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Southern Oregon University

Master of Theatre Studies
in Production and Design


Program Courses:

Principles of Production Analysis

Principles of Production Analysis is related to script work of directors and designers. The course offers the foundation for direction and design for the theatre. It requires reading and analyzing plays with the intent to realize a theatrical production of the plays assigned. Several of the class periods will be devoted entirely to discussion on plays viewed at The Oregon Shakespeare Festival as example and inspiration. Course work includes dramatic structure, scenic breakdowns, beat analysis, statements of dramatic action and discussion of analogies and metaphors used in developing a unified concept for a production.

Design Elements

Design Elements is related primarily to the designers' work. The course offers you opportunities to explore how the varied elements of design integrate to realize a unified production. Curriculum includes research, building models, creating renderings, drafting light plots, recording sound sketches for assigned plays, and developing a rationale to support design choices. You will formalize design interpretations in scenic, costume, lighting and sound design and present your work in both theoretical and realized formats. The realized designs will include documentation of process, methods and materials.

Production Implementation

Production Implementation is related to the organization and physical implementation of production: the work of the production manager, stage manager, technical director, properties master, costume shop supervisor, master electrician, and sound engineer. The course will focus on developing the practical skills necessary to implement a production. You will learn how to translate design ideas into tangible form and how to communicate those ideas throughout production areas. Curriculum will include current theatre technology, research of new technologies, and scheduling and communication models for production implementation. Integral aspects include how to work within a defined set of financial, physical and material resources and how to minimize negative impacts and maximize the potential of a fully integrated production.

Practicum: Applied Technology

Practicum: Applied Technology is related to learning theatre crafts. The course develops the information base necessary for full technical support of a design concept. You will learn new theatre technologies and improve your skills in costume construction, wigs and make-up; set and properties construction, painting and rigging; lighting hook-ups, plots and rigging; and sound recording, editing, mixing and live amplification. Curriculum includes documentation in all areas of production, including itemized budgets, costume plots and renderings, scenic design and construction drawings, paint renderings and elevations, scenic inventory and timeline, prop lists, light plots and hookup sheets, wig and make-up renderings, and sound plots. Safety and maintenance of equipment and facilities will be addressed.

Thesis Project:

Thesis project -curriculum culmination consisting of a portfolio reflecting best work samples, a detailed self evaluation paper, and an oral defense of these documents.

Program Scope

These courses form four integrated sequences that focus on representational, presentational and musical theatre as well as building on previously learned production skills. Assignments during the school year and individual blocks of time within the summer session may fulfill requirements for more than one course. Course work begins upon acceptance to the program with some assignments prior to your first summer residency and is completed with a thesis project consisting of a portfolio reflecting best work samples, a detailed self evaluation paper, and an oral defense of these documents.