Theatre Arts

College of Arts and Humanities

Division of Performing, Visual and Digital Media Arts

Department of Theatre and Dance


Bachelor of Arts

Dance Option

Theatre Arts Option



Theatre Education

Theatre Performance



Subject Matter Preparation Program

(for requirements, refer to the English section in this catalog)



Donis Leonard, Chair

William DeLuca, Sharrell Luckett, Doris Ressl

Program Office: LCH A-109, (310) 243-3588

Emeritus Faculty

Rex Heuschkel, Carol A. Tubbs, Sydell Weiner


Program Description

The Theatre Arts Option offers courses in the field of acting and directing, design and technical theatre, theatre history, dramatic literature speech and drama for the class.  The Dance Option offers courses in the field of ballet, modern, jazz, tap, dances of world cultures to include hip hop, Middle Eastern Dance, African, Latin Social Dance, choreography, dance history, and dance production.  Course requirements for theatre and dance in the major and minor programs provide for flexibility and allow students considerable choice in planning their academic careers.

The Theatre and Dance Programs prepare students in all areas of theatre (Performance, Design/Tech, and Literature/History) and dance (Performance, Choreography, and Technique).  Our program is multi-cultural and multi-ethnic by nature and offers a wide range of dance styles and theatre techniques to explore.  The Theatre Performance Minor focuses on acting and directing, while the Theatre Education Minor doubles as both a general program and preparation for future teachers.  The Dance Minor focuses on dance technique, choreography, and performance. 

The Department of Theatre and Dance is closely affiliated with the Division of Performing, Visual, and Digital Media Arts at CSU Dominguez Hills.  Students and faculty often collaborate with others in Art, Music, and Digital Media.


All Theatre Arts Option Majors and Minors participate in the department's ambitious production program through acting, scenic design and construction, lighting, stage management, box office operations, and the student-directed one-act program.  Students receive academic credit for their participation.  The ability for freshman and sophomore Theatre Arts majors to secure roles in a major production and receive individual attention from faculty is far more likely than at a larger university.  The Theatre Arts Program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST).  NAST is located at > 11250 Roger Bacon Drive, Ste. 21, Reston, VA  22090.

The Dance Option offers each student the opportunity to develop creative and technical skills to become leaders in the field of dance as choreographers, dancers, and teachers in studios, private and public schools.  In dance, two large dance studios are available to students.  Both studios are equipped with sprung floors, mirrored walls and the main studio has ballet barres, a grand piano, and audiovisual systems.  Ballet and modern classes have live music accompaniment.  Ample locker and shower facilities are also available.  Dance students have unique opportunities to perform in a fully equipped, modern university theatre, which seats over 400 audience members.  Two dance concerts are held each year, one in each semester.  There are also opportunities to perform at various campus events held throughout the year.  The Dance Program is a member of the American College Dance Festival Association.  Students have the opportunity to participate in the ACDFA annual festival and adjudication concerts in the Baja Region.

Academic Advisement

The Theatre Arts and Dance Programs place great importance on the advisement process.  We request that students meet with their respective advisors for consultation.  To obtain an advisor, students should contact the Department's Administrative Coordinator to schedule a first meeting.  Educational goals and previous theatre and dance experience will be discussed during the first advisement meeting.  Based on this discussion, the progression of the student's major and minor requirements will be planned.  Career opportunities will also be discussed.  If transferring from a community college or another four-year university, the student should bring a copy of his/her transcript. 

Dedication and commitment are the keys to the successful pursuit of a career in theatre and dance.  To help students achieve high academic and production standards, the department requires all majors and minors to pass their required classes with a "C" grade or better.  Students who receive lower than a "C" will need to "Repeat and Cancel" that course in the following semester.


The Theatre Arts Option strongly suggests that students wishing to major in theatre arts be able to deal effectively with the English language.  Six to eight courses of college preparatory English are advised.  In addition, students have a strong background in vocal skills and basic movement capabilities.  Since the theatre affects and makes use of the whole person, awareness, and development of the human body and voice are equally important as the development of the human mind.  Therefore, students are urged to take courses in speech, diction, singing, dance, fencing, stage combat, yoga, Pilates, and other recreational activities.

In the Dance Option, it is strongly suggested that students pursuing a career in dance study ballet, modern and jazz dance techniques.  In addition, students should take advantage of all available choreography and performance opportunities and view as many dance performances as possible.  In addition to high school graduation requirements, the student should study art, music, acting, literature, philosophy, and kinesiology.  While attending community college, students should seek choreographic and performance experience in theatre presentations and attend as many dance performances as possible.  Most dance technique courses taken at community colleges in ballet, modern, jazz, tap, and other selected dance styles will transfer to satisfy the lower division requirements for the Dance Option Major and Minor.

