Department of Theatre and Dance


James Fay, Associate Professor; Chairperson
M.F.A., Tulane University 
Rita Csapo-Sweet, Associate Professor
Ed.D., Harvard University 
Eric Love, Assistant Professor
M.A., Southwest Texas State University 
Roslyn Moore, Assistant Professor
M.F.A., University of California-Los Angeles 
Alicia Okuchi-Guy, Assistant Professor
M.F.A., University of California-Irvine 
Timothy Poertner, Assistant Professor
M.F.A., University of Texas-Austin

The Theatre and Dance program is a newly-reactivated program at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.  The curriculum is a component of the Department of Communication.  Work is currently underway on a new theatre curriculum 

The University of Missouri-St. Louis has presented student theatrical productions in each of the past five years.  Two productions are planned for 2003-2004.  The University Players, a recognized student organization, is open to any University of Missouri-St. Louis student. 

For further information concerning the theatre productions, curriculum, or other matters, contact the College of Fine Arts and Communication.

Undergraduate Studies

General Education Requirements

Majors must satisfy the University and College general education requirements.  The College’s foreign language requirement may be taken in any language.  Communication courses may not be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.

 Required Courses for All Majors 

Communication 1040, Introduction to Public Speaking
Communication 1135, Communication Theory
Communication 2980, (at least a three hour practicum course)

In addition to the required courses for all majors, students must take the following:

  1. Theatre 1210, Fundaments of Acting
    Theatre 1230, Production Aesthetics
    Theatre 1800, Introduction to the Theatre
  2. Nine additional hours in Theatre
  3. One of the following Mass Communication courses:
    1050, Introduction to Mass Media
    1070, Introduction to Cinema
    1110, Introduction to Radio and Television Broadcasting
  4. Plus 6-15 hours from any area or areas of the communication/theatre department.

 Prerequisites may be waived by consent of the department.

Course Descriptions 

1030 Interpersonal Communication 1 (3) [C]
Development of basic one-to-one communication skills.  Includes self-awareness, listening, nonverbal communication, feedback, roleplaying, and receiver awareness. 

1040 Introduction to Public Speaking (3) [C]
Theories and techniques of organization, evidence, argumentation, persuasion, and delivery in public speaking. 

1050 Introduction to Mass Media (3) [C, SS]
Introduction to oral, print, and electronic media of communication.  Emphasis on history, theory, and criticism of the mass media as cultural institutions. 

1070 Introduction to Cinema (3)
An introduction to the history, rhetoric, and aesthetics of film.  Film theory and criticism will be studied as well as major genres, authors, and artists. 

1135 Communication Theory (3)
Survey of elements and processes critical to human communication behavior.  Comparison of influential communication theories. 

1160 Fundamental of Oral interpretation (3)
Prerequisite:  Communication 1040 or consent of instructor.  An introduction to the analysis of literature and the principles of its oral presentation by the interpreter. 

1210(21) Fundamentals of Acting (3)
Oral and physical communication of a role through improvisations, exercises, and scene work.  Emphasis on modern representational method with some attention given to other styles. 

1230 Production Aesthetics (3)
An analysis of the visual components of dramatic presentation, including an introduction to theatrical styles and forms, technical design elements, and presentational techniques.  A broad survey of theatre production. 

1800(80) Introduction to the Theatre (3)
A study of theatre as an art form, emphasizing the audience’s appreciation of the art of the playwright, actor, director, and designer.  Study of major periods, genres, and plays from classical to modern times. 

2225 Stagecraft (4)
A survey of the theory and practice of stage scenery methods, Practical experiences in construction, rigging, and stage lighting and painting techniques, as well as supervised work in all other phases of theatrical production will be emphasized.  Two hours of lecture and four hours of laboratory 

2230 Small Group Communication (3)
Prerequisite: Communication 1040.  Development of communication skills needed in small group decision making.  Application of these skills to contemporary problems. 

2231 Communication in the Organization (3)
Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of instructor.  Course integrates communication theories applicable to the structure and function of organizations.  The effect of communication variables on department interface, member satisfaction and motivation, leadership and subordinate styles, and perception of  the organization by the external environment. 

2240 Stage Movement (3)
Training in movement techniques for the stage, including mime, stage combat, and dramatic dance forms. 

2260 Costuming for the Theatre (3)
This course covers the theory and practice of costume design and construction.  It includes an overview of the history of clothing and fashion and its effect on the actor playing period drama.  Lab required.

