Majors & Minors


Grounded in theatre history and criticism, dramatic literature, performance studies and theatre’s arts and crafts, Southwestern Theatre students receive education and training in the intellectual, artistic, and cultural dimensions of live theatrical performance.


Kerry Bechtel

Kerry Bechtel

Associate Professor of Theatre and Chair

Kerry Bechtel

Kerry Bechtel

Associate Professor of Theatre and Chair

The Theatre Department provides academic, production and laboratory experiences designed to help students develop their artistic potential and to become well-rounded theatre artists. We work to educate students who are well prepared for graduate schools and advanced theatre training programs and for work in the professional theatre. We are also dedicated to empowering individuals who will use the analytical, critical, practical and artistic skills inherent in the theatre discipline to entertain, educate, enlighten and contribute to their communities and the world in insightful and celebratory ways.

The Theatre Department offers a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) The degree is designed to provide students with a solid grounding in all areas of theatre studies including history, dramatic literature, performance, design, management, and technical theatre. Students who choose the Bachelor of Arts option often combine their work in theatre with work in other disciplines, are interested in graduate education focusing on research and scholarship, or are certifying to teach.

For students who are Work Study eligible as part of their financial aid package, there are numerous jobs in the area of the theatre, such as faculty assistants, box office staff, and backstage crew. Students interested in these positions should inquire through department head of the desired area.


Featured Alumni Stories

From the Stage to the Courtroom

An alumna advocates for women, giving back, and making a lasting impact.

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Rachel Hancock ’14

Painting for a Cause

Southwestern alumna Rachel Hancock ’14 uses her abilities to help a community she loves.

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Susan Slagle Rogers ’83

From Southwestern to Hollywood

A panda who becomes a kung fu master. A snail who wins the Indianapolis 500. These underdog stories have been big hits for Hollywood. They have also helped establish Susan Slagle Rogers ’83 as one of the animation industry’s most talented producers.

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Theatre News

Abigail Bensman

From Southwestern to Showtime: Abigail Bensman ’25 Shines on Stage

Business major Abigail Bensman fulfills her Broadway dream while enrolled at Southwestern after being cast as “Brenda” in the North American tour of the Tony Award-winning musical Hairspray.

Aidan Balakrishnan

Innovation Takes Center Stage

Student bridges theater and technology to create an automatic spotlight tracker.

Ashlyn Zunker

From Stage to Screen: A Student’s Journey into Filmmaking

Theater student juggles the rigors of school and a job on set.