Introduction to Devised Performance/Physical Theatre

The Devised Performance/Physical Theatre concentration develops collaborative theatre artists who conceive, design, direct and perform highly athletic, visually stunning, interdisciplinary projects that shape today’s evolving theatrical landscape. 

Integrating aspects of theatre, film, design, music, performance art and emerging technologies, students create original and adapted performance works through intensive and multi-dimensional collaboration. They graduate with specialized skills incorporating the emotional availability, creativity and transformational capacity of an actor, the athleticism and physical expression of a dancer, a choreographer’s eye for shape, movement and balance, a director’s sense of conceptualization, collaboration and leadership, a designer’s vision for sound, place, image and light, and a writer’s focus on language and story. They learn formal skills for successful collaboration, and train in processes for providing productive and meaningful feedback that make them highly sought-after following graduation. Visit the university catalogue for more information

New theater program spotlights collaborative performance 

The Orange County Register » OCregister.com • Thursday, November 17, 2022

devised theatre

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One of the first of its kind in the country, our innovative BFA in Theatre with a Concentration in Devised Performance/Physical Theatre develops collaborative theatre artists. Actors who conceive, design, direct and perform highly athletic, visually stunning, interdisciplinary projects that shape today’s evolving theatrical landscape. 

Integrating aspects of theatre, film, design, music, performance art and emerging technologies, actors in Devised Performance/Physical Theatre create original and adapted performance works through intensive and multi-dimensional collaboration. Our students graduate with specialized skills incorporating the emotional availability, creativity and transformational capacity of an actor, the athleticism and physical expression of a dancer, a choreographer’s eye for shape, movement and balance, a director’s sense of conceptualization, collaboration and leadership, a designer’s vision for sound, place, image and light, and a writer’s focus on language and story.

PROGRAM OVERVIEW

Grounded in rigorous training in acting, voice, speech, movement, playwriting, directing and design, Devised Performance/Physical Theatre BFA actors are challenged to create studio, main stage and multimedia projects that showcase ingenuity and flexibility. Students make meaningful connections between traditionally separate fields and disciplines, as they imagine and execute original live performances, films, podcasts, solo shows, voice-over for video games and animation, as well as aerial arts, stage combat and dialects. Students learn formal skills for successful collaboration, and train in processes for providing productive and meaningful feedback that make them highly sought-after following graduation.

Students in CSUF’s Devised Performance/Physical Theatre BFA Concentration:

• Create and/or perform in original, adapted and/or scripted material
• Create original work exploring prescient social issues and/or current events
• Write, perform, direct and/or design devised and physical theatre productions for
our theatres, site-specific venues and non-traditional spaces.
• Participate in interdisciplinary collaborations that integrate original compositions,
live music, film, projections, graphic design, puppetry, trapeze and animation

Global partnerships offer the potential for international study and performance opportunities.

Our Devised Performance/Physical Theatre program is one of three Theatre B.F.A (Bachelor of Fine Arts) concentrations offered here at CSUF alongside a B.F.A in Acting and B.F.A in Musical Theatre. CSUF is also home to a diverse and thriving Bachelors of Arts in Theatre.

CORE CURRICULUM

Innovative training is required for 21st Century storytelling – training that enhances traditional actor training, to include the demands of new styles of storytelling.

In addition to the rigorous general education curriculum required for all CSU students, the BFA in Devised Performance/Physical Theatre roadmap for first-time freshman and transfer students roadmaps may be accessed hereOpens in new window .

LIMITED ENROLLMENT

We select up to twelve (12) students for each incoming class. Everyone in a Devised Performance/Physical Theatre cohort will perform in productions and projects, while some may develop additional interests in writing, directing or design.
We are not a “cut” program. Individual Learning Plans track student progress and target areas of recommended growth and/or improvement. These are revisited and updated at the end of each semester. Once you are accepted into the BFA in Devised Performance/Physical Theatre, it is our commitment to train and support you for as long as you wish to study with us.

STUDENT/FACULTY RATIO

Students in Devised Performance/Physical Theatre can expect varying student/faculty ratios based on subject matter and optimal learning conditions. Most performance/studio classes boast an average 12:1 student faculty ratio.
Our CSUF Department of Theatre & Dance faculty consists of award-winning professional actors, directors, musicians, choreographers, dancers and designers with careers ranging from Broadway, Off-Broadway, national tours, regional theatre, film, television, commercials and voiceovers. You will study under professionals who walked the very path you intend to walk, and who are eager to share their knowledge and expertise with you.

PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITIES

Devised Performance/Physical Theatre students audition for all department productions and are eligible for casting beginning their freshman year or first semester in residence.

Every Fall and Spring, there is a Devised Performance/Physical Theatre production in our Main Stage season. Each semester, there are numerous additional performance opportunities in plays, musicals, showcases, studio productions and special projects directed by faculty, guest artists, MFA and BA students.

AFTER GRADUATION

Our Devised Performance/Physical Theatre training significantly increases our students’ marketable skills and employment opportunities after graduation:

  • A rapidly changing entertainment industry necessitates a constant need for original content and new talent. Devised performers are trained to conceive, produce, direct and perform their own material and thrive in this marketplace.
  • In addition to traditional avenues for actors in film, television and commercials, many alumni pursue emerging platforms to showcase their work, such asnational and international fringe festivals, webisodes, podcasts, video games, voice acting, animation, social media and filmed theatre.
  • Increasingly, professional theatres include many productions with devised aesthetics in their seasons.
  • The modern workplace is characterized by collaboration, teamwork, improvisation, innovation and creativity. Effective leadership requires astute levels of emotional intelligence. Devised Performance students cultivate these skills as they shift from leader to follower, learning to integrate multiple initiatives, think on their feet, structure ideas, tactfully articulate feedback and respectfully disagree. These skills increase marketability and employment opportunities across a spectrum of entertainment and non-entertainment industries.
  • Our training supports an industry-wide call for more female diverse directors, writers, producers, actors, choreographers and artistic directors.
  • The highly collaborative nature of devised work creates a strong sense of community, comradery and friendship amongst practitioners across disciplines that will sustain them professionally beyond CSUF.

AUDITION INFORMATION

Auditions for First-Time Freshmen (FTF) and transfer students are held in the Fall and Spring of each academic year. Current Freshmen (students who have completed the first year of CSUF voice/movement coursework THTR 141A & THTR 141B) are eligible to audition at the end of their first year of study for entry into the 2nd year of B.F.A training.

More information for first time freshmanOpens in new window

More information for transfer studentsOpens in new window

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Last Published 2/22/24

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