Executive Education

Top 10 Colleges for Performing Arts in America for 2021

University Students

A lot of young people seek to express their creativity through arts. Some are really talented in acting and some others in dancing. All these young people are very important to find the right college to develop their skills through the appropriate guidance. The colleges presented below are among the best ones for performing arts.

  1. Carnegie Mellon University: School of Drama includes five undergraduate degree programs or five graduate-level degree programs. Every student is treated with personal attention from the faculty. Classes are small so students have the ability to better collaborate with each other.  At the same time, the professors at the School of Music are world-class teachers and performers. Students can choose a more traditional, conservatory-style education or they can create their own educational path, integrating technology with performance, theory, history and composition. The university is located in Pittsburgh. School of Drama and School of Music are divisions of Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Fine Arts. Of course, there are some more options for those interested studying arts. The Carnegie Mellon School of Music was founded in 1912.
  2. Yale University: In 1924 Yale University founded a Department of Drama in the School of Fine Arts. The first chair of the department was George Pierce Baker, the foremost teacher of playwriting in America. The first Master of Fine Arts in Drama was conferred in 1931. In 1955 the department was organized as a separate professional school, Yale School of Drama, offering the degrees of Master of Fine Arts, Doctor of Fine Arts, and Certificate in Drama. Furthermore, in 1966, under the leadership of Dean Robert Brustein, Yale Repertory Theatre was founded as part of Yale School of Drama. The acting department prepares students for a career as professional actors by training them in depth in classroom with extensive production experience.
  3. University of North Carolina School of the Arts: It was founded in 1963 as the North Carolina School of the Arts. It was the first public arts conservatory in the United States. It includes the School of Dance, the School of Design & Production, the School of Drama, the School of Filmmaking, and the School of Music. Vittorio Giannini was the School’s founder and first President. His vision of arts education continues to influence the whole operation of the school till today. The University of North Carolina School of Arts grants high school, undergraduate, and graduate degrees.
  4. Northwestern University: Art, Theory, Practice at Northwestern University is one of the nation’s most competitive MFA programs. Only five candidates are accepted each year and ten graduate students are fully supported during their tenure with full tuition waivers, health care coverage, and yearly stipends ranging from $24,000 to $32,000. The Northwestern University is at Evanston.
  5. Purchase College – State University of New York: Purchase College offers, among others a Bachelor of Arts degree, a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, a Bachelor of Music degree, a Master of Arts degree, a Master of Fine Arts degree, and a Master of Music degree. Prestigious faculty prepares students for entry into their fields of study through rigorous and comprehensive studio practice, fortified by theoretical, conceptual, and historical teaching.
  6. American Musical & Dramatic Academy: It is located in New York and in Los Angeles. The programs that are offered include acting, musical theatre, dance and performing arts. The American Musical and Dramatic Academy was founded in 1964 by Philip Burton. Soon after its operation gained support from members of the Broadway theatre such as Sammy Davis Jr., Dina Merrill and Carol Channing.
  7. University of Southern California: Dramatic Arts, Dance and Music are among its academic units. The USC School of Dramatic Arts is considered as a leader in dramatic arts education.  Through programs of the highest caliber students are prepared for leadership in every facet of dramatic arts and of course they are free to explore their artistic passions. The graduate programs in Acting and Dramatic Writing are of a three-year duration and the master’s in Applied Theatre Arts is one of only a few offered in the United States.
  8. New York University: It offers Drama and Dance programs. At Tisch Drama students are exposed to different approaches of acting, music theatre, production, design, theatrical management, and directing. By exploring various creative techniques instead of a prescribed, regimented program, students develop an individual way of working that suits them best. At the same time the Bachelor’s (BFA) and Dual Degree Master’s (MFA/MA) programs at the Tisch Department of Dance emphasize the techniques of ballet and contemporary dance, with equal emphasis on performance and choreography.
  9. Columbia University: Theatrical studies are included in the program of School of Arts of Columbia University. The Theatre MFA programs in Acting, Directing, Playwriting, Dramaturgy, Stage Management, and Theatre Management & Producing are addressed to students who have the talent, vision, and commitment to become exceptional artists. At the School of the Arts, students interact with the leading creators, practitioners, producers, and analysts of today’s theatre, acquiring rigorous training. The programs have a three year duration.
  10. Stanford University: The undergraduate program in theatre and performance studies gives students a strong grasp of historical, cultural, and practical contexts in which live performance develops. This Department of Stanford University pursues areas of interest that may include acting, directing, writing, dance, devised theater, design, stage management, performance theory, and cultural studies. During the senior year students complete a senior project as part of fulfilling the 60 units required for the major. The mission of the graduate program in Theater and Performance Studies is to educate students who work on the leading edge of both scholarly and performance practice. The Ph.D. program includes the study of critical theory, dramatic literature, performance theory, theater history, and performance making.
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Maria Gourtsilidou
Maria Gourtsilidou is Senior Editor of Research and Data Analytics at the CEOWORLD magazine. She is responsible for driving thought leadership, using data analytics to showcase the company’s products and services, and fostering knowledge sharing between CEOWORLD magazine and client organizations. She studied Public Administration (Economics Of The Public Sector) in Greece and holds a Bachelor’s in Public Administration from the Panteion University of Political & Social Studies. Follow Maria Gourtsilidou on Twitter. Write at maria-gourtsilidou@ceoworld.biz.