Ball State’s musical theatre option in our bachelor of fine arts (BFA) in theatre is designed to give you outstanding, pre-professional training within a liberal arts education. Our goal is to prepare versatile and collaborative performing artists who will be competitive in the industry upon graduation. During your time here you will gain the knowledge and skills to handle a variety of styles, genres, and time periods within the musical theatre canon.
The musical theatre option is a rigorous and extensive interdisciplinary program that offers comprehensive, conservatory-style training. You will receive individual vocal instruction, weekly studio master classes, courses in musicianship (music theory, sight singing, piano, and ensemble singing), as well as comprehensive acting and dance training.
- Our undergraduate-only program allows you numerous opportunities to perform and learn experientially.
- You will be closely monitored and evaluated each semester through rigorous classroom work and performance juries.
- We are dedicated to introducing you to new works.
- The curriculum allows you to participate in exciting immersive learning and summer opportunities.
- You will have numerous on-campus workshops with professional casting directors and other industry professionals throughout your four years of training, and have the opportunity to audition for senior showcases in New York and Chicago, and an LA Experience in Los Angeles.
- We are an active, award-winning participant in the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival (KCACTF).
- The BFA in musical theatre requires 87 credits, along with the additional 33 credits of core courses and two general electives that are part of the university’s core curriculum.
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Senior capstone projects are the culmination of four years of education in the Department of Theatre and Dance. As a musical theatre option student, the typical capstone would be a live group cabaret performance at two venues: Joe's Pub in New York City and The Cabaret in Indianapolis. Spring 2021 held new challenges for the BFA musical theatre option students. Just as the students had to adapt to theatre training during a global pandemic, so too did the traditional capstone project. Instead of the group cabaret performed live in Indianapolis in January and in New York in March, the cabaret will be livestreamed from The Cabaret stage on May 1.
View the Cabaret
- You will receive rigorous and diverse training in singing/musicianship, dancing, and acting from our musical theatre faculty.
- Our low student-to-faculty ratio will allow for your personal development as an individual artist.
- You will receive hands-on advising and mentoring from a faculty of working artists with extensive experience in the professional world.
- Every year, we host internationally renowned distinguished guest artists.
Ball State gives students the freedom and space to not only think creatively, but they can use the resources given to them and positively affect the world they live in.
Our dedicated, caring faculty will immediately welcome you into our community and guide you throughout your entire experience at Ball State. Our acting faculty have worked professionally in New York, Chicago, and regional theatre.
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Performance and Work Opportunities
You will always have opportunities to work—both in and out of the classroom—to get you ready for the real world of professional theatre.
- With as many as 20 performances each year in our mainstage, studio, and workshop spaces, you will have numerous opportunities to perform in a wide variety of musicals, dance pieces, and plays.
- You will be eligible to audition for productions the second semester of freshman year.
- Professors will assist you in finding internships, professional work, and summer training opportunities all over the globe. Recent placements include Actors Theatre of Louisville, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Drury Lane Theatre, Open Jar Institute, and Williamstown Theatre Festival, among many others.
Ball State musical theatre alumni are ready to enter the industry as soon as they graduate, and they are eager to support future graduates of the program.
- Ball State musical theatre alumni are working all over the country—on Broadway and Off-Broadway, in Chicago, on national tours, in regional theatre, and in film and television.
- Ball State has active and supportive alumni networks in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and other major cities.
Recent acting alumni credits include Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812 on Broadway, This is Our Youth at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, The Glory of the World at Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Christians at Mark Taper Forum, and television appearances on The Good Wife, Elementary, and Madam Secretary.
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In addition to faculty who are working professionals, we bring in distinguished guest artists on a regular basis to work with you—in classes, workshops, and the production season. These seasoned practitioners will enrich your educational experience immeasurably, while also allowing for professional networking opportunities.
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Paying for Your Education
On top of the many forms of financial aid Ball State offers, the Department of Theatre and Dance offers a wide variety of merit and need-based scholarships to our own students at all levels and in all areas. We provide tens of thousands of dollars in support to make the college experience more affordable.
Apply to the Program
Are you interested in the musical theatre option of our BFA in theatre? You must audition for admission into the program. We hold on-campus auditions, and we participate in the National Unified Auditions in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles.
You must apply for admission to the university prior to scheduling your audition. Audition requests are made by filling out the supplemental theatre application that is part of the online application to the university.