Our theatre program is designed in the Liberal Arts model of learning, because we believe a well-rounded person with strong skills in critical thinking, and who can view things from more than one viewpoint, is a better artist and citizen of our world. We aren't just training actors and designers, but educating contributors to our world.
A philosophy that marries learning with doing, for the best effect in both. Our theatre program is a strong mix of academic coursework and skills training, married to a dynamic schedule of productions that marry knowledge to real experience. Our program has been designed to teach theatre students: analytical thinking, strong decision-making skills and means of taking effective action.
The BA degree has a structure that allows for flexibility in scheduling and allows individual course elective choices by students. This deliberately enables double majors and transfer students, while still retaining the academic rigor of the program.
All colleges say this but at Carroll College it is highly apparent. We have a small theatre program compared to large universities. We are proud of this fact, and believe it has some advantages for students. Listed below are points to consider. While Theatre enrollments at Carroll can vary from year to year. Your class may have 5 or 20 students. Students don’t get lost in classes of that size. The faculty, and your fellow students know you, and work with you, as a close-knit team. Now think about being in a class with 100 or 125 majors, quite a different environment.
There are no graduate students or professional training program students to get preference for roles and assignments. Here verybody is on the same footing. A freshman can play a lead role and a junior can design a main-stage show. The opportunity to earn an important work assignment is here at Carroll, waiting for you.
"At Carroll, I’ve designed lighting for three main-stage productions and one children’s show. In larger programs, undergrads are lucky to have even one design implemented on stage. I’ve also worked as a stage manager, carpenter, painter, and costumer. Additionally I’m a member of the Improv Troupe, and have acting credits in 11 productions. Plus, I will be directing a show this fall. Carroll Theatre has afforded me the opportunity to grow in a variety of disciplines. " - David M. Gerke BA Theatre, Dec. 2007; Graduate school at University of Hawaii
There are also opportunities for you off-campus, in the vibrant Helena Theatre community. Carroll students are welcomed at Grandstreet Theatre, The Myrna Loy Center, The Helena Theatre Company, and the Helena Civic Center. The college also partners with some of these companies for joint productions and other efforts.
Every year we produce four to five productions, with something for every audience and performer. We perform musicals, dramas, comedies, classics and contemporary works.We offer a theatre for children series and have one act festivals. We feature student work in our showcase series. Follow the the link for the Story of Theatre at Carroll College or the Theatre Scrapbook and check out the page for our current season. We may not have everything but we don't miss much!
Some of our graduates have gone on to further studies at top graduate programs around the country. And many of our other graduates are doing their work professionally. Other students have used their theatrical skills in other fields, such as law, education, electronics, and business, to name a few.
At Carroll College being involved in the Theatre is a choice available to everyone. We love Theatre and we understand that many students in other disciplines love it too. We welcome students who are pursuing other educational goals and just want to participate in our shows! At Carroll College the theatre is available to everybody.
But the key outcome is that our graduates hold the moral and ethical values, the vision, and the personal power, to make the world a better place. Wherever they work and whatever they do.
The best answer is another question: What do you want to do?
Over the last 15 years we have had 183 theatre majors and 23 theatre minors as graduates, and here is a short list of what they have done with their degrees.
A) Scholarships and Stipends
Theatre Scholarships - Annual awards to theatre majors, based on this criteria:
Theatre Activity Stipends - Awards for performing specific services to the department, available to any student for these eligible activities:
Recipients apply based on successful performance of activities, selection by theatre faculty.
Dorothy Harper Award - This is an annual award to a Theatre Major for excellence beyond expectations to the Department. Selection is made by Theatre faculty prior to March 1. Award announced at annual awards banquet in May.
B) Student part-time employment through Work-study and Regular college funds. Available to any qualified student.
Stage Technicians - 10 hours/week avg. @ 7.50/ hour - assist in the construction, lighting, painting, of all college performing arts events. Perform all stagecraft duties as required. Qualifications: Stagecraft 1 or previous stagecraft experience in high school or community theatres.
Box Office/Publicity - 10 hours/week avg. - take reservations, work box office for all productions, arrange publicity and distribute promotional materials. Qualifications: Previous customer relations experience. Computer skills in Desktop publishing, InDesign, Photoshop or other.