Theatre: Stage Management Major

BW's comprehensive theatre majors include studies in acting, auditioning, voice, script analysis, directing, stage management and more.

Theatre: Stage Management


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Undergraduate Admission

(440) 826-2222, (877) BW-APPLY,




Transforming a script into a dramatic expression of art that is well orchestrated in design, technical operation and supervision of talent and staff is at the core of theatre stage management.

At BW, you’ll gain insights and skills for effective theatre stage management. Real world-focused, the major is a comprehensive study that encompasses theoretical, practical, artistic and technical skill-building.

It integrates extensive hands-on learning with rigorous coursework. You’ll build skills in leadership, stage operations, scenic design, script analysis, lighting, acting and more.

Foundation courses in literature, history, performance, technical and collaborative studies help you develop analytical skills and insights into professional theatre.

Small class sizes, individual attention and faculty mentoring are at the core of the program. You’ll be encouraged to participate in professional apprenticeship opportunities nationally and abroad.

BW faculty are practicing professionals with contacts at Cleveland’s Great Lakes Theater, Cleveland Public Theatre, Beck Center for the Arts and Dobama Theatre, as well as Idaho Shakespeare Festival and Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival.

Through these opportunities, you’ll gain experience, earn Equity points, network and build an impressive resume.

With both proscenium and black box theatres, BW offers traditional and contemporary audience settings that provide a variety of learning environments, including theatre in-the-round, thrust staging and more.

  • Romeo and Juliet

    "Romeo and Juliet" - Fall 2014

    You will work on both large-scale period productions and small-scale contemporary pieces in BW's proscenium and black box theatres.

  • Stage management student

    Experiential Learning 

    Experiential learning is a hallmark of the stage management program. Theatre productions, internships and professional apprenticeships provide opportunities to gain experience, earn Equity points and network with professionals. 

  • "Enchanted April" at Baldwin Wallace University 2016

    "Enchanted April" - Spring 2016

    You will develop hands-on, practical experience in scenic painting, set and costume construction, lighting design and stage management with each production

  • "All Shook Up" at Baldwin Wallace University 2015

    "All Shook Up" - Fall 2015

    Faculty mentoring is at the core of the program. You will work alongside faculty members - all practicing professionals in the field - in all aspects of production, including directing, choreography, design and construction. 

  • Angels in America

    "Angels in America" - Fall 2015

    Baldwin Wallace's theatre and dance department produces two main stage productions and a series of one-acts each semester. Productions include musicals, operas, plays and a dance concert. BW is one of the few theatre producers to tackle both parts of Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer-Prize-winning American classic.

  • "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" at Baldwin Wallace 2015

    "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" - Spring 2015

    You will work alongside directors throughout the production process - from audition through closing performance - gaining real-world experience and building an impressive resume. 


  • Director
  • Critic
  • Theatre manager
  • Stage manager
  • Playwright
  • Casting or talent agent
  • Dramaturg


At BW, theatre majors can focus their studies in acting and directing, dance and movementdesign and technical and stage management. All programs include a solid foundation of courses designed to give students a comprehensive overview of theatre.


Heighten your understanding and appreciation of British theatre through a study abroad experience. The program is a three-week, credit-earning immersion course in British theatre that includes a nine-day trip to London. It is led by BW theatre faculty.

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Theatre Productions

Baldwin Wallace's theatre and dance department produces two main stage productions and a series of one-acts each semester. Productions include musicals, operas, plays and a dance concert.

Mainstage Series 2019-2020


Co-production with
BW Music Theatre

Book by Harvey Fierstein
Music and Lyrics by
Cyndi Lauper

Directed by Victoria Bussert
November 12-24

By Anton Chekov
Directed by Brennan Murphy
January 22-26

fyoo zh en 20
The Body Politic
of the Beautiful

Based on the research of
Dr. Ana de Freitas Boe
Directed by Sara Whale
February 12-15

By Stephen Dietz
Directed by Scott Plate
April 22-26

Studio Series 2019-2020

By Stephen Adly Guirgis
Directed by Nathan Motta
October 23-26

Directed by Keira McDonald
March 25-28

Lab Series 2019-2020

Marginalia: Interplay with Poe
Directed by Sara Whale
October 31-November 2

By Sarah Ruhl
Directed by Maria Maggard
November 14-16

Written & Directed by Shane Thatcher
January 23-25

Dance Works in Progress
Directed by Sara Whale
April 29

December 10
May 5

Staged Readings 2019-2020

By Wendy Wasserstein
Directed by Martin Friedman
September 20-21

2nd reading to be announced
Directed by Martin Friedman
March 20-21


Offered as a major and a minor, theatre offers four programs of study: acting and directing, dance and movement, design and technical and stage management. BW also offers a major in music theatre through its Conservatory of Music and a BFA in acting.

The theatre major provides a broad perspective of the literature, history and creative practices of the discipline. Courses prepare students to appreciate and participate in theatre at all levels of performance, production, direction, design and management.

