Theatre - Design/Production
Welcome to the Design/Production sequence at Illinois State University's School of Theatre and Dance! This is where your talent and skills turn into magic on stage. You will create exciting theatrical environments filled with costumes, scenery, lights and sound. We in the Design/Production sequence make it happen in our shops, in the rehearsal hall, and in the classroom. You will have hands-on opportunities to practice your chosen craft and experiment with others you never dreamed of mastering. Join in the fun at the School of Theatre and Dance, where we work boldly.
Point of Pride
Fine arts students are not only prepared to be the best in their artistic discipline, but also have extensive opportunities to learn how to apply that knowledge in a career setting, through entrepreneurship classes, specialized business-of-the-arts programs such as arts management, music business, and Design Streak, plus a national network of alumni connections in their field.
Why study Theatre - Design/Production?
Theatre is performed everywhere – on Broadway in New York City, in shows that travel around the country, in professional regional theaters in large cities, in community theaters in small towns, in school or even in the streets. People who have trained in theatre may also have the opportunity to work in movies and on television. There are additional professional jobs beyond being an actor; usually a theatre or movie production consists of a few actors and many backstage production personnel. A theatre major provides the background for all such jobs.
Come see campus and meet with campus representatives either in person or virtually. Optional chances to meet with academic department, honors, and financial aid.
Applying to Illinois State
Illinois State's preferred filing period for freshman students for the fall semester is September 1-November 15. Applying early is encouraged to receive a decision by the end of the year, and for best consideration for your academic program and for scholarships.
The School of Theatre and Dance has pivoted to virtual auditions. We hope this gives you a convenient way to audition and interview for potential scholarships.
2020-21 Audition Dates
November 7: Theatre and Dance
January 16: Theatre only
February 13: Theatre and Dance
February 20: Theatre only
Audition and Enrollment Process
- Apply to Illinois State University
- Choose an audition/interview date
- Upload any required materials to your application
- Receive a confirmation email from School of Theatre and Dance
- Attend audition/interview
- Receive a decision within two weeks
- Submit your enrollment deposit and become a Redbird
Scholarship notification will take place the first week of March.
If you would like to audit a class via Zoom, meet with faculty, or if you have a question about the enrollment process, email Cristen Monson.
Students must apply to Illinois State University prior to submitting a portfolio for review through your portal. A portfolio review is required for acceptance into the Design/Production major within the School of Theatre and Dance.
The School of Theatre and Dance applies the same academic standards as those required for admission to Illinois State University. There is no separate SAT/ACT or GPA requirement for admission to the School of Theatre and Dance.
Students who seek entrance into the Design/Production sequence must present a portfolio of their work for review by members of the School of Theatre and Dance faculty. Portfolio materials vary greatly depending upon the applicant’s experience and intended area of interest. Students are encouraged to assemble evidence of their work on prior productions or related projects. Items that may be included are sketch books, paintings, evidence of organization and management, photographs, production programs, drafting, prompt books, and more. Please consider that the faculty is assessing your potential for success in the field as well as your passion for the art. We invite you to share your experience thus far in the admission interview using your portfolio as a guide in that journey. Your interview will also count as your interview for scholarship consideration.
Quality is more important than quantity. Be prepared to discuss one or two items from your portfolio with the Design/Production faculty for five minutes at your interview. The remainder of the interview will be reserved for discussion and questions.
Requirements for Design and Production Program Consideration
After submitting your application, you will be asked to upload the following materials:
- Recent production resume
- Recent photo or headshot
You will also be required to interview with faculty to discuss your portfolio and experience.
Deadlines and Review Dates
Students are accepted into the Design/Production major within the School of Theatre and Dance on a rolling basis, contingent on admission by Illinois State University. Normally students are notified within two weeks whether or not they have passed their portfolio review via email.
School of Theatre and Dance scholarship awards are announced after March 1.
On audition day, you will attend a synchronous interview with Design and Production faculty.
There will be a brief meeting of all those auditioning/interviewing where faculty and administration will introduce themselves and answer questions. While you wait for your audition/interview time, you will be sent to a waiting room where current students will talk about the program and answer questions. Individual interviews take place in the order application is received.
Preparing Your Portfolio Review
When you come for your portfolio review and interview, please bring:
- a resume detailing your theatre production experience
- a recent photo of yourself
a "portfolio" of your work, including
- production photos
- organizational forms
- any other audio/visual materials that illustrate your skills.
Quality is more important than quantity. Be prepared to discuss your portfolio with the Design/Production faculty at your interview.