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Theatre Arts

The department of theatre arts seeks to establish a Christ-centered, professional environment for artistic expression by developing the creative mind, body and spirit of each student in the disciplines of: performance, directing, design, technical theatre, production, theatre management, script writing, theatre history, and dramatic literature. By imparting knowledge and allowing hands-on participation, the department is about preparing students to impact our world for God’s glory.

Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts: Musical Theatre Concentration

Vanguard is one of the only Christian universities to offer a Musical Theatre Concentration. We offer top notch training in voice and acting with specialized courses in musical theatre auditioning and vocal technique. Along with our own Musical Theatre Dance and Private Dance courses we have a unique partnership with Orange Coast College (just around the corner in location) where we accept dance units into our program as the third component to a well-rounded program. We produce two musicals annually as part of our main-stage season, and have a student led Cabaret Ensemble who has the opportunity to perform for paid events at school and in the community.

Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts: Stage & Screen Acting/Directing Concentration

Vanguard offers Stage & Screen students a stand-out selection of performance-based courses. The program’s highlight is our three-tiered program in both Acting and Acting/Directing for the Camera, and our two-tiered directing program. Character Acting for Comedy focuses on acting styles for sitcoms while Playing Shakespeare focuses on the classical. Voice and Speech, Stage Combat, Industry Insiders, and many other comprehensive theatre courses contribute to a well-rounded theatre major. Performance opportunities abound through our main-stage productions, Senior Showcases, and student-directed scenes and one-acts. We enter productions every semester in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, and each year students participate in our regional festival as Irene Ryan Acting Award nominees.

Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts: Technical/Design Concentration

Personalized instruction and supervised hands-on design experiences that stretch from designs-on-paper to fully realized productions provide exciting challenges for the Design / Technical Concentration major, and develop skills that can provide be the basis for success in graduate studies or in the technical theatre workplace. All productions are entirely staffed by student technicians, including run crews, lighting crews, riggers, stage managers, sound operators and costume/makeup assistants. Many assistant designer position opportunities are also available throughout the production season.

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Theatre News

Lyceum Theater Renovations

The Lyceum Theater ribbon cutting ceremony is around the corner and the theater renovations are almost complete. 


National Association of Schools of Theatre

A Sampling of Theatre Arts Courses

THEA 339

Industry Insiders

Industry Insiders

Course focuses on the skill and materials necessary to find employment as a performer. Topics covered include auditioning, securing representation, finding a business manager, and getting the most useful headshots.

THEA 224

Musical Theatre Audition

Musical Theatre Audition

An in depth practicum class focusing on the preparation of audition pieces for musical theatre. Students will learn how to identify songs appropriate for their range and the production, and will study the techniques involved in song interpretation.


Stage Combat

Stage Combat

This course introduces basic sage techniques in unarmed combat including falls, rolls, chokes, punches, and kicks, advancing to broad sword combat using scenes from classical or contemporary works, and applying these techniques with special attention to safety.

Meet Our Faculty & Staff

Susan Berkompas

MFA – Department Chair, Professor of Theatre, Artistic Producing Director

Paul Eggington

Technical Director, Scenic Designer

Vanda Eggington

Instructor of Theatre

Lia Hansen

MFA – Associate Chair, Professor of Theatre, Costume Designer

Nicholas Lazaris

Theatre Manager, Marketing Manager

Ryan Miller

MFA – Professor of Theatre

David Pecoraro

MFA – Professor of Theatre, Production Manager

Bretlyn Schmitt- Lazaris

Instructor of Theatre, Resident Choreographer

Richard Soto

Instructor of Theatre

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