The Theater Department of St. Olaf College is an accredited institutional member of National Association of Schools of Theatre. We are also a member of United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT), Communication and Theater Association of Minnesota (CTAM), and The Playwrights’ Center.

The St. Olaf Department of Theater produces a season of plays where the focus is the liberal arts curriculum rather than a typical theater company’s season of plays. All classes focus on the making of dramatic art. Classes in history and theory as well as those in acting, directing, and design, approach the problems and difficulties of making production their central issue.

The activities and skills necessary for learning about and making theater are well suited to learning about and contributing to lives of worth and service. The basic theater activity is making things: play scripts, sets, costumes, characters, and the complete works of which these are a part. The theater skills are leading, following, reading, writing, talking, drawing, building, acting, performing, and making arrangements. We place these skills in the service of our conception of theater as a way of knowing. Our courses, along with the rest of the college curriculum, develop an appreciation of the need for moral choice, an imagination that constructs and examines alternatives, and an understanding of creativity as a reality in the world and an agency of community and change. We think of our program as a kind of laboratory for a serious and productive life.