For over 50 years, YSU’s University Theatre has offered degrees and high-quality productions that critically and creatively serve Youngstown State University, Cliffe College, and the region. Our world-class faculty and staff provide outstanding training for the theatre professionals of tomorrow. Through coursework and hands-on experiences on stage and behind the scenes, our students explore all aspects of the theatre arts. Students receive individualized attention and one-on-one mentoring from our faculty and staff, and our program prepares them with the skills needed for a variety of careers in the theatre arts and beyond. Each year, they're engaged in numerous fully produced mainstage Theatre and Musical Theatre productions, cabarets, the Festival of New Works, conferences, masterclasses with internationally acclaimed guest directors and actors, and more.

University Theatre offers the professional Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) degree, where students may pursue either Theatre or a Musical Theatre concentration, and the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in Theatre Studies as well as a Film/Video concentration. The department also supports minors in dance, film studies, musical theatre, puppetry, and theatre.

Our alumni may be seen regionally, nationally, and internationally across the theatre and entertainment industries. Our graduates are found on stage and screen—from Tony Award-winning Hadestown to Days of Our Lives—and receiving nominations and awards from The Tony's to The GRAMMYS®. Our dynamic programs also empower our alumni to become successful directors, designers, choreographers, and more at the national level, including the Great Lakes Theatre Festival and similar festivals. University Theatre degrees and programs will prepare you for success in the theatre industries no matter the path you choose.

University Theatre Contact Information

To learn more about our degree programs, scholarships, performances, faculty, and students, contact the University Theatre Office at 330.941.3810. To schedule a personalized campus visit, contact the Cliffe College of Creative Arts Program Coordinator of Admissions and Recruitment at 330.941.2346 or We would love to learn about your interests, talk with you about our programs, and become an important part of your future. 

Dr. Joseph Carucci, Director

Degrees and Minors


  • Theatre (B.F.A.)
    • Music Theatre (B.F.A.)
  • Theatre Studies (B.A.)
    • Film/Video Track (B.A.)


  • Minor in Dance
  • Minor in Film Studies
  • Minor in Musical Theatre
  • Minor in Puppetry for Non-Theatre Majors
  • Minor in Puppetry for Theatre Majors
  • Minor in Theatre

Learning Outcomes

The student learning outcomes for the major in theatre are as follows:

  • Public Performances – Students demonstrate competence in applying discipline-specific skills to the creation of theatrical performance.
  • Knowledge of History and Cultural DimensionsStudents demonstrate knowledge of the history and cultural influences of and upon the institution of theatre throughout the ages and analyze and critique the social significance and cultural resonances of theatrical endeavor as reflected in theatre history and dramatic literature.
  • Informed Assessments of QualityStudents demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate the multi-faceted nature of the production process and demonstrate comprehension of the variety of artistry and skills that contribute to a finished theatrical production.
  • Critical ThinkingStudents demonstrate problem-solving skills in the creation of artistic work by identifying & articulating goals and assessing and applying necessary processes to achieve said goals.
  • Collaboration – Students implement communication skills, creativity, and organizational skills required to develop effective teamwork and achieve a unified goal. Individual accountability to the team is fostered as part of the collaborative effort. Students will assimilate multiple views to deepen knowledge and promote critical thinking.

In addition to the above outcomes, learning outcomes in musical theatre also include:

  • Musical Knowledge – Students demonstrate an understanding of music theory, the keyboard, and the ability to read music.
  • Vocal Competence – Students demonstrate an ability to sing and act a musical selection in the musical theatre style.
  • Movement – Students demonstrate ability in the dance disciplines of ballet, tap, and jazz.

Academic Advising

The Cliffe College Academic Advising Office provides optimum assistance to help our students navigate through their undergraduate years and prepare them for academic and future career endeavors! Our Advisors can provide advice about staying on track with your degree program, combining your major with a supporting minor, finding resources to enhance your coursework with study abroad or other student enrichment experiences, and more. Our goal is to see you succeed! The Academic Advisor for Theatre students may be reached at 330-941-3623 or


University Theatre is located in Bliss Hall, home of the Cliffe College of Creative Arts and the performing arts complex that houses University Theatre. Whether rehearsing, building scenes, studying, designing and making costumes, or performing, our facilities augment our students' educational and artistic endeavors. University Theatre students utilize two Theaters, design studios, scene and costume shops, makeup and dressing rooms, and other spaces where they work and perform. They also give productions in a variety of exquisite and historic spaces in the region, ranging from intimate settings to venues for large-scale productions, including The Butler Institute of American Art and Butler North, the B & O Station, and DeYor Performing Arts Center.

As a theater student, you'll be able to take full advantage of our state-of-the-art production and performance facilities. Along with spacious studios, your studies will be further enhanced by:

  • Ford Theater, a 390-seat proscenium stage where major University Theatre productions are presented; the theater also allows for dance recitals and ensembles
  • Spotlight Arena Theater, a 135-seat flexible capacity arena theater that accommodates small-scale productions and also serves as an experimental space for student-directed plays and various workshops and classroom activities
  • Lab theater and rehearsal spaces
  • Theater design studio
  • Film screening room
  • Television production studio (affiliated with PBS channels 45/49 in Northeastern Ohio)
  • Scene and costume shops
  • Makeup and dressing rooms
  • Greenroom
  • Box Office
  • Front-of-house facilities
  • Spacious dance studio 

Professional Societies

Alpha Psi Omega

The Theatre Program is a member of Alpha Psi Omega, the National Honorary Dramatics Fraternity. Students may become members of the local chapter by:

  • achieving the prescribed cumulative grade average
  • earning a prescribed number of points through participation in dramatic activities

Membership requires sophomore standing.

General Procedures and Policies

Students are responsible for knowing about degree requirements and university and Theatre area policies and procedures. This information may be found through the Theatre office, from the Theatre Academic Advisor, or from several sections of this Catalog, including the Academic Policies, Rights, and Responsibilities section.