The professional field of theatrical arts is a broad one, encompassing professions related to performance, direction, design and management. Acting opportunities include stage positions in television and movies, as well as community theater, recreational theater, educational theater, theme parks and children's theater. The skills needed in this field are theatrical knowledge, team collaboration, creativity and problem solving. Actors communicate characters and situations to the audience through dialogue, body language and actions.
Dancers use movement to perform music, tell stories and express emotions. Musical theater artists are often “triple threats”: they are experts at singing, dancing and acting. Theater directors bring screenplays to life on stage and work closely with everyone involved to create a show that connects with the public. Visual and performing arts students can make creativity a career by studying theater, music, design, studio art, choreography and more.
Theatrical art professionals often work intermittently and wait long periods to work. Because of the stiff competition for professional positions, formal training and professional connections are increasingly necessary to obtain positions in this field. You're more likely to find work as a dancer if you can perform in a variety of styles. To become a theater director, you must try to make yourself indispensable to your local theater as an assistant, perhaps starting with an amateur theater group and working your way up.
If you want to teach at a college or university, you'll need a master's degree in arts or a master's degree in fine arts. Riverside, California is home to many schools offering degrees in theatre arts. Founded in 1866, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) is one of the most historically important independent schools of art and design in the world. The College of the Holy Cross is a liberal arts college in Worcester and the oldest Roman Catholic school in New England. Harvard College is an undergraduate liberal arts school located in Cambridge, MA, within Harvard University.
Stonehill awards bachelor's degrees in more than 80 academic programs and all students must participate in a liberal arts curriculum. The University of the Southeast is a Christ-centered liberal arts university in central Florida affiliated with the Assemblies of God Church. Longwood University is a 4-year public liberal arts university in central Virginia and one of the oldest universities in the United States. Bowdoin College is a 4-year liberal arts college on the coast of Maine.
Point Loma Nazarene University is a Christian liberal arts university in San Diego founded by the Church of the Nazarene in 1902. Although a university degree is not necessary for a career in theater, it does provide you with an excellent education in liberal arts, performing speech and movement, direction, writing plays, theater production, theater design and history, as well as in acting. With determination, talent and passion for what you do, you can succeed as a theatrical artist if you gain experience, establish connections in the industry and continue to challenge yourself to develop your existing skills.