Theatre & Dance Studies, fall 2012

Theatre and Dance at Wheaton

The Department of Theatre and Dance Studies offers students a wide array of courses in acting, directing, theatre design and history, dance, dramatic literature, playwriting and film theory. Central to the department’s mission are the development of communication skills—both oral and written—careful attention to how theatre and dance function as collaborative art forms, and an emphasis on theatre and dance as windows to diverse cultures, lifestyles and intellectual perspectives.

Theatre fits with the liberal arts education and is an ideal microcosm of the liberal arts practice.  It is a point of intersection and mediation between any and all other liberal arts disciplines, and it does its work by socializing and humanizing content that may otherwise be deprived of those qualities. In fact, it is that deprivation that is so often the impetus for a piece of theatre. We try to give a social and moral voice to content that has in one way or another had its soul denied or perverted. The content’s native origin may not even have the vocabulary to initiate that discourse, let alone the desire, but good theatre has both. Other art forms can do that too, but theatre/performance is the most social way.