The Department of Drama offers conservatory-style training at a major American university, combined with a level of integration with a professional theater company that is unparalleled among undergraduate programs.

The department offers four bachelor of fine arts (B.F.A.) degree programs in acting, musical theater, stage management, and theater design and technology. Students may also apply for direct admission to the theater management track of our bachelor of science (B.S.) degree program. Undergraduates put classroom theory into practice through productions and various special opportunities, including Wednesday Lab, study abroad, and numerous community engagement initiatives. These productions and programs are open to the community at large.

A dedicated faculty of working professionals; a unique affiliation with Syracuse Stage, an outstanding Equity theater company that shares our theater complex as well as the knowledge and experience of its working professionals; opportunities to learn by experience—in Syracuse, New York City, Los Angeles, and abroad—in various areas of the entertainment industry; and the academic resources of a major American university—all of these combine to create an undergraduate theater training program with a unique scope and a proven record of success.


The Department of Drama envisions a world transformed through the power and transcendence of the theater arts. We strive to make this vision a reality by:

  • Equipping our students with the skills necessary to compete and succeed in the profession.
  • Developing imaginative, courageous and passionate theater artists.
  • Creating an artistic environment that fosters excellence in scholarship, professionalism, and collaboration.
  • Providing opportunities for exploration, engagement, and innovation through practice and production.
  • Empowering our students to cultivate a lifetime of social awareness, distinct vision, and artistic integrity in presenting and celebrating the diverse stories of human life.

Our mission is enlivened by our synergistic relationship with Syracuse Stage and enhanced by the global resources of Syracuse University.

Chair's Welcome

Syracuse University—with its rich intellectual and cultural resources, its vibrant student body, its experienced faculty, and its commitment to social responsibility and community engagement—has reinvigorated our work as teachers and as theater artists.

We encourage you to consider the ways in which SU and the Department of Drama can help prepare you for a life in the arts, no matter what medium you choose to work in. We invite you to explore our programs of study and to schedule an on-campus visit.

The Department of Drama is committed to a learning environment that builds on a rich past as it enters a new era, encouraging excellence, imagination, artistry, and leadership to empower our students to create the theater of the future.

Our bachelor of fine arts (B.F.A.) degree programs in acting, musical theater, stage management, and theater design and technology as well as our flexible bachelor of science (B.S.) degree in drama offer unique educational experiences while supporting strong development of skills for those who wish to explore the world of professional theater in a setting that combines rigorous training with a traditional university education.

The spectrum of theatrical experience for students provided by the Department of Drama includes main stage and laboratory productions directed by faculty members and guest directors, co-productions with Syracuse Stage, student-directed shows, community engagement activities, and one-person cabarets. The symbiotic relationship between the department and Syracuse Stage provides drama students the opportunity to observe and interact with working professionals on a daily basis.

If you are committed to excellence in a career in theater and entertainment and want to learn in a professional environment, we welcome your application to the Department of Drama.

Ralph Zito

Chair and Professor, Department of Drama

Syracuse Stage

The Department of Drama has a unique affiliation with Syracuse Stage, Central New York’s premier professional theater. Founded in 1974, Stage has produced more than 300 plays in 40 seasons, including a number of world, American, and East Coast premieres. America’s leading actors, directors, and designers work and/or have worked at Stage, including Tony Award-winners Lillias White, Chuck Cooper, and Elizabeth Franz and Emmy Award recipients Jean Stapleton, Sam Waterston, John Cullum, James Whitmore, and Ben Gazzara.

The Department of Drama began its symbiotic relationship with Syracuse Stage in 1974, when Syracuse University hired Arthur Storch to serve as both artistic director and also as director of the Department of Drama. The affiliation between the drama department and Syracuse Stage is fostered by their common home in one theater complex. This relationship flourished under James A. Clark’s guidance as department chair and Syracuse Stage producing director from 1992-2007, with Tazewell Thompson and Robert Moss serving as artistic directors for Syracuse Stage.

Timothy J. Bond arrived in 2008 as producing artistic director for the Stage and the department with a vision to enhance and strengthen this unity even further. He was joined in 2010 by department chair Ralph Zito, and they worked together to provide even more opportunities for our students to gain professional experience in all areas of study as they earn their undergraduate degrees.

Department Policies

Department of Drama policies are administered by the office of the department chair.

Contact the office with questions


View the Department of Drama's current season, which includes information on purchasing season subscriptions and single tickets.

View Current Season