Performing Arts

Training Future Theatrical Practitioners

The Performing Arts Department draws upon practice, theory and criticism, and history as a foundation for lifelong learning and personal excellence in theatre studies. Interdisciplinary by nature, the theatre degree program has a strong communal and collaborative base and offers a well-rounded liberal arts education. Students define their place as theatre artists and producers within the greater community by producing contemporary and classic works, including canonical plays, experimental projects, and works by visiting artists and directors. The faculty's expertise includes acting, voice, directing, choreography, stage management, playwriting, storytelling, theatre history and criticism, and costume, set, and light design. Our proximity to Chicago's robust theatre and performing arts community augments teaching and learning opportunities for both students and faculty.

State-of-the-Art Facilities

Facilities include a 500-seat, state-of-the-art theatre, and a smaller flexible performance and instructional space seating up to 100. Backstage technology consists of a counterweight system that provides for five motorized positions dedicated to staging lighting and permanent running lights throughout both performance spaces and the main theater corridor. The 100-seat Black Box Studio Theatre boasts a technical mezzanine sixteen feet off the stage floor for optimal control booth operation and a suspended tension wire grid.

Additional facilities include a costume shop, prop room, dressing and green room, box office, light lab, lighting and sound booth, scene shop, access to Design Labs, and the Innovation and Production Lab.


Experience live performances in our professional new theater spaces: a 500-seat mainstage auditorium and an experimental black box theater.

Explore Theatre Northwest

Program Highlights

All Performing Arts faculty have earned graduate degrees in their respective fields and hold active memberships in the various professional organizations in their specialties, including the Association for Theatre in Higher Education and the United States Institute of Theatre Technology.

The theatre program is known for offering classes with a high level of student/teacher interaction. The program emphasizes individual attention with abundant opportunities for personal exploration and growth. Responsibilities and expectations increase according to each student's creative and academic progress. Still, students at all grade levels act direct, design, stage-manage, research, critique, and produce theatre art in close collaboration with faculty, student peers, and respected visiting artists.

  • Arts Management
  • Directing
  • Scenic Design
  • Costume Design
  • Lighting Design
  • Sound Design
  • Acting
  • Projection Design
  • Technical Direction
  • Playwriting
  • Stage Management
  • Educational Theatre

For More Information

Download the Departmental Information Sheet for Performing Arts to learn more about the degree and course requirements.

Contact Us

Office Hours

Monday ‑ Friday: 9:00 a.m. ‑ 5:00 p.m

Phone Number

Schedule an Advising Appointment

Mark Baer
(219) 980-6809

Dean, School of the Arts

David Klamen
(219) 980-6813

Email Address

Fax Number

(219) 981-4224

Administrative Coordinator

Erin McHugh
(219) 980-6810

Mailing Address

IU Northwest
Performing Arts Department
Arts & Sciences 2025
3400 Broadway
Gary, Indiana 46408

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