Master of Arts in Applied Theatre

Format: On Campus
Application Deadlines
  • Fall 2021 Priority Deadline: Pending
  • Fall 2021 Regular Deadline: Pending

Master of Arts in Applied Theatre

The MA in Applied Theatre degree program, the first program of its kind in the United States, uses theatre as a medium for education, community development, and the pursuit of social justice. The goal of the program is to educate scholar practitioners to become future leaders in the field of applied theatre. Applied Theatre involves the use of theatre and drama in a wide variety of nontraditional contexts and venues, such as in teaching, the justice system, health care, the political arena, community development, museums, and social service agencies.

Follow the MA in Applied Theatre blog on tumblr.

Career Prospects

Graduates of the program are prepared for careers as teaching artists with theatres, museums, hospitals, and other community-based organizations; education directors for cultural organizations; facilitators of youth programs; creative aging artists; health and wellness theatre program specialists; conflict resolution; and activities specialists with development programs, aid agencies, and refugee support programs.

Students in the Program:

  • Practice actor-centered, collaborative approaches to leading creative teams and playbuilding original theatre
  • Study a range of artistic, educational, and social theories that inform progressive practice
  • Collaborate as a member of a student ensemble to support creative risk-taking
  • Progress through carefully sequenced courses with an emphasis on the unity of theory and practice
  • Devise and perform theatre-in-education interventions in New York City schools and community settings 
  • Develop work alongside the renowned CUNY Creative Arts Team
  • Research, implement, document, and evaluate an original applied theatre thesis project.

Curriculum

  • 10 Core Courses (30 Credits)
  • 2 Elective Courses (6 Credits)

Sample Courses

  • Community, Culture, and Diversity
  • Playbuilding
  • Teaching through Theatre
  • Theatre of the Oppressed
  • The Co-intentional Director
  • Creating Meaning Through Community Drama
  • Study abroad: Project Rwanda

Connect with us

Follow our Facebook page!  Follow our Tumblr page!


Admissions Criteria

Applicants must possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, with a GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale. Applicants are required to write a personal statement, upload a resume, and provide two letters of recommendation. An individual interview may be necessary.

We encourage applications from people with a variety of undergraduate majors and professional backgrounds. Theatre experience, formal or informal, is expected. Applicants who meet the basic eligibility criteria may be asked to take part in an artistic review.

Students are admitted to the program each fall and can enroll in either a full- or part-time course of study.

Funding Opportunities

In collaboration with the CUNY Creative Arts Team, CUNY SPS and the MA in Applied theatre are proud to offer the Graduate Apprenticeship for Diversity in Applied Theatre. Follow the link for details.

Application Deadlines

  • Fall 2021 Priority Deadline: Pending
  • Fall 2021 Regular Deadline: Pending
Apply Now

Student/Alumni Profiles

Jessica Cortez

MA in Applied Theater

"I decided to double major in theatre [in college] because I saw it as a platform that I could use to talk about those issues, and really dive into social narratives, and express people’s stories that aren’t typically told."

Sindy Castro and Morgan Booker

MA in Applied Theater

S: "I’ve taught for other programs and helped to oversee other programs, but I wanted to figure out what it is I’m interested in doing and how to do it." M: "My favorite moment was in theories, in my group project. Our topic was learning theories based on Lisa Delpit, Jonathan Kozol, and bell hooks. I never thought I’d have fun researching."

Recent News About Master of Arts in Applied Theatre

Stack of books and eyeglasses sitting on top

CUNY SPS Applied Theatre Alumni Publish Article in Academic Journal

February 27, 2020

Three alumni from the CUNY School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS) MA in Applied Theatre program have co-published an article in the online theatre and performance art journal

MA in Applied Theatre Hosts Racial Justice Conference

MA in Applied Theatre Program Hosts Two-Day Racial Justice Conference

December 12, 2019

The CUNY School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS) MA in Applied Theatre program hosted its fifth consecutive Ra

Miles the Doppelganger, played by Hayden Palmer, fights Agnes, played by Claire Schnatterbeck, in a Sheridan High School Drama Club rehearsal of “She Kills Monsters.” (Grace Cannon)

Courage and vulnerability: taking artistic risk in a small town

November 12, 2019

WyoFile

Grace Cannon holds a MA in Applied Theatre from CUNY SPS. In this article, Grace examines the relationship between courage and the risk of vulnerability in theatre, as well as the role that theatre educators play in today's environment.
A performance by the Applied Theatre program

The MA in Applied Theatre program at the AATE Conference

September 25, 2019

This past August, New York hosted the national conference of The American Alliance for Theatre & Education.