Technical Design and Production
Bronislaw Joseph Sammler, Chair
M.F.A. and Certificate
Contemporary theatre design and production practices are profoundly influenced by the technology and economics of our age. The diverse aesthetics and the increasingly complex electronic and mechanical components now being used in the performing arts point up the need for professionals who can understand and apply these technologies to the achievement of artistic goals. The department seeks well-educated and highly motivated students who will best be able to use the resources of Yale School of Drama/Yale Repertory Theatre and the University to expand their professional abilities and deepen their professional interests in theatre and the performing arts.
This program of study provides academic and practical training for professionals who can perform with excellence in producing organizations, consulting firms, manufacturing companies, and universities. The exceptional placement record of graduates who have trained in the unique environment offered by Yale School of Drama/Yale Repertory Theatre emphasizes the career value of the graduate program of study.
Technical management requires a wide range of skills and knowledge. The department’s sequence of required courses focuses on key principles of the physical and social sciences and their application to performing arts technology. Concurrently with the required sequence, each student pursues elective courses that leads to a concentration in Technical Direction, Production Management, Stage Machinery Design and Automation, or Theatre Planning and Consulting. Degree candidates also prepare a research thesis in their chosen area of concentration.
To assure complete training, the department maintains a faculty and staff of thirty-five, whose courses cover a wide range of topics including production management, lighting, sound and video technology, mechanical design, automation, structural design, acoustics, theatre engineering, computer applications, show control, AutoCAD, and technical writing. In addition, the department’s weekly seminar features guest lectures by noted professionals. Students are encouraged to augment their studies with courses from other departments in Yale School of Drama and from other schools at Yale University including Architecture and Management, or Engineering and Applied Science.
Finally, to afford students the opportunity to develop and test newly developed skills, the department requires that each student complete eight production assignments at Yale School of Drama/Yale Repertory Theatre. Individually tailored to each student’s skills and professional goals, the production assignments represent a sequence of increasingly demanding production experiences.