Ball State’s bachelor of fine arts (BFA) degree in musical theatre is designed to give you outstanding preprofessional training within a liberal arts education. Our goal is to prepare you to enter the industry with the skills to handle a variety of styles, genres, and time periods within the musical theatre canon.
The BFA in musical theatre is an interdisciplinary program offering you individual vocal instruction, weekly studio master classes, courses in musicianship (music theory, sight singing, piano, and ensemble singing), as well as comprehensive acting and dance training.
- Our undergraduate-only program allows you numerous opportunities to perform and learn experientially.
- You will be closely monitored and evaluated each semester through rigorous classroom work and performance juries.
- We are dedicated to introducing you to new works, having created the Discovery New Musical Theatre Festival, a unique and nationally recognized festival providing a stepping stone for new writers to move their work forward, with workshops and readings featuring our own students.
- The curriculum allows you to participate in exciting immersive learning and study abroad opportunities.
- You will have numerous on-campus workshops with professional casting directors and other industry professionals throughout your four years of training.
- You will have the opportunity to audition for senior showcases in New York and Chicago, and an LA Experience in Los Angeles.
- We are an active, award-winning participant in the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival (KCACTF).
- The BFA in musical theatre requires 85 credits, along with the additional 33 credits of core courses and two general electives that are part of the university’s core curriculum.
Download the Full Eight-Semester Plan (PDF)
Our musical theatre faculty will inspire you with rigorous and diverse training in singing/musicianship, dancing, and acting.
- Our low student-to-faculty ratio will allow for your personal development as an individual artist.
- You will receive hands-on advising and mentoring from a faculty of working artists with extensive experience in the professional world.
- Our distinguished guest faculty includes two-time Tony Award winner Sutton Foster and Emmy Award winner and Broadway musical director Michael Rafter.
- Every year, we host internationally renowned distinguished guest artists
Our dedicated, caring faculty will immediately welcome you into our community and guide you throughout your entire experience at Ball State. Our acting faculty have worked professionally in New York, Chicago, and regional theatre.
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Performance and Work Opportunities
You will always have opportunities to work—both in and out of the classroom—to get you ready for the real world of professional theatre.
- With as many as 20 performances each year in our mainstage, studio, and workshop spaces, you will have numerous opportunities to perform in a wide variety of musicals, dance pieces, and plays.
- You will be eligible to audition for productions the second semester of freshman year.
- Professors will assist you in finding internships, professional work, and summer training opportunities all over the globe. Recent placements include Actors Theatre of Louisville, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Drury Lane Theatre, Open Jar Institute, and Williamstown Theatre Festival, among many others.
Ball State musical theatre alumni are ready to enter the industry as soon as they graduate, and they love nothing more than helping each other and future graduates of the program.
- Ball State musical theatre alumni are working all over the country—on Broadway and Off-Broadway, in Chicago, on national tours, in regional theatre, and in film and television.
- Ball State has active and supportive alumni networks in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and other major cities.
Recent acting alumni credits include Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812 on Broadway, This is Our Youth at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, The Glory of the World at Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Christians at Mark Taper Forum, and television appearances on The Good Wife, Elementary, and Madam Secretary.
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In addition to faculty who are working professionals, we bring in distinguished guest artists on a regular basis to work with you—in classes, workshops, and the production season. These seasoned practitioners will enrich your educational experience immeasurably, while also allowing for professional networking opportunities.
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Paying for Your Education
On top of the many forms of financial aid Ball State offers, the Department of Theatre and Dance offers a wide variety of merit and need-based scholarships to our own students at all levels and in all areas. We provide tens of thousands of dollars in support to make the college experience more affordable.
Apply to the Program
Are you interested in the BFA in musical theatre? You must audition for admission into the program. We hold on-campus auditions, and we participate in the National Unified Auditions in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles.
You must apply for admission to the university prior to scheduling your audition. Audition requests are made by filling out the supplemental theatre application that is part of the online application to the university.