Apr 23, 2024  
Ohio University Graduate Catalog 2015-2017 
Ohio University Graduate Catalog 2015-2017 [Archived Catalog]

Acting - MFA

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Degree Title: Master of Fine Arts

Program Name and Number: Acting - MF5132

Department/Unit: Dance, Film, and Theater

Delivery Mode: Athens Campus

Program Mission: The Ohio University MFA Theater Degrees prepare students to:

  • Demonstrate heightened skills in professional presentation, collaboration and communication.
  • Demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of research practices, dramatic literature, theory and history.
  • Apply heightened skills and demonstrate a comprehension of theories and methodologies as they relate to professional practice in specific disciplines.
  • The Professional Actor Training Program (PATP) prepares advanced students for careers as professional actors, with the expectation that students will take responsibility for the depth and development of their own artistic practices. The training is dedicated to producing well-rounded, skillful, and creative actor/artists with a clear, specific and personal approach to the craft of acting.

Program Learning Objectives:  To prepare students to be professional actors who:

  • Are clear and specific in their approach to the act of performance.
  • Have the ability to apply these methods successfully and creatively regardless of period, content, style, venue or medium.
  • Are imaginative, truthful, spontaneous, flexible, self-motivated and able to work and adapt in a rapidly changing profession.
  • Are generous members of any ensemble, with strong collaborative skills.
  • Bring skill and ease to the development of new work.

Program Overview: The performance area faculty delivers acting, movement, and voice and speech classes in a sequential progression. This progression is built on the belief that any artist or craftsperson must begin with a foundation that is consistent, clear, coherent and cohesive. This foundation work ensures that every student has a strong knowledge of self, a developing system of values and ideals regarding process, practice and performance, and an awareness of their weaknesses and strengths.

First Year:  Foundation: The first year acting studio puts rigorous emphasis on the authentic use of self, the reality of doing, the awakening of the emotional life, and the collaborative process. Movement work correspondingly focuses on foundation, and develops strength, alignment, body/mind connection and physical expressivity. The first year of voice and speech is an in depth exploration of Fitzmaurice voice work, and Knight-Thompson speech work.

Second Year: Application: Training focuses on creating complex characters through the application of the foundation work to scenes, exercises and performance.  Shakespeare is introduced into the progression. The movement studio explores the psychophysical connection and the embodiment of text.  In stage combat, students take Skills Proficiency Tests with a Certified Teacher in the Society of American Fight Directors.  

Third Year: Classics, Special Studies and Thesis:  The third year deepens and broadens with specialized areas of acting, movement and voice. Scene work from the classical repertoire, advanced Michael Chekhov Technique, and acting for the camera constitute the acting component. Students work with a wide range of industry professionals and hone their audition technique and business acumen in classroom and professional settings.  The movement work concludes with an ensemble-devised work. Specialized areas of speech are introduced, including (but not limited to) heightened language and texts, dialects and voice over techniques.  

Link to Program: http://www.ohio.edu/finearts/theater/academics/graduate-programs/mfa-perfromance.cfm

Graduation Requirements:

  • Minimum semester hours
    • The PATP requires a minimum of 90 semester credit hours (including 9 required credits of internship), however, a full load for funding purposes is 108 credits.
    • At least 50% of coursework must be in graduate only classes.
  • Thesis requirement
    • The third year performance work in the Theater Division season comprises the thesis requirement.
    • There is an oral thesis examination covering research, process, rehearsal and performance of the roles played.
  • There is no qualifying exam or comprehensive exam.
  • The degree is designed to be completed in three academic years.

Admission Requirements:

  • Admission to the PATP is by interview and audition, conducted at the University/Resident Theater Association (U/RTA) National Unified Auditions in New York and Chicago, as well as on the OU campus in Athens. The U/RTA auditions are typically held in late January and early February, and on campus auditions begin as early as November of the previous year and often extend into April. We are accepting a class for admission in the fall of 2015. The next class will not be admitted until the fall of 2018.
  • Videotaped auditions and Skype interviews will be considered for international students. 
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Head shot and acting resume
  • Statement of purpose
  • Undergraduate transcripts

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