Created in the 1930’s by English Professor and Designer Ralph Pendleton, Wesleyan’s Theater Department explores on theater and performance as creative and critical processes. Merging theory and practice, we believe that theater is an essential component of a liberal arts education and we are committed to graduating theater makers. With an attention to creative theater making in the twenty-first century, our courses and productions reflect the interdisciplinary interests of our faculty and majors. We approach theater from an intersectional perspective in which both rigorous scholarship and applied creative practice are emphasized by continuous and collaborative exchange. Students do not focus in one area within theatrical production, but instead become theater makers who are skilled across a range of interrelated theater practices including: devising, production design, directing, theater history, critical and performative writing, acting, playwriting, improvisation, and technical theater. Productions range from adaptations of classical texts to movement or visually-based performance installations.

Theater Department productions are staged in The Center for the Arts Theater, the Patricelli '92 Theater, and across campus in site-specific locations. In addition to full time theater faculty, we often host visiting artists for guest lectures, unique courses, and workshops. Recent artists have included Pulitzer Prize winner Quiara Alegría Hudes, and Doris Duke Artist Becca Blackwell, and Creative Capital award winner and Wesleyan Theater alum Kaneza Schaal, among others.

Wesleyan's Theater Department aims at preparing the next generation of artists and scholars. Our alumni are notably active in the professional métier and they appear on international and and national stages, on and off Broadway, and many are the recipients of prestigious awards: "Bessie" Award designers Chloe Brown and Roderick Murray, Emmy Award recipients Dana Delany and Bradley Whitford, Tony Award winners Frank Wood and Lin-Manuel Miranda, are just a few examples. Several alumni have joined renowned theater companies, while others are founding members of cutting-edge collaborative ensembles, acclaimed solo performers, and community activists. Theater alumni hold graduate degrees in acting, arts management, design, directing, theater history, and performance studies from the nation's most reputable programs.

Welcome New Wesleyan Theater Students:
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