Charles Sturt University (CSU) offers an alternative to students who want to study acting and the theatre in practice-based environments in Wagga Wagga and Bathurst.
Following a review of the University’s current degree offerings it became apparent there was sufficient interest to create a Bachelor of Theatre Media, a distinct degree in its own right, rather than a specialisation within the Bachelor of Communication degree.
CSU in Bathurst now offers the Bachelor of Theatre Media program and will be accepting students into the degree for the first time in 2019.
The School also offers a Bachelor of Creative Industries (Acting and Performance) via online learning or at CSU in Wagga Wagga which focusses on training actors for television, stage, screen and a variety of production roles.
Acting Head of the CSU School of Communication and Creative Industries Dr Sharon Schoenmaker said the University believes both degrees service the needs of emerging performers wishing to pursue their interests in creative industries.
“It was clear students and Australia’s theatre community more broadly wanted degree offerings to suit the needs of actors and performers, as well as those students wishing to engage in production roles in theatre and media,” Dr Schoenmaker said.
“As a result of consultations with industry as well as students, Charles Sturt University has committed to increasing our current degree offerings to include actor training, particularly in new and emergent acting fields such as virtual reality, games, motion capture, and animation.”
Dr Schoenmaker commented that the University’s commitment to the performance arts is evident in its decision to invest almost $4 million in upgrading the CSU Riverina Playhouse Theatre in Wagga Wagga.
Dr Schoenmaker said the combined investment and programs offered at CSU in Wagga Wagga and in Bathurst sees the University uniquely positioned as the largest regional university in the provision of performance training in Australia.
Charles Sturt University offers students city-standard theatre and acting education but not the high cost of living that comes with living in major metropolitan cities. The affordable lifestyle in regional areas is more conducive in allowing students to focus on their study.
CSU has fostered close industry links, Dr Schoenmaker said, having recently hosted the inaugural AusAct, which drew delegates from around the country including the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Queensland University of Technology, Federation University, and the Adelaide Centre for the Arts.
“The conference was the first of its kind dedicated to actor training, and highlighted the importance of collaboration and research within the Australian theatre community,” Dr Schoenmaker said.