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Get a feel for the exciting variety of courses taught at Marlboro.

This is a list of courses that faculty felt was representational of the courses offered. It is not a complete list of courses, some courses are offered yearly, while others are infrequent. A course may be inspired by events or strong interests and taught only once.

Most advanced work is in the form of tutorials on specific subjects, a collaboration between one faculty member and one student or a handful of students.


Acting I
(3.00 Credits — Introductory)

Fall 2018

This is a practical theatre course that explores various skills and techniques to assist in developing an understanding of the processes of acting. Analysis, interpretation, collaboration, improvisation, relaxation, and critique all contribute to the composite demands required in performance. The course will consist of various exercises, monologue work, and attendance at performance events.

Acting II
(3.00 Credits — Intermediate)

Spring 2017

Acting II is an intermediate course designed to continue the training and development of actors with previous class/performance experience. The goal of the class is to expand knowledge and skills gained in Acting I. Exercises and scene study work will culminate in a final scene project with partners. There is significant rehearsal time outside of class. Prerequisite: Acting I

Acting Seminar in Period Styles
(3.00 Credits — Intermediate)

Spring 2015

Robert Barton has noted, "We perceive style in terms of our expectations." From the expansiveness of Elizabethan and Jacobean plays to the taut control of Noel Coward's texts, this class will give us the opportunity to interrogate our own expectations as we explore the possibilities of theatrical performance within the context of period plays. The course will include fight scenes choreographed by Jodi Clark and require rehearsal time outside of the designated class period. Prerequisite: Acting 1 and permission of the instructor

Actor as Thinker
(4.00 Credits — Multi-Level)

Fall 2010

This course will examine ways that actors purposefully shape interpretation of scripted dramas through choices made about representation of character, modes of interaction in relationships, and implementation of actions that shape performance. We will begin with studies of a few model scripts and actor interpretations, using film/video to examine performance choices and techniques . We will conclude with students’ presentations of capstone character studies. Permission of the instructor required for registration.

Borders, Boundaries, & Crossings
(4.00 Credits — Advanced)

Spring 2014

Which presentation of myself

Would make you want to touch

What would make you cross the border

Savage/Love, Sam Shepard and Joseph Chaikin

This class will be an exploration of the ways in which we construct and perform narratives of identity. Employing perspectives from performance, gender, and global studies we will combine theory and practice through a series of workshop projects, including classes led by renowned Cuban-American performance artist Carmelita Tropicana who will be in residency at Marlboro this spring. The class will culminate in a workshop showing of student written performance pieces.  Prerequisite: intermediate performance class and permission of instructor

(4.00 Credits — Intermediate)

Fall 2011

An examination of principles of directing from script analysis to rehearsal and staging techniques with a focus on working with actors and crew.

(3.00 Credits — Introductory)

Fall 2012

This course functions as an introduction to the fundamentals of stage performance through ensemble and scene work, physical and vocal exercises, improvisation, theatre games, compositions, and monologues. Students are encouraged to explore acting through actions and objectives: focusing less on “performing” and more on “doing” as performers; trusting impulses; and allowing creativity, imagination, and spontaneity to develop them as actors.

Performing Normalcy
(4.00 Credits — Intermediate)

Fall 2018

Employing disability studies, performance studies, and history as the framework, this course is an interdisciplinary exploration of the ways in which cultural definitions of disability are articulated, represented, and subverted. The class will incorporate essays, plays, films, pop culture critiques, first person accounts, and historical documents to examine disability and the politics of representation. Representative films include: Freaks, The Shape of Water, The Station Agent, Monica and David, and The Greatest Showman.


Serve, Turn, Werq: A History of Drag Theatre and Performance
(4.00 Credits — Introductory)

Spring 2013

This course explores the history of cross-gendered, “drag” performance in theatre and popular entertainment from the ancient Greeks to the twenty-first century. Some topics of study include shamanism and pre-historic ritual, ancient comedy, the Shakespearean boy player, Jingju and Kabuki  traditions, breeches roles, music hall and vaudeville performance, boys and girls’ schools and drag as rite of passage, the Harlem Renaissance, the Queer community and the advent of camp, and “genderf*ck”  performance.

Prerequisite: None

Staging the Apocalypse
(4.00 Credits — Multi-Level)

Spring 2020
Global Perspective

In this course we will explore the ways in which contemporary playwrights portray a vision of the secular apocalyptic. As with Vaçlav Havel's assessment of Absurdism, apocalyptic plays can be read as "not scenes from life, but theatrical images of the basic modalities of humanity in a state of collapse."  We'll take an expansive perspective on the definition of "apocalyptic" and use as a frame works such as Margaret Atwood's novel Oryx and Crake, the poetry of Japanese women following the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in White Flash/Black Rain, and plays such as The Effect, Far Away, and Ditch. Prerequisite: None

The World on Stage and Screen
(4.00 Credits — Intermediate)

Fall 2011

A survey of how dramatic narratives are composed in cinematic models from around the globe. The focus of studies will involve close viewings of over 20 films from a variety of cultures — all are in foreign languages and must be viewed with sub-titles. Class exchanges will relate elements of the movies to theatrical traditions from various regions and specific countries. Seminar style discussion will require preparation of response perspectives. Assessment mechanisms will include mid-term and end of semester exams.


For Theater offerings, also see:



(a mostly random selection of Marlboro microdestinations)