At A Glance

Carthage’s award-winning Theatre Department offers challenging classes, an ambitious performance schedule, and the chance to work with top names in the field. The central campus location allows the Theatre Department to bring in prominent guest artists from Milwaukee and Chicago. Students are active in every facet of Carthage’s original and classic plays.

Majors

  • Theatre 
  • Theatre Performance
  • Technical Direction
  • Technical Costume Design
  • Technical Stage Management
    Theatre Education, K-12 Licensure
  • Playwriting — New in 2023!

Minor

  • Theatre
    Costume Design
    Dance

View Degree Requirements

No. 2

Best School for Drama and Theater Arts in Wisconsin

Act. Direct. Build. Design. Do it all with Carthage Theatre.

New Play Initiative

Prominent American Playwrights Working with You.

Theatre majors performing in Carthage's New Play Initiative ?Memento Mori.? Carthage Theatre is committed to creating exciting, compelling new theatre works. Since 2008, Carthage Theatre has commissioned playwrights of prominence from around the country and the world to create original plays for our department and work closely with our students to bring them to life. These works receive their world premieres here at Carthage. This unique opportunity means that our students collaborate with playwrights currently active in the highest levels of the theatre world.

Carthage is regularly invited to perform these plays at the Kennedy Center’s regional American College Theater Festival, resulting in dozens of national awards and commendations.

Learn more about the New Play Initiative

 

Performance Opportunities for Theatre Majors

Students have many opportunities to be directly engaged in their craft as Carthage produces four faculty- or guest-directed Main Stage shows each year (one of which is always a musical) and multiple student-directed productions in our studio space.

Our Dance Program features a yearly faculty-choreographed concert and a student concert. Student directors also stage 2-3 full-length productions yearly in our 80-seat studio space.

current theatre season

past theatre performances

 

Courses in Carthage’s theatre program

Carthage theatre students can take courses in theatre history, directing, playwriting, dance, scene design, costume design, lighting, and more. Budding performers study acting theory, voice training, dance and movement, and scene work.

Acting students receive four semesters of acting theory, voice training, body alignment, and scene work. Students are involved in every aspect of theatrical production. These duties include hanging lights, sewing costumes, stage management, and many others.

Courses you’ll take

 

Latora Lezotte '20, a theatre degree major, and Prof. Kim Instenes work on a costume for a theatr... Degree Options for theatre majors

Carthage offers bachelor of arts degrees in theatre, theatre performance, technical direction, technical costume design, and technical stage management.

Carthage also offers teacher licensure, a dance minor, a costume design minor, and a degree in musical theatre. Admission to the program is contingent on an audition.

