Theatre: Acting

The acting major at Western Michigan University receives a conservatory-style training program with a rigorous focus on the individual student’s own artistry, growth and professional placement. There are multiple skills needed to succeed in this highly competitive field. The acting major receives meaningful training in a variety of areas in the industry: film and media acting, ensemble-based devising, new play development, content creation, exceptional vocal and physical work, voice over work, professional prep, audition techniques, improv and challenging scene work from various genres. This stimulating curriculum provides the flexibility for the acting major to focus on the areas of training that most cater to their goals and sets our students up for designing the careers they want.

Our faculty and world-class guest teachers continue to work in their respective areas of the field to provide the most up-to-date training as the industry evolves. Students will strengthen their performance skills, develop meaningful relationships with their mentors, gain a broad knowledge of their future industry, and have ample opportunities to perform. We prepare our students for success.

Beyond the classroom

Our actors receive an exceptional array of performance opportunities in the department's undergraduate-only nine-show production calendar. These faculty- or guest-directed productions are offered in our three world-class theatre spaces. Onstage experience is also provided through department-supported, student-directed Footlight productions, directing classes, as well as opportunities for devised film work or new play development in supplemental production offerings each summer.  Additionally, acting majors have the opportunity to explore an interest in directing.

Professional and summer stock companies conduct on-campus auditions, and students have multiple opportunities to showcase their talents for industry agents and casting directors from New York and Chicago in immersive experiences unique to our department.

After you graduate

Recent WMU graduates with degrees in theatre acting are working as:

  • Actors
  • Directors
  • Voiceover artists
  • Casting directors
  • Agents
  • Producers
  • Teachers

Alumni work all over the world in touring productions. They can be seen in:

  • Broadway productions
  • Films
  • Television shows
  • Major regional theatres
  • Cruise ship productions

Career Outcomes

Where is this program offered?

  • Kalamazoo

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