speeches to the staging of scenes to the question of how an overall theatrical conception for a play might be a key to the fullest understanding of the text. Students will write papers about their readings and performances; grades will be based on both the writing and the performing.

The Art of Speaking

THR 214 · Spring 2018

C01 · Wednesdays & Fridays, 11:00 am - 12:20 pm

Instructors: Elena Araoz

As a working laboratory with daily practice, we study the art of confidence and charisma, the anatomy of vocal production, how breath and articulation express action and emotion, how language and punctuation are a roadmap to communication, dispelling fears, and the strengths of vocal idiosyncrasies.

Being and Doing: Dance for Every Body

DAN 214 / THR 215 · Spring 2018

U01 · Tuesdays & Thursdays, 2:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Aynsley Vandenbroucke

This studio course is open to beginning and advanced dancers. We'll explore dance as a way to deepen both our self-knowledge and engagement with others.


DAN 216 / THR 216 · Spring 2018

U01 · Tuesdays & Thursdays 12:30 - 2:20 pm

Instructors: Aynsley Vandenbroucke

In this studio course open to all, we’ll ramble in the unknown searching for embodied philosophy, thinking art-making, and clarity that’s open for revision.

Performing in the Ancient World

CLA 221 / THR 221 · Spring 2018

S01 · Mondays & Wednesdays, 3:00-4:20 pm

Instructors: Hanna Golab

From epic bards, drinking songs, and classical tragedies to judicial speeches, funeral comedies and gladiators - ancient Greece and Rome knew how to put on a show! We will cover the most important performative genres of antiquity. We will read texts from the archaic to the Roman Imperial period in English translation, paying special attention to the reconstruction of their performance and cultural contexts. We will also listen to modern reconstructions of ancient music and look at ancient art representing various types of spectacles. The course also introduces occasional comparative material from other cultures, ancient and modern.

Playwriting II: Intermediate Playwriting

THR 305 · Spring 2018

S01 · Thursdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Migdalia Cruz

A continuation of work begun in Introductory Playwriting. In this class, students will complete either one full-length play or two long one-acts (40-60 pages) to the end of gaining a firmer understanding of characterization, dialogue, structure, and the playwriting process.

Advanced French Theater Workshop

FRE 311 / THR 312 · Spring 2018

Multiple sections offered

Instructors: Florent Masse · Guillaume Gallienne

The Advanced French Theater Workshop will exceptionally be co-taught by the Comédie-Française's leading actor Guillaume Gallienne and Florent Masse. Students will rehearse and perform excerpts from the works of Racine, Marivaux, Musset and Claudel. In doing so, they will focus on love, passion, and desire, as unifying themes in French Theater.

Dance in Education: Dance/Theater Pedagogy

DAN 316 / THR 328 / HUM 317 / TPP 316 · Spring 2018

S01 · Fridays, 10:00 am - 12:50 pm

Instructors: Rebecca Stenn

Dance/Theater Pedagogy Seminar explores the connection between engaged dance and elementary school literacy, mathematics and social studies while allowing students the opportunity to be civically engaged and contribute to the community.

Lighting Design

THR 318 / VIS 318 · Spring 2018

C01 · Wednesdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Jane Cox

An introduction to the art and craft of lighting design for the stage and an exploration of light as a medium for expression.

Sound Design

THR 320 / MTD 320 · Spring 2018

S01 - Robert Kaplowitz · Tuesdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Joanna Staub · Robert Kaplowitz

An exploration of theatrical sound design and engineering, this class will explore sound for both theater and music theater. We will investigate text from the point of view of sound, and learn how to communicate the ideas, palette and arc of a design to others. We will explore developing a creative process and turning our ideas into sounds that can be used onstage.

Contemporary Opera and Music Theater

MUS 325 / THR 346 / MTD 325 · Spring 2018

S01 · Thursdays, 1:30-4:20 pm

Instructors: Andrew Lovett

A Viking saga, a mad king, a vengeful husband: these are a few of the characters that we encounter in recent small-scale operas (or 'music-theater' works). They give us a starting point for considering how we tell stories in opera. We will look at the music, the staging and the performance and the ways these elements come together to provide a unified artistic work. Students will be encouraged to respond creatively through writing about the work, or musical composition or developing a particular performance idea. The course will be graded on a final project of the student's choice.

Movements for Diversity in American Theater

THR 332 / AMS 346 / GSS 342 / LAO 332 · Spring 2018

S01 · Tuesdays, 1:30 - 4:20 p.m.

Instructors: Brian Herrera

Theater artists routinely bend, twist and break all kinds of rules to create the imaginary worlds they bring to life on stage. Why, then, has the American theater so struggled to meaningfully address questions of equity, diversity and inclusion? In this course, we undertake a critical, creative and historical overview of agitation and advocacy by theater artist-activists aiming to transform American theatre-making as both industry and creative practice, as we connect those histories with the practices, structures and events determining the ways diversity is (and is not) a guiding principle of contemporary American theater.

