Majors & Programs

Undergraduate Theatre (BFA)

Study the art and practice of stage performance in Boston, a world-class center for theater.

About the Undergraduate Theatre Major

With our location in the historic cradle of New England’s literary, theatrical, and cultural life, Emerson provides an unmatched setting for building a career in theater. Whether you are a future producer, director, playwright, dramaturg, or administrator, Emerson College’s Theatre BFA program will help you grow into a multifaceted practitioner of your craft.

Housed in the Department of Performing Arts in the School of the Arts, the Theatre program offers a learning environment compact enough for personal attention and close-knit artistic communities, yet celebrated enough to attract world-class talent, vibrant professionals, and eager audiences. You will explore all aspects of the world of theater through a curriculum that is artfully balanced between study and practice and grounded in the liberal arts. Upon graduation, you will be fully prepared to make your mark on the stage of life.

The BFA Theatre program allowed me to have a well-rounded experience and education….I would highly recommend it to any student who is passionate not only about theatre but also [about having] the space to explore their passions and hobbies outside of it.

Real-World Experience as a Theatre Professional

Theatre majors have ample opportunity to gain real-world learning experience. Here are a few examples:

  • Our campus is home to a vibrant student theater scene with 30 student performance organizations, including Acappellics Anonymous, Emerson Comedy Workshop, Emerson Shakespeare Society, and Flawless Brown.
  • Emerson Stage is the producing organization within the Department of Performing Arts. Its nine-show season offers more than 120 opportunities for actors, 100 positions for design staff, 70 for production staff, and another 70 for theater management staff and 30 artistic staff—all reserved exclusively for Performing Arts students.
  • As the professional presentation and production organization of the Office of the Arts at Emerson College, ArtsEmerson brings industry-leading theater and film from all over the world to the heart of downtown Boston. Through master classes, brown bag lunches, networking events, discounted tickets, and free student rush, ArtsEmerson gives students the chance to learn from cutting-edge artists.
  • Beyond campus, students intern at local theater companies, such as SpeakEasy Stage Company and Lyric Stage Company.

Careers for Theatre Majors

Our Theatre graduates obtain employment in the theater industry as well as associated fields. Examples of careers include:

  • Creative Director
  • Drama Therapist
  • Operations Manager
  • Playwright

Notable Performing Arts Alumni

  • Marisa McIlrath Jones, Associate Director of Education and Practical Learning, Huntington Theatre Company
  • Erin Ramirez, actor, Six, Les Misérables (touring)
  • Adam Riccio, LHMC, Expressive Arts Therapist, Dana Group Associates; Adjunct Faculty at Lesley University
  • Jon Wyand, Entertainment Manager, Walt Disney World

Meet Our Faculty

Performing Arts faculty are practitioners and scholars who teach on topics including theatre and disability, theatre history, women in theatre, and playwriting. They reside in the School of the Arts.