  • <div class="lw_widget lw_widget_type_blockquote"><blockquote class="blockquote"><div class="blockquote__image"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,521,754/36033_Sarah-Loster-25.rev.1666035209.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,521,754/36033_Sarah-Loster-25.rev.1666035209.webp 2x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,521,754/36033_Sarah-Loster-25.rev.1666035209.jpg 2x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,521,754/36033_Sarah-Loster-25.rev.1666035209.jpg" alt="Sarah Loster ?25" width="183" height="183" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,521,754/36033_Sarah-Loster-25.rev.1666035209.jpg 2x" data-max-w="521" data-max-h="754" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </div><div class="blockquote__content"><div class="blockquote__quote"><svg aria-hidden="true" class="icon icon-round-left-quote" width="48" height="33"><use xlink:href="#icon-round-left-quote"/></svg><p> “I chose Carthage because it was important for me to be at a college with small classes where I could get to know my professors.”</p></div><footer class="blockquote__footer"><span class="blockquote__author"><a href="/live/profiles/2099-sarah-loster">Sarah Loster</a> ’25</span></footer></div></blockquote></div>
  • <div class="lw_widget lw_widget_type_blockquote"><blockquote class="blockquote"><div class="blockquote__image"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.webp 3x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.jpg 3x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.jpg" alt="Paige Downey ?26" width="183" height="183" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2400,3200/39478_student_voices_-_paige_downey.rev.1712333453.jpg 3x" data-max-w="2400" data-max-h="3200" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </div><div class="blockquote__content"><div class="blockquote__quote"><svg aria-hidden="true" class="icon icon-round-left-quote" width="48" height="33"><use xlink:href="#icon-round-left-quote"/></svg><p> “Carthage, unlike big universities, allowed me to work on multiple theatre events and productions my first year instead of having to wait until my junior or senior year.”</p></div><footer class="blockquote__footer"><span class="blockquote__author"><a href="/live/profiles/2690-paige-downey">Paige Downey</a> ’26</span></footer></div></blockquote></div>
  • <div class="lw_widget lw_widget_type_blockquote"><blockquote class="blockquote"><div class="blockquote__image"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.webp 3x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.jpg 3x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.jpg" alt="Jessie Skonesey" width="183" height="183" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1169,783/38648_10591_163701665847155.rev.1697726402.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1169" data-max-h="783" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </div><div class="blockquote__content"><div class="blockquote__quote"><svg aria-hidden="true" class="icon icon-round-left-quote" width="48" height="33"><use xlink:href="#icon-round-left-quote"/></svg><p> “My biggest surprise so far was getting the main role in the play ‘Antigone.’ To play the main character in my first play at Carthage was the highlight of my freshman year.”</p></div><footer class="blockquote__footer"><span class="blockquote__author"><a href="/live/profiles/2542-jessie-skonesey">Jessie Skonesey</a> ’26</span></footer></div></blockquote></div>
  • <div class="lw_widget lw_widget_type_blockquote"><blockquote class="blockquote"><div class="blockquote__image"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,400,400/36441_Elizabeth-Neybert-25.rev.1669746281.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,400,400/36441_Elizabeth-Neybert-25.rev.1669746281.webp 2x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,400,400/36441_Elizabeth-Neybert-25.rev.1669746281.jpg 2x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,400,400/36441_Elizabeth-Neybert-25.rev.1669746281.jpg" alt="Elizabeth Neybert ?25" width="183" height="183" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,400,400/36441_Elizabeth-Neybert-25.rev.1669746281.jpg 2x" data-max-w="400" data-max-h="400" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </div><div class="blockquote__content"><div class="blockquote__quote"><svg aria-hidden="true" class="icon icon-round-left-quote" width="48" height="33"><use xlink:href="#icon-round-left-quote"/></svg><p> “My advisors and professors have encouraged me to take risks and take advantage of opportunities that are presented to me. They have helped me grow as a student and as an artist.”</p></div><footer class="blockquote__footer"><span class="blockquote__author"><a href="/live/profiles/2197-">Elizabeth Neybert</a> ’25</span></footer></div></blockquote></div>
  • <div class="lw_widget lw_widget_type_blockquote"><blockquote class="blockquote"><div class="blockquote__image"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.webp 3x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.JPG 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.JPG 3x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.JPG" alt="Sage McVay ?25" width="183" height="183" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.JPG 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/127/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1342,1792/35771_Sage_McVay_25.rev.1664396049.JPG 3x" data-max-w="1342" data-max-h="1792" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </div><div class="blockquote__content"><div class="blockquote__quote"><svg aria-hidden="true" class="icon icon-round-left-quote" width="48" height="33"><use xlink:href="#icon-round-left-quote"/></svg><p> “Students should consider being a stage management major because a stage manager is a huge role in the theatre world and is an underrated job. Plus, it is one of the most rewarding fields to go into.”</p></div><footer class="blockquote__footer"><span class="blockquote__author"><a href="/live/profiles/2075-sage-mcvay">Sage McVay</a> ’25</span></footer></div></blockquote></div>
  • <div class="lw_widget lw_widget_type_blockquote"><blockquote class="blockquote"><div class="blockquote__image"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,300,400/38991_Emily-Halfmann-25.rev.1705078148.webp 1x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,300,400/38991_Emily-Halfmann-25.rev.1705078148.jpg 1x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/89/width/183/height/183/crop/1/src_region/0,0,300,400/38991_Emily-Halfmann-25.rev.1705078148.jpg" alt="Emily Halfmann ?25" width="183" height="183" data-max-w="300" data-max-h="400" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </div><div class="blockquote__content"><div class="blockquote__quote"><svg aria-hidden="true" class="icon icon-round-left-quote" width="48" height="33"><use xlink:href="#icon-round-left-quote"/></svg><p> “The wonderful thing about Carthage is that there are many different types of performance opportunities, so if you don’t get cast in a show right away, there are other opportunities to audition and perform within the department.”</p></div><footer class="blockquote__footer"><span class="blockquote__author"><a href="/live/profiles/2244-">Emily Halfmann</a> ’25</span></footer></div></blockquote></div>

beyond the classroom

Visiting Professionals

In addition to commissioning guest playwrights through the New Play Initiative, Carthage regularly invites respected professional theatre practitioners to campus to work with students. Recent visiting professionals include Tony Award-winning scenic designer Todd Rosenthal, Steppenwolf casting director Erica Daniels, and Milwaukee Repertory Theater associate artistic director Sandy Ernst. 

Student Organizations

Theatre majors may be interested in Neil- Futurists, a rule-breaking theatre group inspired by a Carthage class or improv group Merely Players. Alpha Psi Omega, a national honor society, honors top theatre scholars.

Opportunities for Carthage theatre majors