Musical Theatre

Musical Theatre

Musical Theatre Program Overview 

Just a short trip away from the world-famous stages of New York City, Manhattanville uniquely teaches students the technique and artistry needed for a career in musical theatre Students in Manhattanville’s musical theatre program:

  • Have the opportunity to audition for six mainstage productions each year, including two musicals
  • Learn from expert professionals in the classroom and through private lessons
  • Study and practice their craft in four on-campus performance venues in addition to off-campus festivals and events

Our BFA in Musical Theatre will expand your performance skills, develop a deep understanding of the genre, and build critical professional skills such as communications and media, writing, and digital media production through general education courses, helping students prepare to fulfill their dreams of a performance career.

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Students applying to Manhattanville’s BFA in Musical Theatre must complete the entrance audition process.

Evaluated by a panel of expert faculty members, the entrance audition measures your current level of artistry as well as your predicted ability to successfully complete the curriculum. The entrance audition is also used to recommend scholarships for musical theatre students. Prospective first year, transfer and current Manhattanville students who would like to enter the musical theatre program must audition either live or via video through our ACCEPTD portal.

The complete audition package includes:

  • One short contemporary monologue
  • Two songs in different styles, one up-tempo and one ballad, of any length
  • Dance in any style, 30-60 seconds
  • Resume detailing musical theatre skills and experience
  • Headshot and/or photo

What do our audition evaluators look for? A balance of current achievement as well as your potential. We’ll select students based on the three areas of the discipline:

  • Current and Potential Acting Ability
  • Current and Potential Dancing Ability
  • Current and Potential Singing Ability 

Learn how to submit an entrance audition for the musical theatre degree program.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre degree requires 120 credits distributed among core major courses, general education courses, and electives. Core courses entail professional-level study in singing, acting, and dance, while our general education requirements offer a liberal arts context.

Requirements include:

  • Entrance audition
  • 60-70 credits in musical theatre performance, piano, acting, dance, stagecraft, and production courses
  • 8 credits of applied voice 
  • 30 liberal arts credits 
  • Attendance at on-campus concerts, recitals, and plays
  • Senior Recital 

Review complete requirements for the BFA in Musical Theatre.


Musical Theatre Courses
As a musical theatre major, you’ll expand your abilities in voice, movement, and acting as well as your knowledge of theatre history in America and around the world. Courses focus on studying performance craft and the essentials of musical theatre, but you’ll also receive training in basic technical theatre.

Designed to be as hands-on as possible, many courses, workshop-style courses, and seminars include opportunities to practice and perform various genres. Musical theatre major classes include:

  • Voice
  • Musical Theatre Performance Seminars
  • Acting the Song I
  • Acting the Song II: Scene to Song
  • Musical Theatre Lab 
  • Musical Theatre Specific Piano and Music Theory Courses 
  • Dance for Musical Theatre
  • Ballet, Modern Dance, and Tap 
  • Acting, Voice and Speech
  • Stagecraft
  • Production Practicum


Career Outcomes in Musical Theatre
Whether you’re itching to get your first acting job or you envision a career performing year-round, our theatre degree program builds the experience and abilities that get you there. Alumni of Manhattanville’s robust musical theatre program have gone on to perform in national tours, off-Broadway, and in regional theatres, performing everything from plays to musicals to opera.

You may have seen our alums in:

  • Ragtime
  • A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder
  • The Wizard of Oz 
  • Les Misérables
  • Chicago
  • The Drowsy Chaperone
  • 42nd Street
  • New York City Opera’s Candide directed by Hal Prince


Our alums have proudly performed at: 


The skills you learn in the Manhattanville musical theatre program can start you on the road to a a variety of careers on screen, in print, and behind the scenes. Several of our graduates have been booked as extras in award-winning television shows and in feature and indie films, regional commercials, and national print ad campaigns, including a campaign for Reebok. Backed by the well-rounded undergraduate curriculum, students have even started their own theatre companies after graduation.

Required Courses
DTH.1000 Creative Process


DTH.1001 Acting I


DTH.4121 Dance for Musical Theatre


DTH.4500A Production Practicum: Stage Crew


MUA.1003 Voice Class Instruction


MUA.1004 Voice Class Instruction II


MUA.4475 Performance Project/Music Theater


MUA.4487 Musical Theatre Ensemble


.DTH ____ Dance of Choice


  Choose one of the following:  
MUTR.1010 Music Theory I: Foundations and Sight-Singing for Musical Theatre


MUH.2235 American Musical Theatre: Then and Now


DTH.2214 Dance History I: Global Contexts


DTH.2216 Dance History II: Contemporary Traditions



Private lessons (MUA 4610 and MUA 4611) can be substituted for Voice Classes (MUA 1003 and MUA 1004).

DTH 4400: Performance Project: Theatre or DTH 4410: Performance Project: Dance can be substituted for MUA 4475.

MUA 4483: Chorus can be substituted for MUA 4487: Musical Theatre Ensemble.

Any level of Music Theory can be substituted for MUTR 1000.

Mainstage Musical Productions
While earning your bachelor’s in musical theatre, you’ll learn to prepare for professional auditions while gaining on-stage experience bringing you closer to your career goals. This happens through student participation in our six show mainstage season, which includes two musicals each year, a guest directed twenty-nine hour musical, as well as multiple concerts that are capstone events for classroom studies.

Senior Musical Theatre Recitals
Seniors graduating from the BFA in Musical Theatre give a capstone recital. The recital is a celebration of all of the skills students have learned in the BFA program, and a chance to perform current audition repertoire for a cheering crowd before launching into live auditions in the industry.

Broadway at Manhattanville Club
Broadway at Manhattanville (B@M) is the musical theatre club on campus. Made up of students from the performing arts programs as well as non-performance majors, the B@M mission is to develop a space where anyone can perform and discuss their love of musical theatre.

Performance Venues
Manhattanville’s robust musical theatre facilities include four dedicated on-campus venues. These flexible spaces provide a home for any performance, from a one-person cabaret to a 40 person musical.

  • Little Theatre: Performance space for musicals, plays, and dance concerts 
  • The EX Theatre: The black box space, used for workshops, experimental theatre, and events such as Fresh Ink, our new works project
  • Reid Castle: Home of multiple performance events
  • Pius X Hall: Hosts recitals and workshops 

In addition to these performance spaces, we have multiple individual soundproof practice rooms available for private lessons, practice and rehearsals. 


Manhattanville’s Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre degree program supports in-class training with multiple ways to apply your skills on the stage and beyond. If you’re searching for a musical theatre degree backed by experience, visit our beautiful campus just minutes from the theatres, halls, and studios of New York City.

Ready to apply? Review admissions information and apply today. Or, request more information to learn more.