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What's in a Name? CCM Drama Is Now Acting

CCM Acting student Laura Carter

CCM's Drama Department will now be known as the Acting Department to better reflect the scope of training and experiences designed to take students beyond the stage to work in various mediums of performance. In addition, the new CCM Acting Department will offer the BFA in Acting instead of the BFA in Dramatic Performance.

Once housed in the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, the Drama Department had a long history of teaching theatre in a liberal arts setting and once offered the BA in Theatre Arts. The department moved to CCM in 1983 with a new focus and degree, the BFA in Dramatic Performance. The focus at the time was exclusively on the stage and the study of theatre and drama.

Fast-forward 33 years — graduates of the program are finding work from coast to coast and internationally in film, television, commercials, voice-overs and on stage. CCM Acting trains actors for all media and offers students acting experience in a variety of mediums.

“Our degree name sounded like an antique, with a limited focus on the stage,” said Richard Hess, Professor of Acting and A.B., Dolly, Ralph and Julia Cohen Chair of Dramatic Performance at CCM.

“But that’s no longer true. We train actors. The ‘triple threats’ we create in CCM Acting are students who can succeed on stage, film, and in the creation of new works.”

In recent years, the new Acting Department has embraced various multimedia efforts to give students a well-rounded education in acting. The department worked with CCM’s E-Media program to create a 48-Hour Film Festival and to shoot an original film with the new Digital Media Collaborative.

CCM Drama’s name change to Acting will go into effect immediately.

“We have often said, ‘we make actors.’ Now we match,” Hess said. “Our new identity will position our strength more clearly to the world.”

Learn more about the history of CCM Acting here.