Hi! I am a friend of Taylor's, and am a freshman musical theatre major at Ball State.
I would say the primary element of training at BSU is acting. In order to sing and dance, you must have strong acting training, or else the purpose of the song or dance will not be effective. Even as a freshman, I see how this acting training has transferred into my voice and dance work. In order to be a well-rounded performer, you must be a knowledgeable actor. This is greatly stressed here at Ball State, and I am so grateful that it is!
We take music theory and sight singing classes two times a week, piano once a week, acting for two hours two times a week, voice lab once a week, a voice lesson once a week, two different dance classes twice a week, Aesthetics (which is Theatre History and Script Analysis), and then any general education classes that we may take. I have found a shared union between all three disciplines. Music Theory is valued here, and it is interesting to see how much we learn transfers into our work with voice music, etc. Our piano work includes scales, chords, both major and minor, and for our final, we are to play 32 bars of one of our own voice rep pieces. Sight singing both in major and minor keys is one of current focuses at this point in the semester. In voice lessons, we sing both classical musical theatre, and have one pop song each semester. We have five musical theatre songs in our rep each semester, and one pop song.
In acting class, the Musical Theatre majors are mixed in with the BFA Actors of the same level (freshman, sophomore). Acting class revolves strictly around straight acting, and sophomore year, a class is taken about acting the song. We also work on acting the song in voice lab. Right now in acting, we are working on monologues that will push us out of our comfort zone.
Placement for dance is chosen from the performance at your audition. Both of my dance classes this semester are mixed in with upper level dance majors. Most dance classes are mixed in with dance majors or minors. I am taking both Jazz and Ballet this semester--each two hour classes. Tap is available next year, but the other styles are tricky because our schedules are already so full. However, I am sure it is more than possible to fit these things in.
I hope I answered all of your questions!
If you have any more, please feel free to ask. I love seeing these well-thought out questions