College of Visual & Performing Arts
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Periodic Student Reviews
Every student in the department is required to submit to a regular periodic review of their work. These reviews are designed to provide students and faculty a structured opportunity to assess and discuss the student’s academic progress within and without the department, their production work, general involvement, areas for needed improvement and future goals. Typically, which review the student goes through is determined by their area of emphasis (acting/directing or tech/design). However, the student is not limited to that specific area. If, for instance, a performer does a major project such as stage managing, they may wish to have their work on that production evaluated. The student and their advisor should discuss which review is appropriate for the student especially if deviating from their principal area of study. Students are always free to do both reviews but they must go through one or the other. Failure to do so can result in ineligibility for crew head, design assignments, and/or casting. As one of the main thrusts of the department is involvement, such censure could seriously impact the student’s standing in the program.
The tech/design reviews are held at the end of every semester. The acting/directing reviews are once every year at the end of the spring semester. Each area will post a list of students whom they are expecting to see in their respective reviews. If a student chooses to go through a review outside their expressed emphasis they must make this decision in consultation with their advisor and notify the faculty of their emphasis area of their intention to do so.
END YEAR ONE: Each first year student intent on continuing as a performance student is required to present one 1-2 minute monologue to the performance faculty. This monologue should be contemporary and suited to the student's age and type and may be dramatic or comedic.
The presentation will be followed with a discussion about the student's achievements in academics and the production program during their first year at Radford. This discussion will include the student's future aims in the department and their studies. First-year students who sing have the option to add an additional 16 bars of a song to their monologue. First year students are expected to bring a résumé with them.
END YEAR TWO: Students completing their second year will present an audition in the format of a combined audition-- this is to include a monologue and a contrasting song.* This audition must also conform to the time limit of the typical combined audition (90 seconds total time). The student is expected to bring a résumé and headshot appropriate for audition distribution to be reviewed by faculty.
A discussion will follow to respond to the student's audition, academic progress, areas in which improvement is needed, and goals for the future.
*Even if the faculty hasn’t recommended the student as a singer, non-singers should still prepare a simple song such as folk or children's music as these most closely resemble the music appearing in much classical dramatic literature. Both the song and the monologue should fit within the time limit.
END YEAR THREE: Third year students will present an audition package consisting of three monologues (approximately 2 minutes each) OR two monologues and one song (approximately 2 minutes each). The monologues should be contrasting pieces including one in classical verse (pre-1850) —whereas, a lot of classical auditions require Shakespeare, this selection need not be limited to that. The student will also submit a headshot and résumé for review.
The discussion to follow will include an update of academic performance, progress in previously identified areas of challenge, and production participation. In addition, the student's post-graduate academic and career objectives will be discussed. If pursuing graduate study, preparation for graduate school auditions and the application process will be discussed. Professional employment in the subsequent summer will be emphasized, calling attention to the student's eligibility for the undergraduate auditions at UPTA (Unified Professional Theatre Auditions) in February of their senior year and other audition opportunities.
END YEAR FOUR: This year requires the student to present an audition package of their four strongest audition pieces (monologues and/or songs). Fourth year students will turn in a list of their audition repertoire to the faculty along with their headshot and résumé. The repertoire should reflect a range of genres and consist of a minimum of seven selections. The student will choose the first two pieces and lead with those. Then the faculty will select two remaining pieces from the list for the student to present.
In the subsequent discussion the student's academics, personal progress as a performer, and their production activity, along with their audition and preparation for future goals will be reviewed.
Please note: At any point you are free to sing as part of your audition (not only in the second year where it is required). If you do so, these selections should fit your type, suit you vocally and be well-prepared /rehearsed with an accompanist. Please, if you intend to sing, or are required to, sign up on a day on which the accompanist is scheduled to be present at the reviews.
Students expressing a directing emphasis are to meet the following requirements for regular review:
END YEAR ONE: Same as End Year One Acting Review (see above).
END YEAR TWO: Perform one monologue and present orally a brief concept statement from a script that you have studied during your second year of coursework.
END YEAR THREE: Third year directing students will be expected to go through the tech/design review in the fall of that academic year. In the spring, the student prepares a 3-minute oral presentation summarizing their work on the directing application they submitted in March. The performance faculty will discuss the student’s work and advise them on their career and/or post-graduate education goals. Among other things, graduate school and internship options will be discussed. Third year students should bring a professional-looking headshot and résumé to their appointment.
END YEAR FOUR: The fourth year directing student will present a portfolio (either a hard copy, a digital copy or a professional website are acceptable formats) containing documentation of productions and conceptual work (for example: directing work, stage management, classroom projects, design work, and/or acting work). The student’s future plans will be discussed. Directing students also pursuing professional acting work will include monologue or song performances in their year-end review package.
Technical Theatre & Design Reviews
YEAR ONE: Each freshman intent on continuing as a tech/design student is required to submit to review by the tech/design faculty.
There will be discussion of the student's achievements in academics and the production program including work in the shops and crew assignments during their first year. This discussion will include the student's future aims in the department and their studies. Summer professional employment/internships will be encouraged with particular emphasis on attending Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC). The student will present a basic resume for review no later than the end of the spring semester of this first year. The faculty will advise the student to begin keeping photographic records of individual class and production technical drawings and design projects.
YEAR TWO: The student’s academics will be reviewed along with their involvement in the department. An updated resume will be presented along with photographs and other material collected toward the end of creating a portfolio suitable to present to prospective employers and/or graduate school recruiters. For designers, the prospects of a studio design will be considered. Continued involvement in SETC as well as participation in the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) will be reiterated.
YEAR THREE: In addition to the student’s academics and department participation the student’s professional experiences will be discussed. Suggestions of crew chief or design opportunities which will challenge the student and broaden their experiences will be made. If not before, discussion will take place of the student’s career or other post-graduate goals with an eye to preparing student for graduate school or professional interviews. In preparation for those the student’s portfolio and resume will be evaluated. Continued involvement in professional organizations will be underscored along with discussion of URTA/graduate school interviews.
YEAR FOUR: The senior student will present their portfolio and resume as though interviewing for a professional position. By the time of the fall review the student should have arranged graduate school and professional interviews in order to talk about these with the faculty and ready themselves for those interviews. Attendance of the URTA graduate school interviews as well as SETC and USITT opportunities for employment and portfolio review will be strongly encouraged.