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CCM: About

CCM: About
The courtyard outside of CCM's Patricia Corbett Theater.

The courtyard outside of CCM's Patricia Corbett Theater.

Academic Programs & Majors

The University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music offers more than 100 undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate programs. Refer to the chart below for more information on the types of degrees offered by each program and click on the degree titles to view specific degree plans.

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What is Theater Design and Production : Stage Design?

Stage design, scenic art and prop making is the art, craft and practice of designing and implementing theatrical 3-D environments for drama, opera, musical theatre, dance performance, live concert events, film, video and television productions and themed events and venues. Though similar in some ways to interior or architectural design, stage design and scenic painting go beyond decoration to visually and environmentally support and thematically expand a script, screenplay or scenario by facilitating human interaction and/or choreography within the context of a theatrical event.

The successful stage design, scenic painting and prop making student is highly motivated, engaged and excellent at creative problem solving.  Stage designers must be intellectually curious people eager to develop their artistic talents in the visual and decorative arts, be passionate about working collaboratively and enjoy and excel in working with their hands and their minds simultaneously as they acquire a broad-based knowledge of theater arts and technical production. Stage designers must be able to easily visualize objects and environments in 3D and imagine interesting ways to tell a dramatic story moving through time and space.  

Scenic painting and prop making support scenic design and are intrinsic to the art form. Scenic painting students must possess talents for drawing and painting and must be able to work well with others.  Students aspiring to careers in prop making must be organized, highly motivated, organized and excellent creative problem solvers eager to work with their hands.  

Career Possibilities

Undergraduate and graduate Stage Design, Scenic Painting, and Prop Making students of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) have been, or are now currently employed in design, drafting, model making, scenic panting, and prop making, and film, media and television design with The Metropolitan Opera, Playwright’s Horizon, Central City Opera, Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, South Coast Repertory, Opera Theater of Saint Louis, Wolf Trap Opera, Minnesota Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, The MUNY in Saint Louis, Shakespeare Theater St. Louis, The Denver Theatre Center, Cirque du Soleil, The Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Toledo Ballet, Utah Shakespearean Festival, Spoleto Opera Theatre, Chicago Lyric Opera, Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Stages St. Louis, American Players Theatre, Santa Fe Opera, The Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, The Shakespeare Theatre (DC), Glimmerglass Opera, Cincinnati Ballet, Disney, Broadway, and national tours, as well as Art Direction and Set Design for commercial and independent film companies. Representative titles are: James and the Giant Peach, Angels and Demons, House of Cards, X-Men: First Class, Spider Man 3, Shrek 2, Saving Private Ryan, The Academy Awards, Gone Girl, Coraline, the Man in the High Castle, and Little Voice.

Majoring in Theater Design and Production : Stage Design

Our Teaching philosophy and methods stress the actual "experience of doing" where real production experience supersedes the theoretical whereever feasible or desirable.  The number of realized stage design, scenic painting and prop making opportunities will vary depending on a studnt's growth and ability.

All BFA stage design, scenic painting and prop making undergraduates take drawing, 2D, 3D, CAD, desing studio and production courses as well as courses in other design adn production areas in a combination of concise intros, full year basic courses and one adn two-year advanced sequences depending on talent, growth, and interest in the major area.  Students alos study theater history, script analysis , dramatic literature, English, world, European and or art history, supplemeted with more courses in liberal arts and the humainiies, science and free electives as needed.

The balance between theater, theater-related, academic, and free elective courses is established by NAST (National Association of Schools of Theater), which has accredited our program.  The University of Cincinnati has adopted a Genteral Educatiuon Program, that our degree conforms to and includes a senior year capston experien ce, typically a realized stage design prop master, or scenic charge project undertaken in the studnets's senior year.

Minoring in Theater Design and Production : Stage Design

Students can not minor in stage design. It is a full-time course of study due to the demanding currciculum and time requirements for the labs, produciton practicum, and homework.

Curriculum

These tools assist students to identify course requrements and individual progress toward completion of academic programs.

It is importasnt to utilize these resources with personalized guidance from teh Theater Design and Production faculty advisor and the UC academic staff advisor for your program regularly to ensure timely graduation.

Advising

Stage Design, Scenic Painting and Stage Props Advisors:

  • Professor Thomas C. Umfrid  513  556-9452   umfridt@ucmail.uc.edu
  • Assistant Professor Mark Halpin  513 556-9418  halpinma@ucmail.uc.edu

UC Advantages and Special Opportunities

The UC CCM TD&P stage design, scenic painting and prop making faculty are first-tier teaching professionals and instruct and inspire students in actualized  projects beyond the room. Our teaching philosophy and methods stress the actual "experience of doing," where real production experience supersedes the theoretical wherever feasible or desirable. 

