Studying Theatre at North Park
North Park University’s Theatre program is developed around a storefront model of creating productions for intimate or unique settings. Our holistic approach to theatre studies gives students the opportunity to learn the full spectrum of practical skills that production members need to be successful, while collaborations with prestigious theatre companies throughout Chicago prepare students for real-world careers in theatre and performance.
Storefront Theatre Model
With over 200 producing theatre companies, Chicago is world renowned for its contribution to the storefront movement. Those who work in storefront theatres in Chicago recognize that in order to produce successful shows, everyone must perform multiple jobs. For example, someone who designs lights might also write grants. Or someone who acts may also be responsible for set construction. This is called cross training in the business world—in the Chicago theatre scene, this is called smart. Read more in New York Times article, “How Chicago is Changing Theater, One Storefront at a Time.”
Theatre students take the first step into their careers by completing an internship at a professional theatre company. Chicago provides outstanding internship opportunities at theatres such as The Goodman, MPAACT, Steppenwolf, Lookingglass, Chicago Shakespeare, The Hypocrites, The Neo-Futurists, Steep, The Ruffians, and Barrel of Monkeys.
Where Our Alumni Work
North Park’s theatre alumni are active in both stage and film productions all over the country, including at Chicago’s Barrel of Monkeys and Akvavit Theatre, and at Basher Films/Prehistoric Digital in Los Angeles.
North Park’s Theatre program is made up of dedicated students who participate both for credit and for the joy of putting on a show. With faculty guidance, the program stages at least two shows each year.