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Humanities & Fine Arts

Theatre Arts


Our department offers several exciting options:

The Professional Actor Training Program (PATP): a two-year program for students who desire to pursue career in theatre, film, and television. See tabs on right

Theatre Arts Major: See T.T.P. Details below
Theatre electives: See Catalog below


There is no more exciting place to learn and refine the skills of theater, television, and film than Chattanooga State. Sherry Landrum, Rex Knowles, and company have brought the best of The New Actors Workshop curriculum from New York to our caring and manageable campus; and they are making this exceptional program available at a fraction the cost. This program will transform your life — on and off stage!

Sincerely, James L. Catanzaro President


We are the only actor training program that offers four semesters of improvisation. Think about it. Today's industry values both the depth and psychological realism gained from acting techniques and the flexibility, spontaneity, and relaxation gained from improvisation. We are one of the few training programs that offers continuity of faculty. Your acting, improvisation, and speech teachers work with you for two years. Imagine the training you get from teachers who know your work.

We do not cull the class after the first year.

We want to work with you for two years.


  • 5 days a week.
  • 21 class hours per week + rehearsals.
  • 14 fully staged productions presented last year.
  • 4 short films written and shot last year.


Tuition is under $4,000 for the entire year!

You get New York style acting training for a fraction of the cost of other programs.



FIRST YEAR: (32 credit hours)

Acting I & II (THEA 1110/1120)

Grounded in Stanislavski and informed by the work of George Morrison, one of America's premiere acting teachers. Designed to develop moment-to-moment awareness and a framework of given circumstance and relationship.

Improvisation I & II (THEA 1520/1525)

Developed from the work of Viola Spolin, Paul Sills, and Keith Johnstone. Moment-to-moment spontaneity, flexibility, and creativity.

Movement I & II (THEA 1230/1235)

Body awareness, group and partnering, exploration of movement as an integral part of the actor's performance skills.

Voice & Speech I & II (THEA 1410/1420)

Exercises to develop a voice free of unnecessary tensions, spontaneously responsive to both internal and external stimuli.

Introduction to Theatre (First Semester - THEA 1310)

Survey of drama and stagecraft from its beginning to the present; analysis of significant plays from outstanding periods of theatre history; enhances understanding and appreciation of the theatre. (meets general education requirement for associates degree)

Stagecraft (Second Semester - THEA 1320)

Exploration of the terminology, tools, and techniques of theatrical stagecraft. Introduction to principles of lighting, sound, costume, and scenic design with practical application. Introduction to production including rigging, tools, construction, lighting, sound, costumes, and safety.

SECOND YEAR: (32 credit hours)

Acting III & IV (THEA 2110/2120)

Deepening awareness and the relationship between the internal and the external process. Scene analysis and its application. Exploration of classical texts beginning with Chekhov. The scene study/acting technique work culminates in a performance project.

Improvisation III & IV (THEA 2520/2525)

Deepen focus and spontaneity. Intuit story structure. Long-form improvisation, Story Theatre, and Friday Night Comedy Improv performances.

Movement III & IV (THEA 2230/2235)

Introduction to social dances of the Elizabethan era and the 19th and 20th centuries dances including jazz, tap, and musical theatre dance.

Voice & Speech III & IV (THEA 2410/2420)

Work on freeing regionalisms and clarifying enunciation. Linking voice to text. Study and performance of monologues from Shakespeare.

The Audition Process (First Semester - THEA 2310)

Practical application of the audition process from selection of material to presentation. Explores the interview, cold reading, and the business of acting including professional conduct, photos, resumes, and marketing strategies.

Production Practicum (Second Semester - THEA 2320)

Exploration of the front and back of house components necessary to present a professional theatrical production. Includes stage management, crew, design, construction, marketing, box office, and house management. Practical application for end of semester productions.

Students interested in Musical Theatre training, add Musical Theatre (THEA 2430) to their PATP classes


For current tuition, please see Chattanooga State's tuition and fees.

Students with a 3.5 GPA, ACT composite score of 25 or higher, or SAT score of 1130 or higher are eligible for the Honors Acting course.

Out-of-state students who qualify for Honors Acting pay in-state tuition.


Tuition and fees for one year:
Professional Actor Training at Chattanooga State $ 3,875
American Academy of Dramatic Arts (New York) $ 31,330
American Musical and Dramatic Academy (New York) $ 31,820


Admission into the Professional Actor Training Program (PATP) is by interview and audition only. Complete and submit the application. We will contact you to schedule an audition. Download application.

For the audition, prepare one contemporary monologue, within your age range, no more than two minutes in length. Auditions will continue until the class is filled.


Certificate Details

What Can I Do With This Major


Program brochures provide detailed information about the program of study such as admission requirements, checklists, cost, required courses, career opportunities and more.

Click here for a Program Brochure
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