Acting and Directing in Musical Theater

MTD 341 / THR 341 · Spring 2018

S01 · Mondays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Ethan Heard · Stanley Bahorek

A practical hands-on introduction to acting and directing in musical theater. The course will require students to prepare songs and scenes from selected musicals with an eye to how best to approach the particular challenges the scene presents.

Bernard Shaw: Theater, Sex and Celebrity

THR 348 / ENG 448 · Spring 2018

S01 · Wednesdays, 1:30-4:20 pm

Instructors: Fintan O'Toole

In 2016, Bob Dylan became the second person to win both an Oscar and a Nobel Prize. The first was Bernard Shaw, arguably the first private individual in history to create a global personal brand: GBS was instantly recognizable from Shanghai to New York. In this course, we follow Shaw's career as the creator of Pygmalion, Man and Superman, Major Barbara and St Joan, see and review My Fair Lady on Broadway and explore his use of celebrity to unsettle and challenge his audiences.

How to Think With Performance: Dance and Performance Studies Theory

DAN 349 / THR 349 · Spring 2018

S01 · Thursdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Judith Hamera

The interdisciplinary field of performance studies offers generative strategies for theorizing social life. This course explores the ways performance as a critical theoretical tool and as a practice enables students to examine everyday self-presentation, political economy, gender, race, and sexuality, material culture, ethics, and other social practices.

Playing Dead: Corpses in Theater and Cinema

THR 350 / ENG 449 · Spring 2018

S01 · Thursdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Fintan O'Toole

In this course, we contemplate corpses from Antigone to Alfred Hitchcock and from Shakespeare's tragedies to Stand By Me and Weekend at Bernie's and bring the dead to life.

Contemporary Drama

ENG 372 / THR 372 · Spring 2018

L01 · Mondays & Wednesdays, 11:00 am - 12:20 pm

Instructors: Tamsen Wolff

This course will look at a range of British and American drama from the second half of the twentieth century to the twenty-first, with an emphasis on the developments of the last twenty years.

Curious Aesthetics: Twentieth-Century American Musical Theatre

ENG 376 / THR 376 · Spring 2018

S01 · Tuesdays, 1:30-4:20 pm

Instructors: Tamsen Wolff

The musical possesses unique conventions of form and narrative. Focusing primarily on the American musical post-WWII, this course will look at the phenomenon of musical theatre, analyzing musicals both as texts and as performances.

Performing the City: Race and Protest in 1960s Trenton and Princeton

AMS 395 / THR 395 / AAS 395 / HIS 296 · Spring 2018

S01 · Wednesdays, 1:30-4:20 pm

Instructors: Aaron Landsman · Alison Isenberg

Through original research and creative process, this seminar immerses students in overlapping histories of race, protest, political mobilization and violence in 1960s Trenton and Princeton. Students will contribute to an archive, conduct interviews and make maps, and then use their research to create performance walks on campus and in Trenton. By combining disciplines, the course addresses questions such as: How can we change a place by walking through it with new knowledge? How do the imprints of various, even conflicting histories, impact the built environment? After the semester, students' final project tours will be offered regularly.

Advanced Studies in Acting: Scene Study and Style

THR 401 · Spring 2018

C01 · Tuesdays, 1:30 - 3:20 pm and Thursdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Robert N. Sandberg

In the 20th and 21st centuries, playwrights such as Brecht, Beckett, Churchill and Jacob-Jenkins have written plays that challenged conventional notions of how theater works. This course is a scene study class in which we'll explore a variety of ways to act these plays.

Theater Making Studio

THR 402 / MTD 402 · Spring 2018

C01 · Mondays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: John Doyle

This course explores theories and practices in contemporary theater making, and will be a workshop of ideas for junior theater certificate students in preparation for their final year. We will examine questions such as: what are the differences between process and product, what is collaboration, where does the audience fit in to the creative journey. We will investigate different approaches to theater making. The course will incorporate practical exercises, seminar discussions and visits to rehearsal at Classic Stage Company in NYC.

Theater Rehearsal and Performance

THR 451 / MTD 451 · Spring 2018

S01 · Fridays, 12:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Elena Araoz

This course provides students with a rigorous and challenging experience of creating theater under near-professional circumstances.

Grandma’s Russian Painting: A New Performative Installation

ATL 495 / VIS 495 / MTD 495 / THR 495 · Spring 2018

S01 · Tuesdays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm

Instructors: Basil Twist · Ljova Zhurbin

This course is centered around the development of a new performative installation by puppeteer Basil Twist entitled ‘Grandma’s Russian Painting’ inspired by childhood memories of an elaborate painting Twist’s grandmother had near her swimming pool in the desert.