Theatre Arts

M.F.A. in Theatre


The M.F.A. in Theatre is a 60-credit, two year, full-time program, including summer sessions, and includes a core curriculum that all students will complete, as well as individual tracks in acting, playwriting, and directing. The program features the creation of a theatre company, and therefore enrollment in each year will be limited to enhance experiential components. Performances by the company, including the thesis project, will take place in New York City at a rented theatre, providing students with professional credits on their resume along with their degree. A special collaboration with Tilles Center of The Performing Arts to create a children’s theatre production each year will provide students with additional opportunities in the lucrative field of theatre for young audiences.


ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
In addition to meeting all requirements for admission to Long Island University, applicants must have a bachelor’s degree, preferably in theatre, from an accredited institution. Bachelor’s degrees in related arts areas may be considered.

  • All applicants must submit two letters of recommendations from people familiar with either their work in theatre, their work as a student, or their work in an area related to theatre.
  • All applicants must submit a personal statement, describing their goals in theatre and why they believe an M.F.A. from LIU Post will help them to achieve their goals.
  • All candidates who submit a completed application with supporting materials as listed below will be interviewed if appropriate.

Applicants for the Acting track must audition and interview for the program. Auditions should be in person either on campus or at a regional or national unified audition event. International candidates or those who are unable to audition in person may submit a video audition via Accepted (https://app.getacceptd.com/liu). Specific instructions about audition requirements may be found at: www.liu.edu/post/audition.

Applicants for the Playwriting track must submit one original full-length play or two one act plays. No screenplays, adaptations, translations, television, or radio scripts are accepted, Plays must be formatted in either Samuel French or Dramatists Play Service style, and sent as a PDF file, either as an email attachment (to: Post-Theatre@liu.edu) or via the Acceptd website (https://app.getacceptd.com/liu).

Applicants for the Directing track must submit a portfolio via the Accepted website (https://app.getacceptd.com/liu). This portfolio should contain production books of previous work directed by the candidate, as well as video of directed productions if available. Student work is acceptable, including production books of shows that were never produced or only presented in a classroom setting. The production book should contain a complete script analysis, with theme and character descriptions, blocking notes, any research done in connection with the script, and a discussion of your point-of-view about directing the play.

Application to the program is for entry in the fall semester only.


INTERNATIONAL STUDENT ADMISSIONS:
The ability to speak, read, and understand English fluently is an important factor in admissions decisions. All applicants for whom English is not the native language (regardless of citizenship) must demonstrate English language proficiency with a TOEFL score that meets the minimum requirement, with the exception of:

  1. those who have attended an English language school for four years; AND
  2. have/will complete a 4-year undergraduate degree at an English language institution with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Minimum TOEFL iBT scores for the M.F.A. in Theatre are:
Reading: 25
Listening: 25
Speaking: 25
Writing: 25

Candidates should be aware that other graduate programs at LIU Post might have different TOEFL score standards.

M.F.A. applicants who will have studied full time for at least six years at English-speaking institutions prior to enrolling at LIU Post, including four years at an undergraduate institution, may request a waiver of the TOEFL score. Years spent in full-time ESL or ELL programs do not count towards the six-year minimum requirement. To apply for a waiver of the TOEFL:

  • Submit a letter explaining your academic background and enclose official transcripts totaling six years of study in English (include all college and high school transcripts as needed). It is acceptable for the applicant to be in the sixth year of study if currently enrolled in an English-speaking institution. Transcripts should show strong grades in academic classes.
  • The letter and all transcripts must be included in the same envelope; transcripts that are received separately from the letter will not be reviewed and the waiver request will be considered incomplete.
  • Incomplete or late requests will not be considered, without exception.

Applicants who are not granted a waiver will be required to submit an official TOEFL score, as noted above.


GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS:
A total of sixty (60) credits with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 are required for graduation. In addition, students in the Playwriting track must submit a final draft of a full-length play; students in Directing must submit a production book and video of their final project. Students in Acting are required to submit a completed production book of their final project, and a thesis paper on the process of creating the role or ensemble in their thesis project.

CURRICULAR OUTLINE OF TYPICAL FULL-TIME COURSE OF STUDY, WITH OPTIMUM COURSE SEQUENCE:
The M.F.A. in Theatre has a required core curriculum that all students take, ranging from 39 credits for Actors to 42 credits for Playwrights and Directors.


CORE: (39 credits - Actors) - (42 credits - Directing/Playwriting)
THE 521 Graduate Acting Theory and Practice: Realism 3.00
THE 531 Directing 3.00
THE 581 Production Practicum II: Devising #.##
THE 590 Performance History/Theory I 3.00
THE 503 Performance History/Theory II 3.00
THE 548 New Play Development* 3.00
THE 511 Theatrical Entrepreneurship 3.00
THE 552 Professional Skills/Portfolio 3.00
THE 707 Thesis Research 3.00
THE 708 Thesis Production 9.00
Students in the Acting Track
THE 580 Production Practicum 3.00
Students in the Playwriting and the Directing Tracks
THE 580 Production Practicum: 6.00

In addition, students take a track in one of three areas: Acting (21 credits), Playwriting or Directing (18 credits). The courses in these tracks are as follows: (*) indicates new course; others are currently in the curriculum.

ACTING TRACK: (18 credits)
THE 522 Graduate Acting II: Classical 3.00
THE 540 Suzuki Technique 3.00
THE 541 Voice & Speech 3.00
THE 550 Stage Combat 3.00
THE 542 Movement Intensive: Le Coq Technique 3.00
THE 591 Post Modern Theatre Practices 3.00
PLAYWRITING TRACK: (18 credits)
THE 545 Playwriting I 3.00
THE 546 Playwriting II 3.00
CIN 589 Screenwriting 3.00
THE 547 Playwriting III 3.00
THE 549 Collaborative Playwriting 3.00
DIRECTING TRACK: (18 credits)
THE 532 Directing II 3.00
THE 550 Stage Combat 3.00
THE 582 Production Practicum: Evening of Short Works #.##
THE 542 Movement Intensive: Le Coq Technique 3.00
THE 591 Post Modern Theatre Practices 3.00
THE 500A Observership: Beginning Suzuki 0.00

Course sequencing is arranged in a lock-step manner, and with an attempt to maximize individual class quotas.

PLEASE NOTE: Because enrollment of playwright and directors is being kept to a minimum, courses in those disciplines may be taught as independent studies.

Credit and GPA Requirements
Minimum Total Credits: 60
Minimum Major GPA: 3.00


CONTACT

College of Arts, Communications & Design
Steven Breese, Dean

Moreen Mitchell, J.D.
Assistant Dean
Moreen.Mitchell@liu.edu