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Southern Oregon University

Master of Theatre Studies in Production and Design


The Theatre Teacher Training program for high school and community college teachers is a rigorous experience that requires three summers with two intensive weeks in residence in July and considerable individual effort before and after each summer. The program requires practical implementation and documentation of applied design and production projects executed in your own school. Each year focuses on a different type of theatre: presentational, representational, or musical theatre. The program leads to a Master of Theatre Studies in Production and Design.

What our students say:
  • "There are things that I will take back to use in my classroom from the very first week and ideas that I will be able to use in my productions immediately."
  • "The information learned will be invaluable to me and my program. I have more tools to create richer productions at my school."
  • "The coursework was challenging and it has been exciting to learn many new skills."
Course Work includes:
  • Script analysis of plays of varied styles and time periods with comprehensive discussion of the methodologies of translating dramatic themes into effective direction, design and a unified production
  • Skills for communicating design ideas--research, building models, creating renderings, drafting light plots, and recording sound sketches
  • Safe and cost-effective techniques for realizing design concepts in production--costume, scenic, and properties construction, and lighting and sound engineering
  • Discussion with professionals and colleagues of Oregon Shakespeare Festival plays in production, examining conceptual development of direction and design ideas, and the realization of those concepts into actual productions
  • Stage management, production management, and technical direction techniques
  • New technologies--how they enhance theatre crafts and integrate with theatrical processes
  • Application of new concepts and skills to productions and curriculum development in your own school (see assignments and projects)
  • Thesis project -curriculum culmination consisting of a portfolio reflecting best work samples, a detailed self evaluation paper, and an oral defense of these documents.
  • The SOU Master’s program candidates must complete 9 credits of elective coursework to fulfill their degree requirements.

2014 Elective Course Options:

Winter 2014 Online Course

Workshop/Dramatic Literature/Modernism -January 6 - March 21, 2014

Summer 2014 On-Site Elective Courses

July 7-11, 2014
Staging the Musical:  Work with a professional theatre director to develop and/or refine your skills for directing a musical.  Study the director’s role, preproduction planning and the rehearsal process:

July 28 - August 1, 2013

Costume Crafts: Patternmaking Develop the skills and confidence to generate useful patterns from which to make costume pieces for your productions.

Microphone Intensive:  Take a deeper look at microphones and how best to use them: explore mic technique for band/orchestra reinforcement, as well as vocals. Examine the differences between common microphone types and learn the best way to use a particular mic. Master recording set up and techniques, and learn how to create and record your very own sound effect library.

Additional Activities:

  • Oregon Shakespeare Festival 2014 productions of Cocoanuts, Family Album or The Great Society
  • Student presentations on research, curriculum, and applied design and production projects

Questions? Check out our FAQ page.

More information on graduate studies requirements

Master of Theatre Studies dates for 2015

July 10-25, 2015:  main graduate 2-week program and prologue weekend
July 6-10, 2014 AND/OR July 27-31, 2014:  optional weeks of elective courses