Career Possibilities

Theatre Arts Option

Opportunities in the field of acting are expanding as a result of the establishment of year-round professional acting companies, the growth of summer and winter stock companies, outdoor and regional theatre, repertory companies, and dinner theatre.  Commercial television, cable television, the Public Broadcast System (PBS), and the movie and music industry employ a large number of actors, as well as other talented personnel.  Opportunities also exist in university and community theatre programs.

Related careers available to graduates include the following occupations:  actor, playwright, drama coach, dramaturge, theatre historian, critic, designer (set, lighting, sound, costume), make-up artist, technician, theatre manager, director, producer, announcer, recreation director, dancer, musician, entertainer, arts administrator, sales representative, model, dramatic agent, governor of California, and President of the United States .

Many graduates in the Theatre Arts Option find secondary careers in the field of education.  Our majors and Theatre Education minors learn how to adapt theatre games, improvisation, pantomime, and storytelling, to help their students in primary and secondary classrooms to develop social, communication, creative, and problem solving skills.

Dance Option

The Dance Option is designed for students who desire to become a performer, choreographer, or teacher.  The purpose of the major is to provide students with a broad-based foundation in dance and to prepare them for graduate dance programs, auditioning for and performing in dance companies, teaching opportunities in public schools, private dance studios, fitness programs, theatre, television, industrial shows, and working in "the business."  Many graduates in Dance often find secondary careers in the field of education, dance therapy, arts administration, and technical theatre.

Student Organizations

  • Toro Forensics- is an award-winning Speech team that competes annually in Public Speaking, Debate, and Oral Interpretation tournaments held throughout Southern California.  Students acquire excellent training in speech support, articulation, organization, and non-verbal delivery skills.
  • Teatro Dominguez- open to all students, provides high quality theatrical programs that inform, delight, and promote cross-cultural understanding in the Dominguez communities.  As actors and directors, discussion leaders, stage managers, playwrights, and business managers, members receive a full experience in developing life skills that will make them effective leaders in tomorrow's pluralistic society.
  • The New African Grove Black Theatre Program (BTP)- provides courses, touring shows, and workshops that illuminate the Black experience for people of all ages and ethnic groups.  BTP also offers academic scholarships to students interested in playing a leadership role in promoting African-American arts on campus.
  • Toro Dance Club is open to all students interested in dance.  The dance club works to expand the breadth of the dance program by sponsoring master dance classes and performances.
  • American College Dance Festival Association (ACDFA)- Interested dance students have opportunities to attend the annual festival and participate in the adjudication concerts.  Students will meet students from college dance programs from throughout the Baja Region, take master classes, perform in adjudication concerts, receive performance feedback, and experience dance from other undergraduate and graduate academic institutions.

Graduation With Honors

An undergraduate student may graduate with Honors in Theatre Arts if the following criteria are met:

  1. A minimum of 36 units in residence at CSU Dominguez Hills.
  2. A minimum GPA of at least 3.5 in all courses used to satisfy the upper division requirements.
  3. Recommendation by the faculty in the department of program in which the honors are to be awarded.


Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts

Total Course Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree

See the "Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree" in the University Catalog for complete details on general degree requirements. A minimum of 40 units, including those required for the major, must be upper division.

Elective Requirements

Completion of elective courses (beyond the requirements listed below) to reach a total of a minimum of 120 units.

General Education Requirements (55-62 units)

See the "General Education" requirements in the University Catalog or the Class Schedule for the most current information on General Education requirements and course offerings.

Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement

See the "Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement" in the University Catalog.

Major Requirements (42-43 units)

The following courses, or their approved transfer equivalents, are required of all candidates for this degree.

A.  Lower Division Required Courses (8 units):

DAN 210. Ballet I (2)

THE 251. Script Analysis (3)

THE 264. Acting I (3)


B.  Upper Division Required Courses (5 units):

THE 346. Theatre Workshop (3)

THE 499. Senior Project (2)


Dance Option (29-30 units)

(see Dance section for course descriptions)

A. Lower Division Courses (9-10 units)

1. Required Courses (8 units):

DAN 200. Jazz I (2).

DAN 215. Ballet II (2).

