The Theatre Arts Department offers:


Overall theatre training required to complete the A.A. Degree and transfer requirements to universities. Santa Monica College is the leading transfer school to the University of California system, USC and Loyola Marymount and the leading transfer school to the combined UC and CSU systems. Our students are consistently accepted for transfer to a variety of prestigious universities. In the past, we had an exceptional string of transfer students accepted into Juilliard -- 8 of our students accepted and 2 students wait listed in 8 consecutive years with only 20 accepted nationwide per year!!

Performance Training and Opportunities...

Intense classes specifically for the training of the actor including Acting classes in Modern Realism and various historical styles, vocal production for the stage and stage movement.

Our department produces four to five Main Stage productions a year including at least one Photo from 'Sweeney Todd'musical, two Studio Stage productions and one summer production for younger audiences. In addition, we offer several more performance presentations such as Musical Theatre Workshop, Acting Styles and Directing and Audition class performances. Every year we enter all of our shows into the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival competition for colleges and universities (including Grad schools) nationwide. EveryPacific Overtures year we have several students nominated to compete for the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship. We have had students advance to the regional semi-finals and finals for the Irene Ryan award out of hundreds who compete as well as one student who won our regional competition and visited the Kennedy Center along with winners from other regions. Countless number of our students have received Best of Festival Award recognition. We've also had several productions invited to compete at the regional festival and have had one invited to perform at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.; Once On This Island (full production). In addition, student mentor projects are often entered into competition under a variety of categories such as playwriting, acting, directing and/or musical directing. Several of our mentor projects have also been invited to perform at the regional festival and one was invited to perform at the Kennedy Center as well; SLAVERY (playwriting, acting & directing mentor project with a student costume design mentor).

Unique Learning Experiences...

Photo from acting master class

Excellent Technical Theatre Training...

...including Stagecraft, Costuming, Make-Up, Sound and Lighting classes. Our program offers numerous opportunities to work in a variety of technical areas on department productions. In addition to the Associate of Arts degree in Theatre, we offer an Associate of Science degree and Certificate of Achievement in Technical Theatre.
Stage managers and student designers (Costume, Make-Up, Lighting, Set Design, Sound Design), working under the supervision of a mentor, are also entered into the KCACTF competition receiving both regional and national recognition.

Past recognition:

  • National Award Winner - Patty Briles, Set Design

  • National Award Winner - Tira Blixt, Make-Up Design

  • Kate Drain Lawson Award - Camilla Magnusson, Make-Up Design

  • National Stage Management Fellowship - Alycia Perez, Stage Management

  • Almost every one of our student designers has been nominated to compete at the regional festival

Acceptance / Enrollment. . .

No audition is required for acceptance into the Theatre Arts program. There are some classes, however, that require audition before enrollment. Audition information is available for those classes on our Audition webpage.