College of Fine Arts Resources
Faculty Advising for Undergraduate and Graduate Students
All CFA students are assigned to a faculty advisor in their school. Students must meet with their faculty advisor prior to registration each semester in order to obtain their Academic Advising Code. We encourage students to consult their faculty advisor whenever they have an academic concern. Advising can assist students in understanding program requirements, semester course selection, and career direction among many other issues.
Each of the three schools in CFA has a program office with staff to assist students with academic and personal concerns. Please consult the CFA website for additional information. In Enrollment Services, located in the Dean’s office, the Director of Undergraduate Student Services serves the undergraduate population with concerns about program requirements, degree completion, curricular training for international students, community building, and overall academic guidance. The Registrar oversees scheduling and academic records, including graduation clearing. The Graduate Affairs office works with prospective and current graduate students, overseeing graduate admissions, graduate financial aid, and graduate student life.
All undergraduate students are assigned peer advisors during their freshman year. Peer advisors are current students who establish a personal connection with students by offering advice and guidance during this transitional time.
College of Fine Arts Academic Computer Lab
The College of Fine Arts Academic Computer Lab is open to Boston University students, faculty, and staff only. Students enrolled in CFA courses that meet in the lab have priority for the completion of specific course assignments.
College of Fine Arts Student Government
The Student Government of the College of Fine Arts serves a community of musicians, actors, visual artists, and scholars. We ensure that our students maintain an active voice within the greater BU student body. CFA Student Government plans social and community building events for the College. We serve as a liaison between students, faculty, and administration. Student Government also organizes philanthropic events for its student body.
School of Music
In 855 Commonwealth Avenue, 120 spacious, acoustically sealed, fully ventilated, individual and ensemble practice rooms create an exceptional studio atmosphere. There is a 485-seat concert hall; three halls for large ensemble rehearsals; a recording studio; two electronic music studios; an academic computing center; and a keyboard instruction lab. Opera rehearsal and coaching studios are located in a spacious facility across the street from the College of Fine Arts. The Tsai Performance Center, three blocks away on the Boston University campus, is an outstanding concert and rehearsal space for the major performing organizations of the School of Music. The Opera Institute performs at the Boston University Theatre, which is also the home of the Huntington Theatre Company.
The library within the School of Music maintains a large collection of scores, recordings, and books. The Boston University Mugar Memorial Library contains a distinguished research collection of books, microfilms, and journals, and it offers a full array of library services such as reference, electronically delivered information, course reserves, and interlibrary loans. Mugar Library’s Gotlieb Archival Research Center includes significant music-related holdings of manuscripts, letters, and first editions.
During the academic year, the School of Music hosts a series of workshops on topics of relevance. Past workshops have included tax preparation for musicians, performance psychology, applying for graduate school, music business basics, and summer music festival application. Additionally, School of Music students have access to an institutional subscription to the Bridge: Worldwide Music Connection, a comprehensive online professional development resource.
In additional to the peer advising group, the School of Music runs a Student Advisory Committee. This committee is comprised of students nominated by their department who meet monthly with the director of the School of Music and the student services coordinator to share information.
Virtual Concert Hall
The Boston University School of Music is proud to launch the Virtual Concert Hall, which is designed to showcase work performed by BU students and faculty. We are now able to present videos in high definition.
School of Theatre
Boston University Professional Theatre Initiative
The Professional Theatre Initiative (PTI) reflects the School’s belief in the necessity of strong artistic relationships with the theatre profession. PTI provides opportunities for stimulating, creative interactions between participating theatres and the BU School of Theatre community. Many students, faculty, and alumni are linked with a variety of professional theatres of many kinds, sizes, and missions to provide experience and interaction that serve both the participant and the theatre company itself.
Our long history of association with the Huntington Theatre Company, in residence at Boston University since 1982, is proof of this long-held belief. In recent years, theatres as varied as the Olney Theatre Center, National Players, Potomac Theatre Project, Vineyard Playhouse, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Actors’ Shakespeare Project, and the Pendragon Theatre, among others, have joined this initiative. Project-based interactions have been successfully forged with theatres such as the Guthrie Theater, Woolly Mammoth Theatre, Primary Stages, and the Arden Theatre.
Often, PTI member theatres provide professional opportunities in acting, directing, and design and/or career development opportunities through internships. In some cases, our interactions with these companies result in new play development and opportunities to conceive new approaches to existing works.
