If you are looking for a career in the arts, the training that you get here is second to none. We do three challenging musical productions a year, in addition to a Shakespeare festival. You get so much exposure to different works and techniques that by the time you are going to college, you have the confidence to audition and succeed.”
— Jack, Musical Theatre '18

In the Musical Theatre Department, students master storytelling in three different disciplines: voice, dance, and acting.

While many graduates of The Academy attend highly regarded BFA conservatory programs in musical theatre or acting, others choose to pursue their training in academic BA programs at liberal arts colleges.

A broad sampling of recent Musical Theatre graduates’ college placements include, but are not limited to, Northwestern, NYU, AMDA, Carnegie Mellon, the University of Minnesota/Guthrie, Emerson, Manhattan School of Music, Stanford, Princeton, Chapman, The New School, Boston Conservatory, Cal Arts, Indiana, Illinois Wesleyan, USC, Berklee School of Music, Roosevelt, Columbia Chicago, Webster, Penn State, and Shenandoah.

Musical Theatre students are taught by Chicago professionals, working out in the city on their own art as they impart wisdom to students based on their own professional training and experience. In addition to the department's permanent faculty, a rotating roster of guest artists means that the lighting designer or choreographer of the fall show is working with Academy students in between gigs at any of Chicago’s most reputable and innovative professional theaters.

For Musical Theatre students, performance is a key part of learning, and students have ample opportunity for it. The department produces four to five main stage shows per year, including two musical theatre productions and several plays as part of our annual Shakespeare Festival in collaboration with the Theatre Department.

Recent Musical Theatre productions have included Spring Awakening, A Little Night Music, Nine, A Chorus Line, Into the Woods, Head Over Heels, The Pirates of Penzance, Sunday in the Park with George, A Man of No Importance, Anything Goes, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, and Merrily We Roll Along. Our recent Shakespeare Festival titles have included The Merchant of Venice, Cymbeline, The Tempest, The Winter’s Tale, As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar, Twelfth Night, Hamlet, and Macbeth.


The department also produces works to be performed out in the community. Over the last two years, Musical Theatre seniors produced and toured the Theatre for Young Audiences musical Seussical, and Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream

More about the Musical Theatre Department


*Course titles reflect transcripts for the 2017-2018 freshman class.