DAN 220. Modern Dance I (2)

DAN 225. Modern Dance II (2)

2.  Select one course from the following (1-2 units):

DAN 110. Dance of World Cultures (1)

DAN 120. Tap Dance (1)

DAN 205. Jazz II (2)


B. Upper Division Courses (20 units)

1. Required Courses (14 units):

DAN 310. Ballet III (2)

DAN 320. Modern Dance III (2)

DAN 330. Beginning Choreography I (2)

DAN 335. Beginning Choreography II (2)

DAN 340. Dance Production (1)

DAN 345. Music for Dance (2)

DAN 355. History of Dance (3)

2. Select three courses from the following (6 units):

DAN 300. Jazz III (2)

DAN 305. Jazz IV (2)

DAN 315. Ballet IV (2)

DAN 325. Modern Dance IV (2)

DAN 430. Intermediate Choreography (2)

Technique Advancement

 Students may advance to a higher level in a dance technique requirement if they receive permission from the Dance Coordinator.


Theatre Arts Option (30 units)

A. Upper Division Required Courses (21 units):

THE 342. Design/Tech I: Fundamentals of Theatre Design (3)

THE 343. Design/Tech II: The Design Experience (3)

THE 346. Theatre Workshop (3)

THE 355. World Theatre and Drama I (3)

THE 357. World Theatre and Drama II (3)

THE 364. Acting II (3)

THE 374. Stage Directing (3)


B. Elective Courses (9 units):

THE 322. Oral Interpretation of Literature (3)

THE 329. Forensics Workshop (3)

THE 337. Creative Dramatics (3)

THE 339. Multicultural Children's Theatre (3)

THE 353. Playwriting (3)

THE 464. Acting III (3)

THE 490. Seminar in Theatre Arts (3)

THE 494. Independent Study (1, 2, 3) (up to three 3 units)

THE 495. Special Topics in Theatre (3)


Minor in Theatre Performance (18 units)

A.  Lower Division Required Courses (6 units):

THE 251. Script Analysis (3)

THE 264. Acting I (3)


B.  Upper Division Required Courses (12 units)

THE 346.  Theatre Workshop (3)

THE 364.  Acting II (3)

THE 374.  Stage Directing (3)

THE 464.  Acting III (3)


Minor in Theatre Education (18 units)

A.  Upper Division Required Courses (18 units):

THE 337. Creative Dramatics (3)

THE 339. Multicultural Children's Theatre (3)

THE 342. Design/Tech I: Fundamentals of Theatre Design (3)

THE 346. Theatre Workshop (3)

THE 355. World Theatre and Drama I (3) or

THE 357. World Theatre and Drama II (3)

THE 374. Stage Directing (3)


Minor in Speech (13 units)

A.  Upper Division Required Courses (13 units):

THE 320. Speech Skills and Techniques (3)

THE 322. Oral Interpretation of Literature (3)

THE 326. Persuasion (3)

THE 329. Forensics Workshop (2)


B.  Recommended Course:

THE 323. Interpersonal Communication (3)


Course Offerings

The credit value for each course in semester units is indicated for each term by a number in parentheses following the title. For course availability, please see the list of tentative course offerings in the current Class Schedule.

Lower Division

THE 100          Television, Film and Theatre (3).

Appreciation of the performing arts of television, film, and the live theatre through the viewing of films and videotapes, as well as attendance at plays and musicals.

THE 120          Fundamentals of Speech (3).

Introduction to the basic principles of speech communication. Classes cover the use of organization and evidence in speech preparation, and emphasize research and performance techniques. Students develop speeches for a variety of topics and situations. A-C/NC grading.

THE 160          Acting for Non-majors (3).

Introductory course for non-majors who wish to develop awareness and control of the voice and body while building self-confidence, and improving concentration and imagination.

THE 251          Script Analysis (3).

A study of classical and contemporary dramas in terms of plot, character, theme, and language. Students analyze one script per week.

THE 264          Acting I (3).

An integrative approach to the actor's emotional, intellectual, physical, and vocal tools. Exercises in characterization, voice, and movement will be emphasized.

Upper Division

THE 320          Speech Skills and Techniques (3).

Effective and persuasive oral communication in a variety of situations: formal address, group discussion interviews, chairing of meetings, and others. Of particular value for Liberal Studies majors, managers and business persons.

THE 322          Oral Interpretation of Literature (3).

Principles and practice in the effective delivery of readings in drama, poetry, and prose.

THE 323          Interpersonal Communication (3).

Prerequisite: THE 120.

Introductory study of interpersonal communication in face-to-face interaction; consideration of interpersonal roles, needs, barriers, perceptions, and adaptation.