For a full list of our professional partners in this endeavor: www.bu.edu/cfa/theatre/professional/pti.
Boston University New Play Initiative
The New Play Initiative expresses the School’s commitment to the development of new work. This initiative provides playwrights, directors, designers, and actors with a variety of developmental options to support the collaborative creation of new work for the theatre. Students, faculty, alumni, and guest artists are given the opportunity to use the creativity of the rehearsal room to develop their plays, which are then presented through workshop productions. Many New Play Initiative productions are later fully produced by member companies of our Professional Theatre Initiative or featured in our InCite Arts Festival.
Boston Center for American Performance
The Boston Center for American Performance (BCAP) serves as the professional production extension of the School of Theatre. Expanding the definition of the College as an “artistic home,” BCAP is designed to foster significant interaction between members of the professional performing arts world and the College. Creating productions in one of our many venues in our home city, BCAP employs professional artists to collaborate directly with student artists in a way that encourages intergenerational learning, not only through the forging of strong teacher-student relationships but also through the creation of artistic collaborations among artists of differing levels of experience.
This initiative encourages interaction—both locally and nationally—among professional faculty artists, alumni, students, and other affiliated artists. It is the College’s conviction that such collaborations will have a profound impact on our educational mission, become a significant source of inspiration for the creation of new work and/or new approaches to existing work, and provide the College with a professional extension of its expanding and diverse aesthetic.
The School of Theatre offers a variety of spaces in which to realize our students’ creative visions:
- The majestic and expansive Boston University Theatre.
- The Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts in Boston’s South End, a cultural center supported by the Huntington Theatre Company and home to two theatres, rehearsal studios, and an event space.
- A versatile and newly renovated black box, the Stewart F. Lane and Bonnie Comley Studio 210.
- Three modern black box studios at the College of Fine Arts, generous gifts from David J. Copeland and Friends and the family of Juliane Ethel Leilani Miller.
- Three classic Dance Studios appointed with sprung floors and mirrored walls.
- The BU Theatre Production Center, with state-of-the-art shops (Scene, Paint, Props, Costumes, Dye, and Crafts) shared by the School of Theatre and the Huntington Theatre Company.
- Additional production spaces at the BU Theatre, including a light lab, sound studio, and design studios for the design, production, and mangement academic concentrations.
- The School of Theatre Greenroom, a hub for roundtable discussions and student gatherings.
- The intimate proscenium stage known as the TheatreLab@855.
School of Visual Arts
The Visual Arts Resource Library
The Visual Arts Resource Library is a non-circulating collection of books, exhibition catalogues, directories, magazines, videos, and sound recordings available for SVA students and faculty. New materials are added annually, and acquisition recommendations are always welcomed. In addition to housing a 6,000-volume reference collection, which includes many rare and unique items, the library frequently hosts events and workshops targeted at career development education for young artists.
The Visual Arts Resource Library’s digital resources include Apple desktop computers fully loaded with the Adobe Creative Cloud, a large-format digital scanner, a copier, and a black-and-white printer. A collection of digital equipment, including still and video cameras, projectors, audio recording equipment, lighting kits, and more, are available for short-term loans to SVA students and faculty.
Information on employment opportunities, exhibitions, fellowships, and grants are also available in the library. Literature on graduate programs, study abroad, artist fellowships, and summer programs are on file as well.
Galleries at Boston University
The galleries at the College of Fine Arts comprise both professional and student-run exhibition spaces that serve to complement and augment the educational experience. The BU Art Galleries—the 808 Gallery and the Stone Gallery—present professionally organized exhibitions by contemporary artists in all disciplines. The Commonwealth Gallery and Gallery 5 are dedicated to rotating exhibitions organized by graduate and undergraduate students.
Contemporary Perspectives Lecture Series
Each semester, the School of Visual Arts’ Contemporary Perspectives Lecture Series presents a series of lectures by various professional artists, including renowned painters, sculptors, printmakers, graphic designers, art educators, and art critics. Undergraduate and graduate students benefit from exposure to the lecturers’ work, engaging with them in dialogues about the art-making process, as well as benefiting from individual studio visits and critiques. Visiting artist lectures are free and open to the public.
The Artist Development Series
Each year, the Artist Development Series (ADS) presents events on a variety of topics that will help students envision careers in the arts. Series events have included workshops, panels, and weekend-long projects to celebrate collaboration across artistic disciplines.