Theatre Technology Curriculum

This is a 3-year, 6 semester, 60 hour course of study consisting of four components: the design/technology studio, production laboratory, critical thinking/writing, and skill-building.

Integrated Media for Live Performance The Integrated Media degree track is designed to prepare students for the changing face of theatre technology. It will focus on media design and new technology applications. It is also a track that emphasizes creative endeavors outside of traditional theatre, including museums, theme parks, retail spaces, interactive displays, filmmaking, and multi-media. This course of study centers around the following core group courses:

  • 4 semester-long Studio courses in Integrated Media and Scenery Technology. Topics covered in Integrated Media may include: Video Production for Live Performance; Projection Design; and Audio Design. Scenery Technology may include: Technical Problem Solving; Automation and Show Control Systems; Process Management and Media-based Communication; Structures and Rigging.
  • 2 semesters of Design Studio – The first year is spent in design studio with all new designers, directors and technicians. This includes an extensive drawing lab.
  • 6 semesters of Production Laboratory – creating shows.
  • 6 skill-building courses in the area of choice. The student may select from choices in costumes, scenery, AutoCAD, Photoshop, production management, producing, media production, editing, drawing, painting, robotic lighting, audio design, and others.
  • 2 semesters of theater history, criticism, theory, or performance as public practice.
  • 1 semester of Research Methods
  • 1 semester Elective
  • Portfolio
  • Thesis (see “Thesis” below).

Students may also select courses from the other departments of the University, such as Computer Science, Engineering, Electronic Music or RTF (Radio, Television and Film). Should students wish to carry a heavier load, they may take more than six electives, with the consent of the head of the theatrical technology program.

Thesis

The graduate INTEGRATED MEDIA thesis should be the capstone of a candidate's graduate work at the University of Texas at Austin. It is an opportunity for the M.F.A. candidate to demonstrate her/his aesthetic, artistic, intellectual, and technical acumen to the highest level of achievement based on a professional model. To this end, the thesis shall be reviewed according to: 1) the standards of the business and 2) the standards of university research methods (a well written, well researched and documented thesis project). The thesis will consist of three parts: Part I, will exhibit the candidate's skills and expertise in Production or Management; Part II, will consist of a major generative original work; Part III, will be a presentation of the candidate's portfolio.

The thesis is subject to the requirements of the University and Graduate School. This means that a supervisor, usually the student's primary advisor, and an additional reader will examine the thesis in detail. This will be followed with an oral defense of the work.

Requirements

In addition to the normal requirements of the University of Texas Graduate School, we also require the following: Students must complete a course in the fundamentals of AutoCAD before the second semester begins. This requirement may be satisfied on-campus if the student is not fluent in AutoCAD before arriving.

Students must own a laptop computer with a required suite of software (all of which can be purchased inexpensively through the University) and a removable USB drive of at least 100 GB.

Conferences, Internships, Opportunities

The program is primarily completed on campus, although we do encourage travel and participation for professional and cultural education. The Prague Quadrennial, USITT, LDI, IAAPA, Design Assisting, and study abroad have often been part of the student experience during graduate school at UT. Many students have participated in internship programs at major theatres, professional New York costume shops, major opera companies, design studios and television studios. In some cases, partial financial support is available from the University for these opportunities.


Costume Technology

This course of study centers around the following core courses:

  • 4 semesters of Studio courses in Draping and Tailoring: Topics covered may include: Pattern Development; Period Corsets and Undergarments; Proportional Drafting Systems; Contemporary and Historic Draping Methods; Classic Men's Tailoring Techniques; Costume Construction for Film and Television; Team Management; Advanced Fitting techniques
  • 2 semesters of Costume Design/Design Studio
  • 5 semesters of Production Laboratory
  • 2 semesters of costume history, theater history, criticism, theory, or performance as public practice.
  • 6 semester of skill-building courses chosen from the following topics: costume shop management, production management, millinery, fabric dyeing and painting, mask-making, makeup, and wig making.
  • 1 semester of Research Methods
  • 1 semester Elective• Portfolio• Thesis (see “Thesis” below)

All students are required to attend daily drawing lab as part of their studio coursework. Should students wish to carry a heavier load, they may take more than the eight electives, with the consent of the head of the theatrical technology program.

Thesis

The graduate COSTUME TECHNOLGY thesis should be the capstone of a candidate's graduate work at the University of Texas at Austin. It is an opportunity for the M.F.A. candidate to demonstrate her/his aesthetic, artistic, intellectual, and technical acumen to the highest level of achievement based on a professional model. To this end, the thesis shall be reviewed according to: the standards of the business (professional level of costume making and costume shop etiquette); and the standards of university research methods (well written and well researched thesis paper). The thesis will consist of three parts: Part I, will exhibit the candidate's skills and expertise in Costume Shop Management or Costume Construction and Team Management; Part II, will consist of a major generative original work; Part III, will be a presentation of the candidate's portfolio.

The thesis is subject to the requirements of the University and Graduate School. This means that a supervisor, usually the student's primary advisor, and an additional reader will examine the thesis in detail which will then culminate in an oral defense of the work.

Conferences

The program is primarily completed on campus, although we do encourage attendance at one of the two major theatrical trade shows—USITT or LDI. In some cases, partial support is available from the University.

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