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Directing and Playwriting

Theatre and Film


Ten actors standing and sitting in stark light

Concord Floral - Photo Credit: Chris Coyne Director: Christopher Brauer Set Designer: Rebecca Enns Costume Designer: Joseph Abetria Lighting Designer: Sean E. McMullen

DIRECTING

(click HERE or scroll down for Playwriting)

The best thing about studying directing in a liberal arts institution like the University of Winnipeg is that, to be an excellent director, you must have an extensive knowledge of social and artistic history, strong research skills, and a burning curiosity to explore art forms beyond the theatre.  The breadth of classes at the University of Winnipeg provides student directors with the range of tools and knowledge required to excel in this field.

We find that the students who make the best directors aren’t solely focused on theatre as an art form.  They are often also musicians or dancers or visual artists.  Or they have a passion for film.  And they are avid readers – and writers – of both fiction and non-fiction.  It is in the intersection of these various arts that the directors find their individual voice.

Given the rigours demanded of a director, we don’t offer a general BA in this area.  It is our belief that the full 4-years of a BA Honours is required to provide emerging directors with the skill and knowledge to succeed in this challenging field.

Senior directing students also have an opportunity to take advanced courses in devised theatre, and can get credit for assistant directing our own shows or those with our community partners.

Program of Study for BA Honours

Compulsory: 

           THFM-1001(6) Introduction to Theatre:  Performance

           or THFM-1002(6) Introduction to Theatre:  General

           or THFM-1003(6) Introduction to Theatre:  Indigenous Performance

ANY TWO of:

           THFM-2101(6) Acting Theory and Practice

           THFM-2201(3) Principles of Design

           THFM-3802(3) Stage Management   

           THFM-4331(6) Directing I

6 additional credit hours at the 4000-level in directing, dramaturgy, or special studies

Required but not in any particular order or year: 

THFM/ENGL-2703(3)  Play Analysis

A minimum of 3 credit hours from the Dramatic Studies Group

THFM-4441(3) Theatre Aesthetics OR a minimum of 3 credit hours in any Honours-level course in dramaturgy

A minimum of 9 or 12 additional credit hours in Theatre at the 3000 level (depending on the choice of required course from the Dramatic Studies Group)

A minimum of 3 additional credit hours in Theatre at the 4000 level

Recommended (in no particular order of preference): 

             THFM-2401/HIST-2190(3) Theatre History I:  Aeschylus to Shakespeare

             THFM-2402(3) Theatre History II: Molière to Irving

             THFM-2602(3) Lighting

             THFM-2801(6) Production l

             THFM-3401/HIST-3190(3) Theatre History III:  Ibsen to the Present

             THFM-3402(3) Canadian Drama

             THFM-4131(8) Acting III: Honours

             THFM-4802(3) Honours Stage Management – Theory

             THFM-4803(3) Honours Stage Management – Practice

             A first-year English course

 Puck and Oberon conspiring in a library

A Midsummer Night's Dream - Photo Credit: Tim Babcock   Director: Christopher Brauer   Set & Costume Design: Adam Parboosingh   Lighting Design: Rebecca Enns

 

PLAYWRITING

Students specializing in Playwriting enjoy small classes and individual instruction in a number of areas including one-act plays, full-length plays, and screenwriting. Our instructors are all experienced playwrights and screenwriters. Students learn how to construct a play from the initial idea to the final draft, and work collaboratively with their classmates to develop an exciting story complete with all the required elements. Workshopping opportunities are available for senior students. As a result of our close relationship with the university's English Department, students can augment their drama courses with creative writing courses taught by top-notch English professors.

In addition to Playwriting I, Playwriting II: General, and Playwriting II: Honours, we teach an Intro and an Advanced course in Screenwriting and another called Script and Screen, which examines existing screenplays to determine what works and what doesn't. As well, our senior students have an opportunity to work on specialized projects on a one-to-one basis with a Professor who is an experienced playwright.

A number of award-winning playwrights have come through this program including Brian Drader (Artistic Director of the Manitoba Association of Playwrights and long-time coordinator of playwriting at the National Theatre School) and Vern Thiessen (Artistic Director of Workshop West Playwrights’ Theatre and Governor General’s award Winner).

Program of Study for the General BA

Compulsory sequence:

ONE OF:

        THFM-1001(6) Introduction to Theatre: Performance

        or THFM-1002(6) Introduction to Theatre: General

        or THFM-1003(6) Introduction to Theatre: Indigenous Performance

AND:

THFM-2701(6) Playwriting I

THFM-3701(6) Playwriting II: General

Required but not in any particular order or year:

THFM/ENGL-2703(3) Play Analysis

AND a minimum of 3 credit hours from the Dramatic Studies Group

Recommended:

    A first-year English course

Program of Study for the BA Honours

Compulsory:

ONE OF:

        THFM-1001(6) Introduction to Theatre: Performance

        or THFM-1002(6) Introduction to Theatre: General

        or THFM-1003(6) Introduction to Theatre: Indigenous Performance

AND:

THFM-2701(6) Playwriting I

THFM-4041(6) Special Studies in Theatre in Playwriting

Required but not in any particular order or year: 

THFM/ENGL-2703(3)  Play Analysis

A minimum of 3 credit hours from the Dramatic Studies Group

THFM-4441(3) Theatre Aesthetics OR a minimum of 3 credit hours in any Honours-level course in dramaturgy

A minimum of 9 or 12 additional credit hours in Theatre at the 3000 level (depending on the choice of required course from the Dramatic Studies Group)

A minimum of 9 additional credit hours in Theatre at the 4000 level

Recommended (in no particular order of preference):

               THFM-2401/HIST-2190(3) Theatre History I:  Aeschylus to Shakespeare

               THFM-2402(3) Theatre History II:  Molière to Irving

               THFM-2610(3) Script and Screen

               THFM-2611(3) Introduction to Screenwriting

               THFM-3401(3)/HIST-3190(3) Theatre History III: Ibsen to the Present

               THFM-3402(3) Canadian Drama

               A first-year English course

               Any single or combination of dramatic literature and/or creative writing courses offered through another Humanities department.

Students in a 3-Year General BA program can take a maximum of 48 credit hours in their major subject.

Students in an a BA Honours program can take a maximum of 78 credit hours in their major subject.

(In both cases, students must take a minimum of 42 hours outside their major subject.)

Consult the Calendar or WebAdvisor for more detailed course descriptions and regulations.  We strongly recommend that you arrange an appointment with the Department's Student Advisor early on to discuss your program (204-786-9955).