2280 Stage Lighting (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1230 or consent of instructor.  An introduction to the theory and practice of state lighting.  The course will include a variety of established theories of state lighting as well as practical training in lighting  instrumentation and control systems. 

2980 Practicum in Theatre (1-2)
Prerequisite:  Theatre 1210, Theatre 1230, or Theatre 1800.  Laboratory experience in campus theatre production from one of the following areas: acting, directing, stage management, lighting, sound design, scene construction, house management.  Repeatable, but no more than four credit hours may be earned in departmental practicum courses. 

3210 Ensemble Acting (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1210.  Laboratory – discussion course emphasizing role analysis, scene study, characterization, and ensemble acting. 

3214 News Writing (3)
(Same as English 3140) Prerequisite: English 1100 or equivalent.  An introduction to news writing and reporting.  Course covers basic components of news reporting principles, and news writing style and structure.  Daily writing assignments include coverage of speeches meetings and interviews, accidents, deaths, courts, sports, consumer affairs and government.  Emphasis on clarity, accuracy, and speed. 

3230 Aesthetics of Theatrical Styles (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1230.  Analysis of the development of dramatic and artistic styles as they affect the visual presentation of ideas in theatre. 

3240 Movement for Musical Theatre (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 2240 or consent of instructor.  Specialized training in movement and dance techniques for musical theatre. 

3250 Designing for the Theatre (3)
An introduction to the theories and practices of scenic and costume design for the theatre.  The course will survey the evolution of theatrical designs through different cultures, dramatic genres, and theatre architecture. 

3332 Intercultural Communication
Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of the instructor.
Study of culture as a variable in both interpersonal collective communicative situations.  Emphasis upon opportunities and problems arising from similarities or differences in communication patterns, processes, and codes among various cultural groups. 

3340 Male/Female Communication (3)
This course explores the influence of gender upon contemporary American communication behavior.  Topics include semantic and syntactic variations in male and female speech, gender role development as process and product of communication, analysis of communication patterns and barriers within gender groups.  Mass, public, interpersonal, and dyadic communication contexts are considered. 

3362 Storytelling (3)
Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of instructor.  This course gives an overview of the history of storytelling, types of tales, and appropriate uses for storytelling. The primary emphasis of the course is in developing storytelling skills through preparation, performances, and evaluation. 

3810 Theatre from the Ancient Greeks to the Restoration (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1800 or consent of instructor.  History of theatre and drama from Classical Greek to the Restoration period. 

3820 Theatre from the 18th Century to the 1980s (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1800 or consent of instructor.  History of theatre and drama from the eighteenth century to present. 

4210 Acting Styles (3)
Prerequisite:  Theatre 3210.  Studies in period acting styles, emphasizing cultural distinctions in manners, movement, and vocal practice.

4220 Directing for the Theatre (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1210 or consent of instructor.  A survey of the theories and practices of theatrical directing.  The course will explore the director’s role in the theatre from script analysis and production planning to the performance of laboratory scenes. 

4230 Theatre Management (3)
Prerequisite: Theatre 1230.  Comprehensive study of theatre management techniques, including season selection, budget control, box office, facility management, and promotional techniques for theatre. 

4980 Internship in Theatre (3)
Prerequisites:  Senior standing, with at least 12 hours of course work in theatre; an overall GPS of at least 3.0; consent of instructor; open to communication majors only; not open to students who have any Y or delayed grades outstanding.  Supervised practical work at a theatre off campus in one of the following areas: acting, directing design, stage management.  Repeatable, but no more than six hours total credit may be earned in internship courses.  Only three hours in internship courses may be counted toward the 36-hour minimum required for the degree. 


1023 Fundamentals of Dance
This course provides an introductory exploration of movement through various styles of dance, emphasizing  movement vocabulary, stretching, strengthening, body alignment, and creative expression.  Prior dance experience is not required.  Dance attire and shoes will be required. 

2198D Practicum in Theatre (audition required)
This course provides practical experience in dance, stage movement, stage combat, or choreography in conjunction with Theatre and Dance Department productions, or other approved independent study projects.  In addition to the TBA daytime lab hours, occasional weekend and/or evening laboratory time may be required.  This course is repeatable for credit.  Appropriate clothing and shoes will be required.  Week before classes begin August, 2003, you will receive exact information in the mail.