Hamline actors in "Heathers"

Theatre and Dance ❘ Performance, Production, and Community Major (BA)

The performing arts are a fundamental form of human expression. With Hamline's performance, production, and community major, your studies will integrate aesthetic, humanistic, and social scientific perspectives.

What makes Hamline’s major, courses, and activities different than other theatre majors is that they are grounded in the belief in—and commitment to—the ability of performance to build, serve, and engage community (on campus and beyond).

At Hamline, courses in the performance, production, and community are designed to serve all Hamline students, by providing: 

  • The production, performance, and community major for those interested in advanced study
  • Courses that are open to all students who wish to explore theatre or dance as an interest area
  • Co-curricular activities in our annual production season of plays, musicals, and the Hamline Dance Ensemble

Grounded in theatre and dance training and practice, the program allows you to create across different areas of study. Your artistry and creative and critical problem-solving skills will expand through strategic collaborations across dance, theatre, and music disciplines, with additional opportunities to connect with other students in creative writing, digital storytelling, as well as digital and studio art.

Theatre at Hamline, performers on stage

Minneapolis and Saint Paul—a hub for the performing arts

The Twin Cities are home to one of the strongest regional theatre and dance communities in the nation, and Hamline is at the center of it. Guest artists feature in our classes and performances each season, and working professionals and teaching artists will enrich many of your courses with presentations and special workshops.


Minneapolis-Saint Paul
Eden Fahy, theatre arts at Hamline University, MN

What drew me to Hamline is that it's a smaller school. I've had one-on-one time with my professors and a lot of opportunities that I don't think I would have had at bigger schools. I've been able to work so closely with my professors and with the design team for shows.

Eden Fahy '25, theatre arts; of Flagstaff, Arizona

Engaged learning and student research opportunities

At Hamline, students participate in research and community engagement with faculty as early as their first year, something usually reserved for graduate students at other institutions. You'll design and conduct your own research or performance project based on your individual interests and goals.


a play at Hamline

The list of possible engagement projects is as varied as our students. For example, picture yourself:

  • Researching the barriers and prejudices the disabled community have confronted when attending and/or participating in theatrical productions, and exploring efforts by artists and producers to create a more inclusive theatre experience
  • Examining how movements for social change have invented communication methods that integrate journalism and performance to engage contemporary audiences
  • Filming, editing, and designing visual and auditory effects for an experimental dance video
  • Compiling ethnographies on body image and cultural beauty standards to create a performance exploring bodily liberation from oppressive regimes of influence
  • Interrogating the intersection between video games and performance theory
  • Researching the intersections between and gender and queer theories and developing a company-created work of original theatre
  • Conducting dramaturgical analysis and directing a theatre production in our program's mainstage performance season

During your research process, you’ll collaborate with professionals at major institutions, publish your research in academic journals, and present your work at local, regional, and national venues.

Theatre and dance activities


Hamline University Theatre

Hamline theater


Hamline University Theatre presents a variety of works every year, providing you with opportunities for mainstage and studio performance, as well as production work.

Check out the upcoming season and get info about auditions.

Hamline Dance Ensemble

Dance at Hamline


Participate in advance performance work and choreographic opportunities. Student-directed, choreographed, devised, and designed performances are a regular feature of the department. 

Internships for performance, production, and community majors

We make sure you leave Hamline with theatre work experience on your resume, and the opportunities are boundless. Whether you want to explore set design, directing, education, acting, dance, or more, we have internship opportunities for you.

Examples of past student internships include:

  • Mixed Blood Theatre, community outreach intern
  • Penumbra Theatre, art for social change intern
  • Yellow Tree Theatre, marketing and box office assistant
  • Minnesota Fringe Festival, front of house coordinator
  • Children’s Theatre Company, educational apprentice
Hamline University student Nolan Sherburne, Theatre Arts major

I had the opportunity to do lighting design in my first year. It was a dream come true to be thrown into it. It's great that there are faculty at Hamline who give those opportunities, especially to first years because it sets the pace for your college years.

Nolan Sherburne '23, theatre arts, digital media arts; master control specialist at the American Public Media Group in Saint Paul, MN

Explore career paths

Our innovative courses and one-on-one mentoring by faculty will give you the tools to succeed in a variety of jobs, such as:

  • Scenic and lighting designer
  • K-12 educator
  • Performer
  • Event planning and management
  • Stage director
  • Museum designer
  • Filmmaker and producer
  • Production stage manager
  • Librarian
  • Clergy
  • Box office coordinator
  • Technical director

You can put your degree to work in any number of fields, including:

  • Entertainment
  • Service industry
  • K-12 and higher education
  • Law
  • Finance and banking
  • Business administration


An audience looking at a theatre stage with a red curtain closed

Take your studies further with graduate school

Our scholars have gone on to graduate schools across the country in the pursuit of further education. Examples of programs and schools include:

  • MFA in integrated media, University of Texas at Austin
  • MFA in directing, University of Washington
  • MFA in media design, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
  • MFA in costume design, University of Missouri at Kansas City
  • MFA in technical direction, California Institute for the Arts
  • MFA in costume design, Ohio State University
  • MFA in design and technology, University of Minnesota
Ian Olson, Performance, Production, and Community Major (Theatre)

The work study program in the theatre and dance department was the best learning experience of my college career. I learned how to problem solve and collaborate in all kinds of settings, and I gained a confidence that's helped me succeed in my career.

Ian Olson '21, theatre arts and digital media arts; videographer at New American Funding

Performance, production, and community events

Apr 26
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Apr 27
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Apr 28
1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Performance, production, and community news

Jeff Turner
January 29 2024 / Inside Hamline News

Turner Publishes Essay

Jeff Turner, professor in Hamline's performance, production, and community program , published the essay "Wanton Boys: Queering Childhood and Youth in...

Take your first step today.

Come see our Performance, Production, and Community program in person, or get your questions answered virtually by one of our admissions counselors.