LONG BEACH—Long Beach State University has one of the 25 best theatre arts programs in the United States for students who want to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in the field, according to a new ranking.
“We know that we have one of the top theatre programs for students in the Southern California area, and we hope that more students from around the country also come to train with us,” Theatre Arts Department chair Jeff Janisheski said, following publication of the rankings.
OnStage Blog, which also reviews theater productions in California, New York and elsewhere, ranked the top 25 university-level theatre arts programs that are strictly-focused to allow students to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree, as opposed to a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Long Beach State took the 12th spot in the rankings.
The coursework leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre arts gives students a chance to experience a broad range of activities, such as acting, directing, design and writing, within the art form, Janisheski explained. Bachelor of Fine Arts programs, however, typically involve conservatory-style learning in one particular aspect of theatre arts.
The Bachelor of Arts option, according to OnStage Blog, is often a solid choice for students who are also interested balancing their studies with the likes of a second major or a study abroad option.
At present, undergraduate students at Long Beach State can pursue a general Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre arts that covers a range of subjects including acting, technical and design crafts, and theatre history and criticism. Students may also choose a performance-focused option, as well as a technical theatre option centered on scenery, lighting, costuming and makeup.
Theatre Arts faculty plan to debut a Bachelor of Fine Arts in acting in the near future.
“Our performance alums are working across media: From shows on Amazon, CBS and Fox to major films and theatre in New York and Los Angeles,” Janisheski said. “And our tech and design graduates are getting work for major companies in the Los Angeles area, or working at regional theatres around California. This ranking is a testament to the incredible efforts of our talented faculty and staff.”
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