College Arts Spotlight: August 2014

Featured performing and visual arts programs of the month

As summer winds down, before the new school year heats up, consider these top college arts programs. Boston University offers excellent conservatory-style theater training within a larger liberal arts program, and The Colburn School is the only music school in the US to offer full scholarships to all students. Some of the finest dance students in the country attend the Conservatory of Performing Arts at Point Park University, and the faculty at Parsons The New School For Design, are top professionals from New York’s art and design communities.


Theater: Boston University College of Fine Arts

The School of Theatre in the College of Fine Arts at Boston University was established over 60 years ago as one of the country’s leading institutions for the study of acting, stage management, design, production, and all aspects of the theatrical profession. Today, as one of the top conservatory-style training programs within larger liberal arts programs, the School of Theatre has 10 performance venues ranging from 60-seat black box studios to a 900-seat, Broadway-style stage. Students are encouraged to participate in professional experiences through the Professional Theatre Initiative (PTI). It is designed to link students with a network of professional theatre affiliates throughout the U.S., including the Huntington Theatre Company, in residence at Boston University. Producers Stewart F. Lane (CFA’73) and Bonnie Comley have endowed a new musical theater track to begin in fall 2015 with a specialized curriculum and the production of large-scale musicals on an annual basis. Seniors in all BFA programs showcase their work for professional audiences at The InCite Arts Festival in New York City each spring. Visit the website


Music: The Colburn School

More than 50 years after being founded as the Community School for the Arts, the Colburn Conservatory of Music was created in 2003 to provide gifted, instrumental musicians with training from a renowned faculty and access to professional-level performance opportunities. The Conservatory, which is a nationally accredited, degree-granting program, is the nation’s only music school to offer full scholarship support, including room, board and tuition, to all students. Naturally, admission to the Conservatory is highly selective. The school presents Conservatory students in more than 150 recitals and performances each year, many of which are free and open to the public. A major campus expansion in 2007 provides contemporary classroom, rehearsal, and practice facilities and serves the community with public spaces including a performing arts library, three concert halls, and a café. The state of-the-art campus is located in the ‘heart-of-art’ of downtown Los Angeles, neighboring Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Music Center, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) and Grand Performances at California Plaza. Visit the website


Dance: Point Park University

The dance program at Point Park University’s Conservatory of Performing Arts is one of the best in the country and attracts students who are dedicated and committed to being the best. The Department of Dance offers Bachelor of Arts degrees in dance and dance pedagogy as well as Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance. The University’s $16 million George Rowland White Performance Center opened in 2008 in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh. The 44,000-square-foot center houses state-of-the-art studio and performance facilities and includes four floors with extra-height ceilings and eight studios for rehearsals and performances. Artistic directors, agents, and company managers from various dance performance companies attend the dance showcase held in the spring semester. They are invited to teach classes and observe solo works by graduating seniors of the dance department for the purpose of future employment. Graduates of the dance program at Point Park University are currently performing on stages all over the world. Alumni perform with prestigious companies, on Broadway and on national tours. Visit the website


Visual Arts: Parsons The New School For Design

Parsons has been a leading institution of art and design education since its inception, spearheading new movements and teaching methods that have propelled artists and designers creatively and politically. Parsons students are designers, artists, and scholars who learn to apply the transformative capacity of design responsibly, creatively, and purposefully. Today, students work in an increasingly digital landscape, and the curriculum acknowledges this by making digital literacy a foundational component of first-year coursework. A diverse community of students and faculty explores multiple sites and scales of engagement, from on-campus research initiatives to partnerships that bring about change in New York and in the world. The Parsons faculty is made up of more than 150 full-time and more than 1,000 part-time faculty selected from the highest echelons of New York’s art and design communities. Design students at Parsons benefit from instruction and mentorship by some of the most accomplished artists, designers, photographers, illustrators, and scholars in the world. Visit the website


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