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Student Life at UIC School of Theatre and Music

Student Life at UIC School of Theatre and Music

Between practicing, performing, studying, and socializing, life at the School of Theatre and Music is never dull. In addition to classes, students attend peer’s concerts and shows, run their own clubs and organizations, and connect with Chicago’s arts community through jobs and internships or study abroad.

International Exchange

Every year, multiple UIC theatre students spend a semester at Eolia Conservatory of Dramatic Arts and at the National University of Ireland, Galway. Both place a strong emphasis on practical experience and the collaboration of actors, playwrights and directors. 

“Studying at the National University of Ireland in Galway has been so rewarding. I have been able to deeply reflect about my goals and ambitions. It has been a journey of self-discover and never-ending creative opportunities. When you study abroad, you get a blank canvas and you get to paint it anyway your heart desires. You create your own opportunities.” 

— Sarah Sukhni
BA Theatre and Performance

Career Preparation and Internships

Chicago’s thriving arts scene offers many opportunities to gain experience at top arts companies. Our ongoing partnerships and faculty connections help link our students some of the best, including: 

  • Steppenwolf Theatre Company
  • Chicago Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Lookingglass Theatre Company
  • Jazz Institute of Chicago
  • Bella Voce
  • Grant Park Music Festival Apprentice
  • Chorale
  • Fulcrum Point New Music Project
  • Asian Pop-Up Cinema
  • 2112 inc. 
  • Ravinia

Professional Development

Both theatre and music departments provide degree students with an opportunity to meet and learn from professionals in the field

Masterclasses are designed to help students launch their careers in after they graduate. At weekly meetings, concerts, performances and presentations, students engage with a wide variety of performance styles and artists.

Music masterclasses puts students in front of music industry professionals, wellness professionals, solo artists, chamber ensembles, large ensembles, instrumentalists and vocalists who have successful careers in music. Participation is required for all music degree student.

Theatre masterclasses connect students with theatre professionals from movement coaches, actors, directors, playwrights, designers, vocal coaches, scenic designers, costume designers with opportunities to network and learn from seasoned professionals.

Theatre Student Organizations

Chicago Circle Players, the oldest student-run organization on UIC’s campus, is devoted to helping students create and produce plays as well as organizing events. Past projects include open mics, movie nights, and 24-hour plays.

Lucha Theatre invites students to learn and read plays written by Hispanic playwrights and host regular panel discussions with influential theatre artists. Past artists include Vanessa Garcia, Ricky Muñoz, Ayssette Muñoz, Sandra Delgado, Georgina Escobar, Tomas Salas, Duran Lucio, and Marcela Muñoz.

Red Light School District is a collaborative improv troupe that focuses on relationships and team building skills. They have performed at iO Theatre, The Playground Theatre, The pH Comedy Theatre, and the CIC Theater.

Unworthy Scaffold Theatre Company is a student run, student directed theatre company on campus focused on producing classical and classically-inspired works and expanding the theatrical opportunities at UIC. USTC is open to all UIC students, even beyond our productions– host monthly play readings, discussions, and viewings in order to expand our collective understanding of what theatre is, was, and can be. Any genre, style, or adaptation is fair game as long as it (or its basis) is over 100 years old! Timeless stories. Infinite possibilities.  

Music Student Organizations

Downtown Voices is a student led co-ed a capella group from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Founded in 2014, Downtown Voices sings a variety of genres like pop, rock, theater, and more. Downtown Voices competes in the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella and performs for various events around campus and in the Chicagoland area.

Kappa Kappa Psi is a co-educational fraternal organization that advances college and university bands for the benefit of its members and society through dedicated service and support to bands, encouragement of musical growth, lifelong educational experiences, leadership opportunities, and recognition.