The quality of instruction is matched by the exemplar facilities. Beyond the rooms and drafting studio, students spend much of their time perfecting their skills and developing their talents in the CCM scenery, props and painting workshop and theatres. The CCM scene shop is a generously sized 8,500 square foot  space with 24’ clear vertical space and is extremely well equipped. The scenic workshop is the center piece of the Corbett Center for the Arts and came online in the late 1990’s and was designed by the architecture firm of Pei, Cobb and Freed.

Students create for all three main performance spaces: The 740-seat Corbett Auditorium is one of the most visually striking and acoustically balanced college theatres in the nation. Corbett Auditorium is very well equipped with a 54'-0" proscenium, hydraulic orchestra lift, dimmer-per-circuit lighting and extensive sound and video circuiting.  Corbett Auditorium won the prestigious 1997 USITT Meritorious Achievement Award for Outstanding New Theatre.

The 400-seat Patricia Corbett Theater features a modified-thrust stage with a 42'-0" proscenium opening.  Designed by Ming Cho Lee - this theater has a Bayreuth orchestra pit and steeply raked intimate seating.

The Cohen Family Studio Theater is a one-of-a-kind flexible space. This venue incorporates a unique architectural 'apse' within the outer structure of a more traditional large black-box with a multitude of staging possibilities through the use of modular seating. The theater, with flexible seating for approximately 150, serves as the home for CCM's workshop series and laboratory productions.

Admission Requirements

For specific admissions information, International student requirements and application deadlines please visit the CCM Admissions website.

Transferring to UC Requirements

In the case of transfer students from member schools of the National Association of Schools of Dance, National Association of Schools of Music, the National Association of Schools of Theatre, or other properly accredited institutions, credits previously earned with a grade of C or better in liberal arts courses paralleling those in the College-Conservatory curriculum generally will be accepted. Transcript evaluation takes place after acceptance and prior to registration, usually during the summer preceding initial matriculation.

Acceptance of transfer credit in those major theatre production course specifically required for the respective degree programs will be determined by an appropriate audition or examination. In additon to fulfilling UC and CCM transfer admission requirements:

For consideration into Stage Design, Props and Scenic Art,  the applicant must present a portfolio demonstrating artistic proficiency in drawing, painting and crafts work demonstrating, among other skills and talents, a flair for the dramatic and theatrical and an ability to perceive and manipulate space.  Prior experience in applied theatrical design and technical production work, though beneficial, is not necessary to be considered for entrance into the Stage Design area of study.

For further information and criteria for admission please visit the CCM Admissions website .

Changing Majors within UC Requirements

In the case of students changing majors within UC, credits previously earned with a grade of C or better in liberal arts courses paralleling those in the College-Conservatory curriculum generally will be accepted. Transcript evaluation takes place after acceptance and prior to registration, usually during the summer preceding initial matriculation. Acceptance of transfer credit in those major theatre production courses specifically required for the respective degree programs will be determined by an appropriate audition or examination.

In additon to fulfilling UC and CCM changing majors within UC  admission requirements:

For consideration into stage design, props and Scenic Art,  the applicant must present a portfolio demonstrating artistic proficiency in drawing, painting and crafts work demonstrating, among other skills and talents, a flair for the dramatic and theatrical and an ability to perceive and manipulate space.  Prior experience in applied theatrical design and technical production work, though beneficial, is not necessary to be considered for entrance into the stage design area of study.

For further informaiton for admissions please visit the CCM Admissions website .

Graduation Requirements

Continuation and graduation in this program is based on a semesterly portfolio review of satisfactory progress in course work and production assignments.

In addition to your University grade point average (GPA), your semesterly GPA for all of your CCM/TDP undergraduate curriculum courses must be at least 3.0 or higher. Students earning less than a 3.0 GPA in these courses will be subject to review, possible program probation, or dismissal. Additionally,

UNIVERSITY OF CINCINNATI COLLEGE-CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC 

Bi-annual portfolio reviews will take place within each productionarea. Failure to show progress in professional aptitude may result in program probation or dismissal.

Advancement to the second year and each succeeding year in theatre design and production is by permission of TD&P faculty review board, which meets annually to evaluate student performance and progress. A student’s merit is determined by , lab, production work, and professional attitude and potential.

A C- is the minimum acceptable grade for core theatre design and production courses (16THPR). If the student earns a D+ or less, the course must be repeated until an acceptable grade of C- or better is earned.

In the senior year, the student must successfully complete the capstone project and successfuly complete the major core curriculum in stage design, props, and scenic art. 

Accreditation

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

 

The stage management program is also accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST) and the University and Resident Theatre Association (URTA).


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