BFA Theatre Arts Design & Production

The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in theatre arts design & production at Boston University College of Fine Arts provides students the opportunity to explore multiple disciplines, from lighting to scene design, within a conservatory education.

Degree Type

  • Undergraduate


  • In-Person


  • Full-Time


  • On-Campus
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BU’s BFA in theatre arts design & production (D&P) prepares students to transform into collaborative theatre artists who work productively under the stresses of the theatrical profession and, most importantly, learn to integrate design, production, and management skills with their own personal sensibility. Students discover who they are, what they do well, and what they are capable of doing.

Theatre arts D&P students can partake in design and production opportunities as well as playwriting, dramaturgy, performance, and directing. The theatre arts track aims to create well-rounded theatre-makers with a passion for storytelling.  

What makes our Theatre Arts D&P program one-of-a-kind?

Our program is designed for multi-passionate students who are driven, self-aware, and seek to excel in more than one design, production, and management discipline.

CFA will be a production home to cultivate community and specific skills. You’ll have the freedom to explore multiple facets of theatre. Your classes are embedded in both performance and design and production and you’ll get to see how far you’ve come when you present your work in BU’s Senior Capstone experience, celebrating alongside your fellow theatre-makers.

Program of Study

Before officially declaring a BFA Design, Production & Management major, each first-year student entering the BU School of Theatre is admitted into the First Year Design, Production & Management Core. The First Year Core experience establishes a base vocabulary that serves as the foundation for a student’s progression into their chosen BFA degree program. In addition, the First Year Core is designed to provide an appropriate context for faculty evaluation of each student’s strengths, interests, and potential for success in the upper years of training. At the end of the first year, each student will declare a BFA major; these decisions are reviewed and mentored by members of the School of Theatre faculty before a student is officially enrolled in their BFA program.

Training includes a rigorous curriculum, production opportunities, and collaboration with theatre professionals. The average class size can range from eight to 30 students, depending on the course. On average, the student-to-instructor ratio is 15:1, allowing students to be regularly mentored by the School of Theatre faculty, which is comprised of professional theatre artists who work regularly in all facets of theatre and television.

Classes are taught in BU’s dramatic arts complex and production center, Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre, and the CFA Production Center, featuring 75,000 square feet of state-of-the-art classrooms, shops, studios, and equipment.

During their third year, students can partake in study abroad opportunities. In the summer before entering their final year of studies, D&P students are required to register for an off-campus internship with an established, professional arts organization or an approved on-campus internship experience with a member of the BU faculty or staff. Students then take an Internship Reflection course upon returning in the fall.

Situated within a large, top-tier research institution, students pursue coursework in the University Hub, the University’s general education program that is integrated into the undergraduate student experience. This provides students with the chance to dive into other topics, from other colleges and schools, to enhance their studies.

Student Feature

Meet Emma Cavage (CFA’22), a BFA Theatre Arts D&P alum who explored (and fell in love) with directing at BU. Reflecting on when she first applied to BU, “I wanted to get a BFA, and have that rigorous conservatory education, but also have the opportunity to make my own path and focus on directing, while also building up other skills. There’s no other program that offers you a BFA where you also get so much choice,” says Emma.

At BU, Emma was the lead assistant director on a movement piece produced by the School of Theatre called Colossal. For her senior thesis project, she directed Lizzie! a musical based on the Lizzie Borden murders and produced by Senior Theatre Arts Major Productions (STAMP).

She also interned at Theatre Aspen’s Summer Apprenticeship Program, where she led and produced a weekly children’s event, transforming storytime reading into musical performances and skits. In addition, Emma assisted Broadway Choreographer Abbey O’Brien. “I learned a lot about directing and being a woman in creative leadership positions.” In fact, that’s Emma’s goal. “I hope to direct musical theatre in New York City. I want to be part of expanding the American musical theatre canon, specifically as a female creative leader.”

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Develop professional skills through production work, internships, and mentored work and design that will serve as a basis for your transition from the academic world to the larger community of theatre professionals. Be trained by School of Theatre faculty who are working theatre artists that maintain active professional careers.

Guest lecturers are brought in to expand upon the students’ exposure to the professional world. Study abroad and internships are available, plus summer work opportunities in high-profile summer theatres are available to students.

Work hand-in-hand with other theatre-makers (actors, playwrights, stage managers, designers, and more) to create a piece of produced theatre as a culminating event to your education. Participate in the School of Theatre Showcase, held in Boston and/or New York City, and share your work with alumni and working professionals in the field.


BU School of Theatre follows a similar structure to the professional world and there is no better career preparation than actually doing the job you want to do. The scale of shows we put on are technically impressive for university level theatre. SOT is an incredible place to study if you know this is what you want to do, but you definitely have to be passionate about the work to make it worth your while.

– Becca Sundberg (CFA’19) BFA Theatre Arts Design & Production with concentrations in stage management and technical production

Next Steps for Applicants

The best way to determine if BU is right for you is to explore our admission requirements, financial tools, and resources.

Fill out our request for info about BU theatre programs form to receive additional information about your program of interest and to send us any questions you may have.

request info about the bfa theatre arts, design & production program

We are happy to discuss your educational interests and career goals.




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