One of the great things about theatre is that it can encompass many different disciplines. Those who work or play in theatre know that it is so much more than meets the eye. If there was ever an art form where the tip of the iceberg metaphor applies, it is the theatre.
A college theatre student or any student can sometimes seem overwhelmed with the choices of electives thrown their way. So here are some electives that I have found can help develop skills that can carry over into the theatrical world.
If you have a mind that gravitates towards scientific reasoning, you might consider taking some psychology classes. It helps to have a vocabulary to some of the abstract concepts you deal with in theatre. Among so many other things, psychology students learn about motivation, emotion, and cathartics. All terms you will hear many times throughout your theatrical education and career. Psychology helps to understand human behavior, something you as an actor are attempting to replicate.
In many theatre classes, you will be asked to draw in some way. Be it costumes designs, drafting, set painting, or even a simple bird’s eye view design, you will at one point be asked to put a pencil to paper. A basic drawing class can help you hone this skill. It will also help to develop a composition instinct if you ever intend to direct.
Basic Business Class
Theatre is a business like any other and understanding the underlying functions of the business of theatre is important. Business course can help you gain survival job skills early on in your career. Learning about spreadsheets, technology, marketing and other skills can make you more valuable as an employee.
After a long rehearsal, it is easy for a starving artist to simply drive through for some fast food. Not to mention the tech week bags of chips and cups of coffee can add up the calories. An actor’s first and most important instrument is their body. It is important to take care of yourself in any field, so make sure to have knowledge of what you put in your mouth.