College of Fine Arts



Main Stage Productions per year

Where you can shine or support as you like.


Studio Season Productions per year

Student acted and directed productions to further enhance your education.


Total Credit Hours

With plenty of room for specialization through electives.

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Headshot of Melanie Turner

Melanie Turner

Administrative Coordinator

Department of Theatre & Dance, College of Fine Arts

College of Fine Arts

Department of Theatre and Dance

114 Fine Arts Building

Lexington, KY 40506

Program website


  • BA

Students get hands-on training and one-on-one mentorship from a professional theatre faculty. Our liberal arts focus is coupled with ongoing career counseling to ensure successful transition from campus to professional life. Students are encouraged to find their passion and pursue it – many students participate in internships and study abroad opportunities as a core component of the undergraduate experience.


Beyond the classroom

UK Theatre and Dance produces a full mainstage production season annually including dance and musical theatre productions. Additionally, students have the opportunity to direct in the student laboratory season. Whether you assist with scenic, light, costume or sound design, or let your talents soar on stage, there is a practicum section that will help you gain the hands-on experience to reach your artistic and professional goals. Theatre majors are also encouraged to pursue internships to bridge the divide between academic study and a professional career. The Department of Theatre and Dance regularly hosts renowned guest artists for residencies and master classes.

The Bachelor of Arts in Theatre offers courses in:

  • Acting
  • Playwriting
  • Directing
  • Set Design
  • Costume Design
  • Technology
  • Theatre Studies
  • Lighting Design
"When I began my college search, I thought I wanted to attend a small university where I would be able to develop close, personal relationships with my peers and professors. I did not realize that this was possible at a flagship university until I visited UK. Here, I am able to be a part of a small community within my major while still being a part of the legacy that comes with being a Wildcat."

Haley Goode

Theatre and Family Sciences

Classes & Requirements

What You'll Study

Students in the Department of Theatre and Dance receive the highest caliber training--whether their passions are onstage or backstage--and our success is proven through the success of our alumni nationwide. The department's rich history and tradition, going back over 100 years, ground our programs with the consistency and reputation to excel in a competitive marketplace. Our faculty are committed to helping our students to develop to their fullest potential and ensure that their college experiences are exceptional. The Bachelor of Arts in Theatre is also flexible enough to allow for our students to pursue a double major.

Major Requirements 

All Theatre majors are required to complete 11 core courses.​ The Core Major requirements total 33 hours. Students will also complete 30 hours of UK Core. The College of Fine Arts additionally requires that all majors complete 6 hours of coursework outside their departments but within the College of Fine Arts and at least 39 hours of courses at or above the 300-level.

Theatre Electives

If a student has a particular interest area within theatre, these electives may be selected and completed within a specific theatre focus under the guidance of the student's advisor. Every Theatre major is required to complete at least 12 hours of Theatre electives. The focus areas are Performance, Design and Technology, Playwriting, and General Theatre Studies.

Musical Theatre Certificate

Open to Theatre, Dance, and Music Performance (Vocal) Majors

The undergraduate interdisciplinary certificate in Musical Theatre gives students the opportunity to study with seasoned Broadway professionals and hone their skills in the field. A collaboration of the Department of Theatre and Dance and School of Music, the program offers mentorship and training in voice, dance, acting and musical theatre techniques, fostering versatile and highly-skilled performing artists.

A limited number of students are admitted to this selective program through an audition each spring. 

Beyond the Classroom

Students in the Musical Theatre Certificate Program are encouraged to audition for and participate in the annual UK Theatre and Dance musical, the UK School of Music’s “It’s a Grand Night for Singing!,” and national summer stock opportunities to enhance their skills. In addition, UK Choristers produces a musical revue each year that features musical theatre repertoire.

Additionally, students have the opportunity to work with renowned guest artists for residencies and master classes. Recent guests include Jonathon Groff (Frozen, Glee, Spring Awakening) and Sheri Sanders (Rock the Audition master class). 

Courses Include:

  • Vocal Ensemble Class
  • Class Instruction in Piano
  • Voice Class
  • Musical Theatre Technique
  • Ballet
  • Jazz Dance
  • Acting: Scene Study
  • Musical Theatre Dance 
Sign up for an Audition Check Out Our Current Season

Enhancing Your Time at UK

There are countless ways to “see blue.” on campus, but the best way to maximize your journey at the University of Kentucky is by engaging in an Education Abroad opportunity.

This will allow you to gain a global perspective and enhance future employability. As you take the first step towards investing in your future, we encourage you to take advantage of all the opportunities UK has to offer. Take a look at some of the options UK Education Abroad & Exchanges office suggests to complement your major! #SeeBlueAbroad

View Major Advising Page

Imagine Your Future


Actors express ideas and portray characters in theater, film, television, and other performing arts media.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics | Click the link for more info.

Number of Jobs


in 2023

10 Year Job Outlook


new jobs (average)

Work Environment

Actors work in various settings, including production studios, theaters, and theme parks, or on location. Work assignments are usually short, ranging from 1 day to a few months.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Headshot of Melanie Turner

Melanie Turner

Administrative Coordinator

Department of Theatre & Dance, College of Fine Arts

College of Fine Arts

Department of Theatre and Dance

114 Fine Arts Building

Lexington, KY 40506