You can study acting, directing, voice and movement, scenic and costume design, lighting, stage management, theatre history and more. You also can take special seminars in contemporary topics.

The theatre major prepares students to:

  • Develop an awareness and appreciation of theatre and/or dance as art forms and as a vital asset to society
  • Acquire competency in their chosen area of study
  • Acquire an understanding of the history of the theatre and/or dance including its literature and criticism
  • Develop responsible standards of criticism regarding the aesthetics of theatre and/or dance
  • Develop research skills/techniques applicable to scholarly and/or production needs
  • Develop an understanding of the collaborative nature of theatre and/or dance by active participation in production work within the program
Course Catalog

Course Descriptions

Course descriptions, requirements for the major and additional information can be found in the University Catalog.


Experiential learning bridges classroom study with real-world opportunities. You can enhance your studies through theatre productions, internships, co-curricular activities and student organizations.

Student Organizations

Theatre Arts and Performance

This organization supports student theatre artists and those interested in theatre on campus. It informs students of events and opportunities in theatre, maintains an open forum for student ideas and projects, and raises awareness of on- and off-campus theatrical events.

United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT)

The BW student chapter of USITT is committed to strengthening the skills of technical theatre students while carrying out the mission of the national organization. USITT serves to create vibrant dialogue among practitioners, educators and students.


The Department of Theatre and Dance is located in Kleist Center for Art & Drama. It houses two theatres: Mainstage Theatre and Black Box Theatre.

The Mainstage Theatre is a large 512-seat proscenium theatre. The stage has a 67-foot fly loft with a counterweight system. The stage opening is 44' by 24' with an extended 15-foot apron, ample wings and depth measuring 30 feet. This facility also boasts a new lighting system installed by ETC. With over 200 dimmers, lights are operated on an Emphasis board including a WYSIWYG program.

The Black Box Theatre is a smaller, flexible theatre with seating between 100-250. This unique studio space is intended to provide a variety of seating arrangements, including proscenium, three-quarter-thrust and in-the-round. The theatre has a balcony around three sides and a lighting grid 23 feet above the stage floor. This space also boasts a new Strand Century Lighting system with a 520 series light board.

Off-Campus Experiences

Baldwin Wallace's close proximity to Cleveland and its nationally ranked arts organizations offers outstanding learning and performance opportunities. BW students worked with many of them, including:


At Baldwin Wallace, you’ll experience personal and professional growth in a supportive community that challenges and inspires you to succeed.

Recent BW theatre stage management majors are finding their success in a variety of careers and studying in top graduate programs. 

Dayne SundmanDayne Sundman ’15 is stage management fellow at Arena Stage in Washington D.C. The practical insights and personal connections of his BW professors – all active in the professional theatre scene – helped Dayne launch a career with one of the country’s top regional theatres. He is from Cleveland Heights, Ohio. 

Dane UrbanDane Urban ’11 is resident assistant stage manager at Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts. He recently opened his sixth Broadway show. He has also worked as assistant stage manager and production assistant in a number of Off Broadway productions. Dane is from Medina, Ohio. 




(440) 826-2239,

Full-Time Faculty

Scott Plate
Chair, Department of Theatre and Dance
Directing Program Coordinator
Associate Professor
Acting, Directing, On Camera

Tesia Benson
Assistant Professor
Make-up, Costume Construction

Beth Burrier
Music Theatre Music Director & Area Coordinator, Music Theatre
Associate Professor of Music Theatre

Victoria Bussert
Director, Music Theatre Program
Professor of Theatre

Gregory Daniels
Coordinator, Dance Program
Associate Professor of Dance
Jazz, Tap

Anjanette Hall
BFA in Acting Program Coordinator
Assistant Professor

Les Hunter
Associate Professor
Playwriting, Script Analysis, Screenwriting

Keira Lea McDonald
Associate Profesor

Brennan Murphy
BFA in Acting Program Coordinator
Associate Professor
Acting, Voice

Annika Sheaff
Assistant Professor
Ballet, Modern Dance

David Allen Stoughton
Assistant Professor

Sara Whale
Assistant Professor
Ballet, Modern, Improv, Choreography

Charlotte Yetman
Costume Design Program Coordinator

Adjunct Faculty

Laura Welsh Berg

Melanie Boeman
Costume Shop Manager

Pamela Decker
Theatre History, Dramaturgy, Script Analysis

Martin Friedman
Script Analysis, Intro to Theatre

Dylan Fujimura
Technical Director

Shannon B. Fujimura
B.F.A., Kent State University

Fred Gloor
Improvisation, Intro to Theatre

Heidi Glynias

Tracy Grady
Singing for Actors, Voice

Todd Krispinsky
Theatre Management

Christine McBurney

Lisa Ortenzi
Creative Dramatics

Corrie Purdum
Stage Management 

Pandora Robertson
Movement, Devised Theatre

Kelly Smith

Bob Taylor
Theatre Seminar in London

Dusten Welch
Resident Fight Director, Stage Combat


Yolanda Kennedy
Office Manager

Josh Padgett
Assistant Technical Director