THE 326          Persuasion (3).

Discussion of techniques in argumentation and debate; logic, reasoning, and fallacies of reasoning; gathering and testing of evidence, construction of bases, and skills of refutation; practical application through debates about current issues.

THE 329          Forensics Workshop (2).

Intercollegiate competition in debate, persuasive speaking, oral interpretation, reader's theatre, and other competition events. Independent projects in specialized fields. (Only 4 units may be used toward the minor.) Repeatable course. Six hours of production per week.

THE 337          Creative Dramatics (3).

Creating, planning and assessing dramatic exercises, including theatre games, pantomime, and improvisation. Of particular value to prospective teachers of young children.

THE 339          Multicultural Children's Theatre (3).

Analysis of educational theatre, multicultural plays, and folktales. Students discuss educational theatre production and how to create culturally-enriching programs at K-12 schools.

THE 342          Design/Tech I: Fundamentals of Theatre Design (3).

A course in Theatre Arts Utilizing research, discussion and workshop demonstrations in order to integrate the six major areas of theatre design: scenery, costume, lighting, makeup, properties and audio.

THE 343          Design/Tech II: The Design Experience (3).

Prerequisites: THE 243.

Students are assigned design projects both on and off campus, where they can apply their skills. Students will work under the supervision of lead and/or master designers.

THE 346          Theatre Workshop (3).

Participation in any aspect of campus theatre or television production including (but not limited to) acting, stage management, scenery, lighting, costume, construction, audio, properties, box office, promotion, and running crews. This participation includes attendance at Theatre Arts productions for the semester enrolled.

THE 353          Playwriting (3).

Theory and practice in writing for the stage. Students explore plotting, characterization, and dialogue; scenes and short plays are submitted for discussion and evaluation.

THE 355          World Theatre and Drama I (3).

History and literature of the theatre from its origins through the 16th century. Emphasis on production styles, cultural background and literary trends.

THE 357          World Theatre and Drama II (3).

History and literature of the theatre from the 16th century to the present with emphasis on production styles, cultural background and literary trends.

THE 364          Acting II (3).

Prerequisites: THE 264 or consent of instructor.

The actor's approach to a role, including text and character analysis. Performance of scenes from plays. Vocal work on dialects with concentration on melody, rhythm, and sound substitutions. Beginning movement work in body alignment, centering and balance.

THE 367          Acting for the Camera (3).

Prerequisite: THE 160 or consent of instructor.

Techniques of directing and performing before the camera. Scenes and presentations will be videotaped both in the studio and on location.

THE 374          Stage Directing (3).

Prerequisites: THE 264 is recommended.

Theories and techniques of directing for professional or educational play production. Students develop the ability to research, analyze and conceptualize in order to plan the rehearsal and performance of a play script. Attendance at the Theatre Arts two mainstage productions is required.

THE 464          Acting III (3).

Prerequisites: THE 264 and THE 364 or consent of instructor.

Study and performance of period scenes involving methods of approaching various types of plays and specific problems they present the actor. Emphasis on the synthesis of analysis, action, characterization, subtext, vocal problems posed by verse and exploration of advanced movement techniques.

THE 490          Seminar in Theatre Arts (3).

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.

Discussion and exploration of advanced problems in Theatre Arts. Intensive study of one or more subjects relating to the theatre and drama. Three hours of seminar per week.

THE 494          Independent Study in Theatre Arts (1-3).

Prerequisites: Consent of instructor and department chair.

Investigation of a single topic, chosen in consultation with a faculty member, culminating in a paper, presentation, or project. Repeatable course.

THE 495          Special Topics in Theatre (1-3).

Study of a single topic in drama and theatre, to be determined by the instructor. Topic varies each offering. Repeatable course. One to three hours of lecture per week.

THE 496          Off-Campus Internship (1).

Prerequisites: THE 326 and THE 328.

Directed work experience in the industries of local professional theatre, cable television, broadcast stations and networks, production houses, or motion picture studios under the supervision of a professionally-qualified mentor. CR/NC grading only. Repeatable course. Ten hours of work experience per week.

THE 499          Senior Project (2).

A capstone course culminating in the production of a final, collaborative project. Selected in consultation with and evaluated by a faculty panel.

Infrequently Offered Courses

The following courses are scheduled on a "demand" basis. Students should consult the department office for information about the next schedule offering.

THE 453          Contemporary Drama (3).

A study of plays by American and international writers from the last twenty-five years. Emphasis on the works of playwrights from traditionally underrepresented groups.