theatre studies, college of performing arts

College of Performing Arts

» BA in Theatre, Theatre Studies

Learn from a core education of acting, directing, technical theatre, history and literature while personalizing your education with a focus in theatre studies.

This will take you through the application process for an undergraduate BA in Theatre, Theatre Studies degree and make sure you know how it works from start to finish. Be sure to visit all five sections below for pertinent application information.

+ - Deadlines

Please visit the University’s How to Apply page for undergraduate application deadlines.

+ - Common Application and Creative Supplement Requirements

The following items must be submitted to be considered for admission to the Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Studies:

  • Creative Supplement: This is your artistic portfolio reviewed by the faculty based on artistic talent and program readiness. Please be prepared to answer a few short answer questions.
  • Theatre Resume: This should include your training, teachers, performance and technical experience. Include the names of theatres and directors you have worked with, as well as any media work you have done. You may want to include awards and any summer scholarships you have received.
  • Goal Statement: Please submit a goal statement addressing the following questions:
    • How do you envision yourself contributing to theatre and to society as a student and artist?
    • How will studying theatre at Chapman University prepare you for a life in theatre?
  • Photograph: Please upload a photo of yourself so we can identify you; professional headshots are not required.
  • Letter of Recommendation: The letter should come from your most recent theatre instructor or a professional with whom you have studied. You can request this recommendation through your applicant status page once you have submitted your Common Application. Your recommender will receive an email prompting him or her to submit a recommendation on your behalf. Keep in mind this letter of recommendation is specific to the Department of Theatre and is separate from the letter(s) required by the Office of Admission.

+ - In-Person Portfolio Requirements

This is only for students who plan on presenting and interviewing in person.

Portfolio (in-person presentation and interview):

Once your Common Application and Creative Supplement have been submitted, you will gain access to your applicant status page where you will be prompted to register for an in-person interview. Please be prepared to present the following for your in-person interview:

  • Theatrical Portfolio: Create a theatrical portfolio of 3-8 pieces that document and demonstrate your experience in areas of interest to you, as well as your range of skills in theatre. Your portfolio should include projects that involve but are not limited to: acting, directing, stage management, technical work, playwriting, dramaturgy, and/or producing projects. Examples may consist of notated scripts, original essays or scripts you have written, production videos, digital films, programs from shows you have worked on, and/or photographs.
    • If using digital media, please bring your own laptop/device.
    • We will not keep your portfolio.
  • Monologue (Optional): You have the option to perform a 60-second acting monologue during your interview. This is not required but offered for those who are interested.

+ - Upload Portfolio Requirements

If you are unable to present your portfolio in-person, please submit these materials via your Applicant Status Page. Additionally, you may be contacted by a member of the theatre faculty for a phone or Skype interview. The information below describes the process if you are unable to present in-person.

  • Portfolio (Upload): Once your Common Application and Creative Supplement have been submitted, you will gain access to your Applicant Status Page where you will be prompted to upload your portfolio/media pieces.
    • Theatrical Portfolio: Create a theatrical portfolio of 3-8 pieces that document and demonstrate your experience in areas of interest to you, as well as your range of skills in theatre. Your portfolio should include projects that involve but are not limited to: acting, directing, stage management, technical work, playwriting, dramaturgy, and/or producing projects. Examples may consist of notated scripts, original essays or scripts you have written, production videos, digital films, programs from shows you have worked on, and/or photographs.
      • PowerPoint is not an accepted format.
    • Monologue (Optional): You may perform a 60-second acting monologue via upload. This is not required but offered to those who are interested.

Recording your Monologue (Portfolio Upload applicants only)

  • Internal editing and zooming is discouraged, but you may walk into a closer shot if desired.
  • Use a neutral background with suitable lighting and sound equipment. We need to see and hear you clearly.
  • Please do not use costumes, stage makeup or extraneous sound effects.
  • Label your monologues once they've been uploaded using the "edit details" tab.
  • Do not submit videos of actual performances. They will not be viewed.

+ - Suggestions for Choosing a Monologue

  • Choose a piece from a published play (film and television monologues are discouraged).
  • Do not select a stand-alone monologue. Instead, choose a monologue from a play that provides context and character motivation.
  • Choose a monologue with a character that is close to your age, and for whom you would be cast today.
  • Choose a monologue that is active. Know whom you are talking to and what you want from them.
  • Choose a monologue that you care about. Your engagement and interest is likely to translate into your performance.
  • Avoid dialects, excessive prop use, cartoon or two-dimensional characters and exaggerated characterizations.
  • Avoid overdone monologues (they often lead to predictable acting choices) unless you are able to make it uniquely your own. Googling "overdone monologues" is recommended! 
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Contact Us

John Benitz
Chair, Department of Theatre
(714) 744-7055
benitz@chapman.edu