Dr. Korey Rothman, Department of Theater

Students enrolling in this seminar should leave Wednesday evenings open to attend plays.

Everyone knows that Washington, D.C. is the seat of our national government, but many are surprised to learn the nation’s capital is also one of the country’s cultural capitals. With more than fifty professional theatre companies performing rich and varied repertoires, Washington and the surrounding area comprise the second largest theatre market in the United States. Additionally, the area abounds with successful theatre professionals–from world-renowned actors, designers, and playwrights to the people who guide a theatre’s artistic vision, to the advocates and policy makers who shape arts funding in the country. This vibrant and thriving community makes the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area an ideal laboratory for students to learn about theatre—how it is made, its relevance to contemporary audiences, and its position in American culture.

In this course, students will attend several live performances in a variety of area theatres, from the Folger Theatre, renowned for classical and Shakespearian productions, to the Wooly Mammoth, whose mission is to “defy convention” and “explore the edges of theatrical style and human experience” by promoting innovative and daring new plays.

When not in the theatre seeing productions or meeting theatre professionals, students will convene in a seminar style setting, as we explore what theatre is, how it works, and the role it takes in shaping the cultural landscape of our county.

The semester might culminate in a class trip to New York to attend a Broadway show. The instructor will let the students know at the beginning of the course.