The performing arts certificate program offers deaf, hard-of-hearing, and hearing students the opportunity to develop knowledge of standard theatrical operating procedures as well as principles and practices of theater accessibility for deaf people, allowing them to work in professional, regional, and community theater. It also provides a solid foundation for those who wish to pursue further education in film, video, theater, and related forms of performing arts.
The performing arts certificate is offered to students enrolled in degree programs at NTID and the other colleges of RIT as an enhancement to their portfolio of general academic, career, and technical skills. It is not a stand-alone certification. The certificate was primarily developed to broaden employment opportunities for graduates in design and imaging, communications and related business areas, industrial technologies, and other fields by expanding their repertoire of marketable skills. It is designed to provide students with knowledge of theater terminology, practices and protocols, issues in script analysis, ASL translation and accessibility; and experience in performance and technical theater. Students must take three 3-credit courses from NTID’s Performing Arts Program and a production practicum (at least one credit hour) to meet the certificate requirements. The three additional courses are in areas such as stagecraft, acting, scenic and lighting technology, and scenic painting and props, to name a few.
This course applies technical, performing, script analysis, stage management, and other skills to an actual theatrical production. Students contract with a department mentor for responsibilities and the appropriate credit expectations. In addition to production responsibilities, students are expected to complete reading and writing assignments connected to the production. This course is repeatable for credit. (Enrollment in this course requires permission from the department offering the course.) Lec/Lab (Fall, Spring).
Choose three of the following:
Introduction to Performing Arts
This course will examine the characteristics and elements of theatre and the performing arts, emphasizing the principles and conventions that guided theatre productions through history. The course examines the ways that theatre influences and is influenced by cultures and by individual life experience. Particular attention is paid to the development of scripts, visual theatre, theatre vocabulary, and the emergence of Deaf and multicultural theatre. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring, Summer).
Introduction to Stagecraft
This course introduces students to the technical and design processes of theatre, including scenery, costume, lighting, make-up, and prop craft. Students experience the range of skills needed to create successful productions, and identify their own areas of interest and strength for future theatre participation. Lecture 3 (Fall).
Sign Mime, Creative Movement, and Visual Theatre
This course expands students’ understanding of the use of physical space through creative movement strategies. These are supplemented by images, gesture, and sign representation of story elements. Techniques developed from visual theatre practices are studied. Through active participation, students learn the language of movement, mime and visual theatre. Ensemble work based on performance standards, character creation, and theme development is emphasized. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
Independent Study: Performing Arts
The description will be specified on each Independent Study Contract. Ind Study (Fa/sp/su).
Appreciation of Theatrical Design
This course fosters the understanding and appreciation of design as part of theatrical productions with specific reference to the fields of scenic, lighting, and costume design and the personnel involved. Students will explore the historical and cultural aspects of theatre while examining the relationship to their activities in everyday life. Students will learn how theatrical scripts and stage directions influence the design, aesthetics, and use of space in a theatrical production, and how to use the script to visualize the design process. Deaf Theatre and other cultural references will be used to discuss the ever growing need to address diversity and accessibility in theatrical productions. Emphasis will be placed on using literary analysis of themes and metaphors inherent in a script to develop an appreciation for the artistic and aesthetic aspects of technical theatre. No artistic or technical skills necessary. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
Appreciation of Media in Performance
This course fosters the understanding and appreciation of the integration of media to support and enhance storytelling in theatre, dance, and experimental performances. Focus will be placed on the study and appreciation of media in performance through an exploration of theory, historical perspectives, and creative expression. Examples of media from early integration to current practices will be explored, as well as the various types of technology and equipment used. Deaf Theatre and other cultural references will be used to discuss the need to support accessibility and create inclusive environments. Instances where media and technology were used to push the boundaries, as well as to develop and test new technology, will also be examined. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring, Summer).
Scenic Painting and Props
This course is an introduction to the methods and materials of theatrical painting and props through a project-oriented class. Techniques, communication, and use of appropriate materials and tools are emphasized. Students apply the skills learned to individual and group projects. This course prepares students for more specialized work in Theatre Practicum. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
This course introduces students to the principles and techniques associated with theatrical stage makeup. Through practical application and experimentation, students will be encouraged to explore a variety of methods, materials, and possibilities for a range of character types; including fantasy and special effects makeup techniques. Students will be provided lectures, handouts, and class and video demonstrations throughout the semester. Lec/Lab 4 (Fall Or Spring).
Appreciation for Theatrical Costumes
This course is designed as an introduction to the theory and application of costume and accessory design for the stage. Students will explore the artistic, historical, and technical aspects of creating costumes and accessories, learning about key vocabulary, equipment, and materials used in costume technology. Influences on design theory will be examined through examples from Deaf Theatre and cultural, physical, and visual-based performances. Students will gain an appreciation for the relationship that costumes and accessories contribute to the overall meanings of dramatic performance. Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
Appreciation for Theatrical Scenery
This course introduces students to the study and appreciation of technical theatre through an exploration of theory, historical perspectives, and creative expression of theatrical scenery. Students will explore the principles, techniques, and tools used in creating scenery. Attention will also be placed on the evolution of theatrical scenery throughout time, theories and application of design elements, and the impact of the growth of technology over the last century. Influences on design theory will be examined through examples from Deaf Theatre and cultural, physical, and visual-based performances. Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
Total Semester Credit Hours
Applicants for the performing arts certificate must be students in good standing in an undergraduate program at RIT, or hold an undergraduate degree from RIT.
Candidates must complete or have already completed an undergraduate degree program from RIT to receive this certificate.