About the Department of Theater

Southern Illinois University



College of Liberal Arts

actor in macbeth

About the Department of Theater

The SIU Department of Theater offers the right combination of scholarship, experience and imagination — an effective blend of academic work, production experience and creative thinking — to prepare you for a life in Theater. Housed in the Communications Building on the southwest corner of the Southern Illinois University Carbondale campus, the Department combines the advantages of a large University experience with the personalized attention found at smaller colleges and the excitement of a fully functioning theater production company. A core faculty of ten, with support from a number of professors from other departments, serves the needs of approximately 20 MFA/PhD students and 75 undergraduates.


As an art form, theater reflects ideas and traditions of society at large. To get the best education possible, it's vital that you understand and study theater in its broad, liberal arts context. The more you know, the better you work. In addition to University Core courses, theater majors and minors take essential theater core courses, including: theater history, play analysis, acting, stagecraft, directing and stage makeup. Also, to provide a well-rounded experience, you will work as a technician on at least one major project each semester for up to four semesters. Academic credit is awarded for performing in and working on departmental productions.

Experience and Skill

We produce a season of four to six full-mounted productions each year plus numerous workshop productions, play readings, special events, master classes with guest artists and other production opportunities. You will have the chance to explore live theater and develop the necessary skills to compete in the art and industry of Theater. Whether you write the play, direct it, design it, build it, act in it, or study, opportunities abound.


All theater starts with a creative imagination. Actors, directors, playwrights, performers, even teachers and technicians enrich the vitality of their work through imagination. Elective courses will stimulate and exercise your creativity and imagination. All undergraduate theater majors are assigned a faculty mentor from their specific area of study to aid them with the selection of elective courses and to offer guidance on their careers at SIU and beyond. At SIU Theater we are here to challenge and channel your imaginative power. Let us help you ignite your creative spark and hone your skills as an artist.

For detailed information about Admission, Tuition and Fees, or any other SIU related information, visit the SIU website.

SIU is located in Carbondale, IL, in southern Illinois at the intersection of Highway 13 and State Highway 51. It has a resident population of approximately 25,000 and an additional 20,000+ students.

J. Thomas Kidd, Chair
Department of Theater
Southern Illinois University
Carbondale, IL 62901
Mail Code 6608
(618) 453-5741

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