Each year, the Theatre program stages two mainstage performances, one in the Fall and one in the Spring. Productions are chosen at least one year in advance by the Theatre faculty, and are based on a variety of factors including current social issues, pedagogical needs of the Theatre program students, current student populations, as well as special skill sets of guest directors (if a guest director will be working within the program during the season).
Past productions have included:
- Metamorphoses by Mary Zimmerman
- Art by Yasmina Reza (performed in English translation and the original French)
- A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
- Manual Not Included (a devised theatre piece created by the cast and director)
- The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov
- Clybourne Park by Bruce Norris
- Enchanted April by Matthew Barber
- reasons to be pretty by Neil LaBute.
Mainstage productions are directed and designed by faculty or professional guest artists, but are performed, built, crewed and stage managed by you. This gives you valuable practical experience that will prepare you for your creative life after graduating from UL Lafayette.
Additional Production Opportunities
Additional performance and production opportunities are also available to you during the school year.
Graduating seniors are expected to collaborate as a class to develop a capstone experience that involves all of them to create a finished performance. These projects often have additional opportunities for actors, designers, stage managers and crew members for other students in the program.
You will also have the opportunity to submit proposals for Second Stage, a student-driven performance project that can take a variety of forms, depending on student interest.
Theatre students with a strong interest and background in musical theatre can audition to participate in the Music program’s Opera Theatre productions, too.
For less formal performance opportunities, you can audition to be a part of final scenes for the Directing classes, or have your own studio class work be included in the Theatre Showcase at the end of each semester.
Getting Involved in Production
In a collaborative art like the theatre, you’ll definitely find yourself involved in some aspect of production each semester—it’s not a possibility, it’s a sure thing. Whether you’re on stage or working behind the scenes to make the magic happen, working directly on a production is a key component of your education at UL Lafayette.
Performing in Production
If you’re a Performing Arts major in the Theatre concentration, you are required to audition for all main stage Theatre productions each semester. If you’re a major and are cast in a piece, you are required to accept the role(s) offered to you.
Of course, auditions are open to everyone—Theatre minors, UL students not currently participating in Theatre courses, and community members.
Most rehearsals take place in the evenings and on weekends, so it is important that you keep those times as free as possible during the semester. Regardless of your status as a major, minor, or interested student, all cast members are expected to abide by professional standards of conduct. This means that attendance at rehearsal is required, with all members of a cast arriving on time, in appropriate dress, and ready to work.
Design & Technology in Production
Of course, acting in a production is just one part of the whole show. You’ll also be learning about the design and technology elements of a performance, too. There are plenty of opportunities to hone those skills at UL Lafayette.
All productions are stage-managed, crewed, and built by Theatre students. As you progress in your technical training, you will have the chance to take on increased responsibilities in those fields. You may find yourself working as an assistant designer for an element of the production, or even leading the way with your own designs under the guidance of a faculty mentor.
Past students have served as assistant lighting designers, assistant costume designers, make-up designers, wig masters, sound designers, and in other key technology roles. All students filling roles at any level of production are expected to abide by professional standards of conduct. This means that attendance at rehearsals and work calls is required, with all members of the crew and technology team arriving on time, in appropriate dress, and ready to work.