M.F.A. Technical Direction Degree Requirements

The Master of Fine Arts in Technical Direction requires a minimum of 60 credit hours of approved courses to be completed with a 3.0 (“B”) grade point average or better. You have a great deal of flexibility in planning your program of study. However, there are a few required courses: intensive work in hand and computerized drafting, rigging, mechanics and automation, and materials and structural design; and a minimum of 12 credits in theatre history and dramatic literature, as well as the flexibility to add an interest in an area of design. A major portion of the program involves production positions as a technical director or assistant for Department of Theatre productions and, for exceptional students, Kansas City Repertory Theatre productions.

If you have demonstrated satisfactory progress in skills and professional discipline, you will be invited by the faculty to return for a second year. At the end of each year, you will present your portfolio to the Technology faculty. Portfolio evaluation will be based on how you develop and demonstrate your talent during your year in the classroom and through your production work. The faculty may look at your overall attitude and commitment to theatre discipline, your ability to meet deadlines, your preparation and research skills, your creative and conceptual ability, your ability to implement ideas and solve problems, your technical skills, and your collaborative ability to work with others and communicate ideas.

For some students, the focus of the third year of training is the residency, elected for six credits each of your final two semesters. Your residency assignment each semester will be made in the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, the Department of Theatre, or, in most cases, in an outside professional or academic environment. It is up to you to suggest the residency and work with the recommendations of your adviser and the principal graduate adviser.

You also may choose to remain on campus during the third year to continue elective courses, especially if you choose to supplement your degree with a design minor.

Toward the end of your final semester, you will present a final portfolio, which should highlight your work in the classroom and in production and reveal your growth and development from the time of your entry portfolio presentation.

First Semester

  • Professional Technical Production
  • Structural Design
  • Drafting for the Theatre
  • Theatre History or Text Analysis or Dramatic Lit
  • Technical Seminar

Second Semester

  • Advanced Technical Drafting – AutoCAD
  • Advanced Materials I – Woods
  • Theatre History or Text Analysis or Dramatic Lit
  • Technical Seminar
  • Master Class-Stage Mechanics & Automation or Master Class-Rigging

Third Semester

  • History of Design and Technology I
  • Structural Design
  • Advanced Materials II – Metals
  • Technical Seminar

Fourth Semester

  • Advanced Materials III – Plastics
  • History of Design & Technology II
  • Technical Seminar
  • Master Class-Stage Mechanics & Automation or Master Class-Rigging

Fifth Semester

  • Thea 697 or Elective

Sixth Semester

  • Thea 697 or Elective

Alternative Classes

  • Theatre Sound and Electronics
  • Property Construction
  • Stage Management I
  • Scene Painting
  • Professional Design (any area)
  • Theatre Collaboration
  • Special Effects for the Stage