The Theatre Studies Major

Theatre at Wellesley is vibrant, alive, and entirely responsive to student needs. Work in the theatre is open to all who are willing to commit time and energy to the various productions and projects. While the academic program is not huge, it is staffed by all theatre professionals who bring a wealth of theatrical experience and expertise to classes and projects. Our students have the opportunity to create their own career preparation plan with the guidance of department folks.

The extracurricular program is extremely active and presents six to eight student-directed shows, two departmental productions, and three professional productions, as well as a children's musical. We have won numerous awards and accolades in the last decade and continue to flourish even in times of economic downturn. Through the generosity of Ruth Nagel Jones class of '42, we are able to sustain a professional theatre wing of the program as well as augment our academic offerings with workshops, lectures, and excursions to productions in Boston, Providence, and New York.

We routinely present new work and have three working playwrights associated with Wellesley. In short, we are highly visible on campus, and our students feel a strong sense of ownership for the work they do. They are encouraged to explore all the hot-button issues of the day as well as to hone their theatrical expertise with innovation and fearlessness.
– Nora Hussey, Director of Theatre and Theatre Studies

Theatre Studies, an interdepartmental major, encompasses History, Acting, Acting-Shakespeare, Production, Playwriting, Independent Research; See major/minor requirements and course offerings.

Theatre Facilities

  • The newly renovated Diana Chapman Walsh Alumnae Hall: Barstow Stage: Full-scale concert auditorium that seats 1,300 people.
  • Ruth Nagel Jones Theatre: Black-box theatre for class performances/experimental projects
  • Shakespeare House: Home/theatre for the Shakespeare Society (but they don’t live there)
  • Hay Amphitheatre: Outdoor amphitheatre

Improv, Film & Theatre

  • Theatre: Current season.
  • Dead Serious: Wellesley's Improvisational Comedy Troupe Dead Serious has been bringing rip-roaring laughter to our audiences with its numerous performances each semester, all based on audience suggestions, and all promising to thoroughly entertain!
  • Film Society: A Wellesley College student organization for students who love movies!
  • Shakespeare SocietyThe oldest continuing society founded at Wellesley College in 1877, Shakespeare Society is a student organization dedicated to the study and performance of Shakespeare's plays. The Society produces one play every semester; these have included: As You Like It, Henry V, Taming of the Shrew, Othello, Twelfth Night, Julius Caesar, and Much Ado About Nothing. They also perform scenes in a fall Haunted House and a spring House of Fools. The society is also dedicated to planning lectures to discuss Shakespeare and related subjects with the Wellesley community.  
  • Upstage: A student theatre organization on campus that works with Wellesley College Theatre to sponsor student-directed performances and put students who are interested in theatre in contact with each other.