Jul 21, 2024  
2023 - 2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023 - 2024 Undergraduate Catalog

Theatre, Speech, and Dance

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View the Theatre, Speech, and Dance Faculty. 


When students decide to become theatre majors, they accept the requirements demanded by their art—self-discipline, curiosity, cooperation, and a desire for excellence. Theatre inherently embraces the liberal arts, fusing historical and theoretical studies with creative work. We expect theatre majors to become knowledgeable about all facets of theatrical practice including direction, design, technical production, and performance.

Our undergraduates excel because the department provides major opportunities for students to fulfill high level production assignments and in-depth scholarly research while investigating a variety of theatrical genres. In addition to four main stage productions each year, the department sponsors Senior Directorials (full-length plays directed by advanced students), Director’s Workshop (one-act plays directed by intermediate students), and Premiere Theatre (plays written, directed, and acted by students). A distinctive feature of the department is our faculty’s deep collaboration with global, ethnic, and interdisciplinary based programs of study such as Africana Studies, American Studies, Asian Studies, Film Studies, Literary & Cultural Studies, and Women’s Studies.

The department prepares students to continue working in theatre, to teach, to pursue graduate studies, or to apply lessons learned in other occupations. The immersion in both scholarship and performance at William and Mary provides an excellent basis for any pursuit which demands leadership ability, collaborative skill, practical expertise, and creative intelligence.


The Dance Program emphasizes the creative process within a liberal arts setting by providing an environment to stimulate inventive thinking through the language of dance. Students are provided with major opportunities to produce original choreographic work through two main stage concerts and one studio concert each year. Dance offerings include cross-listings in Africana Studies, American Studies, Asian Studies, and Film Studies. Many students study dance for the first time at William and Mary, while others build on previous training. Students pursue studies in dance to develop artistry, performance skills, leadership ability, and critical thinking skills which are essential in many professions and provide a foundation for graduate work and careers in dance.

A Placement Evaluation to determine technique level is offered during orientation week in the fall. Students will be assigned to the technique level for which they are qualified on the basis of previous background and demonstrated technical ability. Those students who place at the 300-level or above will receive exemption for GER 6 (No credit).

Programs and Course Descriptions



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