Communication - Theater/Performance Emphasis

"I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being." ~ Oscar Wilde

The theater program at Fresno Pacific is committed to exploring through art what it means to be human. Onstage and off—in the classroom, at rehearsals and during production work—we learn the craft of telling stories dramatically. As storytellers, we look for the stories that reflect who we are: our passions, pains, pleasures, and diverse perspectives on life and living. As followers of Christ, we seek to tell stories that reflect themes of redemption, justice, grace and love; themes that address the greater spiritual reality in which we all play a role.

Stories teach us both what is human and what is humane. As we put our theatrical storytelling onstage at Fresno Pacific University, we share our discoveries, our immediacies, with the community that is our audience.

The FPU theater program is committed to making available classroom and performance experiences which encourage student growth on multiple levels—artistic, intellectual, physical, social and spiritual. As we perform, audience and study theater, we engage with various voices, cultures and styles of performance. Students are active collaborators in the process of making theater.

Unique Features

  • join an artistic community
  • learn multiple aspects of the theatrical process—from performance and design/construction to directing and stage- and house-managing
  • pursue vocational and avocational goals through coursework in theater and performance
  • gain skills that can be applied to future church and ministry work, teaching, graduate study or conservatory training
  • have opportunities to explore related courses in film, media video and audio production and music

Our Graduates

This emphasis offers an introduction to theater and its history for those new to performance, and it allows experienced performers to refine skills and gain a greater cultural awareness of the impact of theater. Future opportunities can be found with theater companies of all sizes.

Program Details

Students share their artistry with the public through the following:


  • Fall Mainstage Play —A full-length play is produced each semester. The mainstage plays form the core of the Company's production efforts.
  • Performance Hour — An evening of readings and performances held during the Build a Culture of Peace festival week. Students, faculty and staff share found and original works based on the festival's theme.
  • Studio Performances — In alternating years, acting and directing students prepare final scene projects.


  • Spring Mainstage Play
  • One-Acts — Theater students, alumni and/or faculty direct one-act plays.
  • Re-enactment Project — Students from the World Theater course perform a historical play on the campus green for the community. Past performances include medieval mystery plays, a Spanish auto sacramentale, and 20th century social protest theater from California and Argentina.
  • Senior Thesis Performances — Seniors in the theater minor or personalized major complete their requirements with a self-designed performance.


Required Courses (6 Courses, 18 Units)

Select six of the following:

  • COM-440 Performance and Culture (3)
  • DRA-350 Acting (3)
  • DRA-360 Directing and Staging Texts (3)
  • LIT-380 World Theater: Roots to 1700 (3)
  • LIT-385 World Theater: 1700 to Present (3)
  • LIT-395 Text and Performance (3)
  • SOC-300 Cultural Anthropology (3)

Program Director

Parent Program