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The Theatre Conservatory

The Theatre Conservatory of the Chicago College of Performing Arts is distinctively positioned to educate and train its students within a professional conservatory setting. The faculty of working professionals offers a program with a solid balance between academic courses and studio/performance work.

The Theatre Conservatory is located in Roosevelt University’s Chicago campus, home of the acclaimed Auditorium Theatre and the blockbuster hits Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, Miss Saigon, and Show Boat. Centered within the heart of downtown Chicago, one of America’s greatest theatre cities and home to approximately 200 professional theatre companies, the campus is within walking distance of world class arts institutions such as the Goodman Theatre, The Chicago Symphony Orchestra, The Art Institute of Chicago, and the Lyric Opera.

The Theatre Conservatory offers major and minor degree programs for those who desire careers in theatre or musical theatre, intend to pursue graduate studies in these fields, or seek a liberal arts education with a major in theatre.

Introductory level courses offer training in fundamental skills, while advanced courses help equip students with specific professional skills. Students intending to major in theatre or musical theatre should contact the coordinator for recruitment and student services at The Theatre Conservatory to schedule a required audition/interview time or to learn more about the programs.

Academic Performance

All Theatre Conservatory students are required to earn minimum grades of B in all theatre courses required for graduation. Any grade lower than the grade of C- in any Theatre course or non-Theatre course will not be considered a passing grade. (B- is acceptable)

Theatre and Musical Theatre majors are required to audition for all University theatre productions, to perform any role in which they are cast, and to complete technical obligations as assigned. Accordingly, all students enrolled in programs in The Theatre Conservatory should arrange their schedules to allow ample time for afternoon and evening rehearsals.

Attendance at theatre and music performances in the Chicago College of Performing Arts is required every semester of enrollment. All undergraduate theatre and musical theatre majors must successfully pass a minimum of six semesters of performance attendance to qualify for the bachelor’s degree. Specific requirements are announced each semester.


Admission to Roosevelt University does not necessarily include admission to The Theatre Conservatory. Eligibility is determined by audition, interview, and three letters of recommendation. Admission to all courses in The Theatre Conservatory is for Theatre Conservatory students only as determined by their advisors unless listed in the catalog as being for nonmajors. Transfer students must also audition and receive consent to take advanced theatre courses. Transfer credit in theatre will not be validated until after satisfactory completion of one semester at Roosevelt. Transfer students must complete at least 30 semester hours at Roosevelt.


Professional internships

As an integral part of a student’s training, The Theatre Conservatory encourages advanced students to work with professional theatre companies through specially arranged internships. The University has previously arranged internships with theatres such as The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Lifeline Theatre, The Court Theatre, as well as many other theatres in the Chicago area and throughout the nation.

Qualified students may participate in internships in the areas of acting, directing, stage and arts management, design, theatre technology, business and marketing, public relations, development, and front of house.

Health Policy

Successful completion of a degree program in The Theatre Conservatory requires that a student be in good psychological and physical health and have the stamina required to participate safely.

The Conservatory recommends that students have regular medical checkups and report any pre-existing vocal, physical, or psychological conditions that might affect their work to the appropriate faculty member.

Because of the specialized nature of the work involved in theatre training, a general physical examination might not be sufficient to detect conditions such as vocal or orthopedic pathologies. When deemed necessary by a faculty member, students will be required to consult a specialist of the student's choice, in order to insure that participation in course-work or rehearsals will not compromise the student’s health. In cases where such a recommendation is made, a faculty member has the option of requiring documentation from a doctor verifying that continued participation in training work in the conservatory is not contraindicated, before the student will be allowed to resume participation in the class or rehearsal.

The Theatre Conservatory faculty and the administration will work with students to make reasonable accommodation to assignments and schedules in order to allow for the vocal, physical, or psychological rehabilitation. If however, severe pathological conditions prevent satisfactory participation and/or progress towards the completion of a degree program, a student can be required to take a leave of absence from the program, until sufficient health is regained. This determination is made by the Director of The Theatre Conservatory, in consultation with appropriate faculty/staff.

In cases where severe pathological conditions prevent satisfactory participation and or progress towards the completion of a degree program, and where the seriousness of the condition makes a temporary leave of absence from the conservatory inappropriate, a student can be dismissed from the program. This determination is made by the director of the Theatre Conservatory, in consultation with appropriate faculty/staff.

Available Programs