Admission to the Bachelor of Fine Arts
Michigan State University’s Department of Theatre offers BFA degrees in Acting, Design, Stage Management. On this page you will find information about how to audition/interview for the BFA in Acting, how to audition/interview for the Musical Theatre Immersion Program, and how to interview for the BFA in Design. For admission to the BFA in Stage Management, contact Tina Newhauser.
At the auditions and interviews, you will be considered for specific scholarships and entrance to the BFA program. In order to receive a scholarship you must have been accepted to MSU by the date outlined on your scholarship notification.
BFA Acting Audition Procedures
Auditions for the 2019-2020 academic year will be held on January 26 and February 2, 2019. These auditions are open to incoming freshmen, transfer students, and current MSU students.
Your audition gives us the opportunity to evaluate your work and to determine if you would be compatible with our program. Michigan State University’s Department of Theatre looks for students that display potential for a professional acting career in theatre, film, television, and other media. We seek students that are enterprising, self-driven, innovative, imaginative, talented, and prepared to shape the future of this profession. Unlike traditional acting programs, our “School of Choice” approach creates graduates that possess a versatile skill set with multiple pathways to achievement and fulfillment.
Admission to the BFA Acting program is competitive and by audition only. Students not selected please apply as early as possible to Michigan State University.
- Prepare two contrasting memorized monologues (no longer than 3 minutes combined total). Both must be from a contemporary (post-1960) play. “Contrasting” can mean two distinct styles, such as comedic and dramatic, or two distinct types of characters. We recommend selecting monologues that aren’t too far removed from your age, type, and experience.
- Bring a photo and résumé that highlights any related training you may have had, performance experience, leadership or volunteer experience, and special skills.
- In addition to the monologues, there will also be an informal interview and a 45-minute group workshop. Please dress to move and bring a change of clothes for your monologues.
What to Expect
This is also your opportunity to audition us. Since you’ll be here, we invite you to tour our facilities, meet our faculty, chat with current students, and get all your questions answered. When you click the link to sign up, you’ll see a more detailed schedule of events. Please leave time to explore all that we have to offer.
Please contact Deric McNish with questions.
We strongly encourage in-person auditions. In the event that you have an immovable conflict or that you live more than 200 miles from campus, we will accept a video audition. A video audition will include a slate (introduction with name and location), and two monologues (same requirements as above). E-mail Deric McNish your audition, along with a photo, resume, and answers to the following question: Why do you want a BFA in Acting and why have you chosen this particular program? This is due no later than February 1, 2020.
BFA Theatre Design Application Procedures
The Department of Theatre design faculty are looking for students who display potential in Theatrical Design.
Zoom Video Auditions for the 2021-2022 academic year will be held on February 6, 2021. These auditions are open to incoming freshmen, transfer students, and current MSU students.
Applicants for the BFA in Theatre Design will present a portfolio in an interview session. If you have previous theatre design experience, you will want to include sample designs from these projects – sketches, drafting, renderings, light plot/hook-up, and photos of finished scenery, costumes, lighting, makeup, construction, props or scene painting.
Your portfolio may include examples of freehand drawing, sketches of still life objects, the human figure, animals, portraiture, painting, sculpture, architecture, print, poster and sign design, as well as computer graphic work. Class projects and photos of production work are also encouraged for submission.
Feel free to choose a format or a mix of formats that is convenient for you – digital files, photos, sketchbooks, scrapbooks, color photocopies, or slides.
Musical Theatre Immersion Program Audition 2021
For those interested in the Musical Theatre Immersion program, auditions will be held this year on January 30 and February 6, 2021 via ZOOM. Any full-time undergraduate student is eligible to audition for the program.
You may sign up for an audition by using this link as well as upload your headshot and resume: https://forms.gle/og1qvjwUD2szfpcd8
The audition will consist of:
- Please prepare TWO contrasting, 32-bar cuts from musicals that best show off your voice and range.
- Please prepare a monologue no longer than one minute.
- You must have a track or recording to accompany you on your end of the zoom call.
The auditions for musical theatre actors will be held during the same time as the BFA Acting Auditions each year, either before or after your audition slot. Please make sure you do not double book yourself with your BFA audition slot if you are auditioning
For more information about the program and its curricular requirements, visit: Musical Theatre Immersion Program
Program Director for the BFA in Acting: Deric McNish
Program Director for the BFA in Design: Shannon Schweitzer
Program Director for the Musical Theatre Immersion Program: Brad Willcuts
Program Director for the BFA in Stage Management: Tina Newhauser
Program Director for the BA in Theatre: Ann Folino White