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Music Theatre Major, B.F.A.

B.F.A. degree

Major Map

Students wishing to develop the skills necessary to become a professional performer in theatrical genres that combine acting with music and dance need a program that provides training and experience in those areas.

Music Theatre at CMU. Students interested in the BFA-Music Theatre program should contact the Office of the Dean, College of Arts and the Media, to discuss dates and criteria for the auditions.

Admission Requirements, Retention & Termination Standards

Admission. Admission to the program is by audition only. The auditions occur early in the spring semester each year. Auditions are attended by faculty from music, theatre, and dance. Criteria and information about the audition process may be found at https://www.cmich.edu/colleges/CCFA/CCFAMusicalTheatre/, or by contacting the Office of the Dean, College of Communication and Fine Arts, or by writing to the Chair of the Music Theatre Council, 129 Moore Hall, Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, MI, 48859.

Retention. Each year, Music Theatre majors demonstrate their progress as singers/actors in performance examinations known as juries. Juries are held during the final examination time at the end of the spring semester. In a jury, the Music Theatre major performs for faculty and receives written comments. Students are allowed two attempts to satisfactorily complete each jury level. Only one attempt may be made each semester. Failure to pass to a higher level of study will result in dismissal from the Music Theatre program.

Additional criteria for continuing in the program include meeting the current university standard for grade point average (GPA). A student who has been awarded a Music Theatre Scholarship has additional criteria to fulfill. These criteria are listed on the Music Theatre Scholarship material each student receives at the end of each semester. Scholarship students are required to request renewal of the scholarship at the end of each semester.

Information for Transfer Students. The principal goal of the Music Theatre program is to provide comprehensive training in the complex area of music theatre that integrates various performance skills (music, theatre, dance) and production experiences into a high quality pre-professional major. All students wishing to become a BFA-Music Theatre major must audition. Information about audition dates and requirements may be found at https://www.cmich.edu/colleges/CCFA/CCFAMusicalTheatre/. Answers to many other questions may be found there as well.

Transfer students often have questions about what courses they should take to prepare for the Music Theatre program. Since each student’s background is different, it is difficult to give answers that will apply to all situations. Generally, training in the following areas is recommended but not required to enter the CMU Music Theatre program:

  1. Studies in music, particularly formal voice lessons
  2. Studies in acting, particularly basic acting classes
  3. Studies in dance, particularly basic dance technique classes

Program Requirements

Required Courses I (48 hours)

DAN 133Modern I

2(1-2)

DAN 136Ballet I

2(1-2)

DAN 137Tap I

2(1-2)

DAN 138Jazz I

2(1-2)

DAN 230Movement-Rhythmic Form and Structure

3(3-0)

MUS 101Fundamentals of Music Theory

4(3-2)

MUS 102Theory and Analysis of Popular Music

4(3-2)

MUS 103Sight Singing and Ear Training I

1(0-2)

MUS 104Sight Singing and Ear Training II

1(0-2)

MUS 147Piano Class I

1(0-2)

MUS 148Piano Class II

1(0-2)

TAI 175WIThe Art of Theatre: From 'Hamlet' to 'Hamilton'

3(3-0)

TAI 182Acting I

3(3-0)

TAI 278Stage Makeup

3(2-2)

TAI 282Acting II

3(3-0)

TAI 352Music Theatre Scene Study

3(1-2)

TAI 380Musical Theatre History

3(3-0)

TAI 452Music Theatre Performance

3(2-2)

TAI 460BFA Capstone Project

3(0-6)

TAI 481Directing

3(3-0)

Note: Incoming students will be given a Theory Placement Exam. If recommended based on exam results, students should take MUS 206 (3 hours) prior to taking MUS 101.

Students demonstrating sufficient proficiency as determined by appropriate DAN faculty member(s) may substitute a higher level skills course for DAN 136, DAN 137, and DAN 138. Students demonstrating sufficient proficiency as determined by appropriate MUS faculty member(s) may substitute a higher level skills course for MUS 147 and MUS 148.

Required Courses II (4 hours)

Participation in one of the following choral ensembles (may be repeated):

MUS 182Women's Chorus

1-8(Spec)

MUS 183Concert Choir

1-8(Spec)

MUS 282Chamber Singers

1-8(Spec)

Required Courses III (8 hours)

Each course to be taken for two semesters, 1 hour each semester, for a total of 8 hours:

MUS 150Voice

1-12(Spec)

MUS 250Voice

1-12(Spec)

MUS 284Techniques for the Singing Actor

1-6(Spec)

MUS 350Voice

1-16(Spec)

Required Courses IV (2 hours)

Select two TAI studio courses in one of the following areas of technical theatre for a faculty-supervised theatre production or for a faculty-supervised dance concert:

TAI 309Studio: Stage Management

1-4(Spec)

TAI 310Studio: Sound

1-4(Spec)

TAI 311Studio: Properties

1-4(Spec)

TAI 312Studio: Scenery Construction and Rigging

1-4(Spec)

TAI 313Studio: Scenery Design

1-4(Spec)

TAI 314Studio: Lighting

1-4(Spec)

TAI 315Studio: Lighting Design

1-4(Spec)

TAI 316Studio: Technical Direction

1-4(Spec)

TAI 317Studio: Costuming

1-4(Spec)

TAI 318Studio: Wardrobe Management

1-4(Spec)

TAI 319Studio: Makeup

1-4(Spec)

Electives (20 hours)

Select from DAN, MUS, TAI and/or cognate classes in consultation with the advisor. Students may not take more than nine (9) hours of electives in any one area (DAN, MUS, TAI).

Total: 82 semester hours