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Northwestern - Theater and MT Certificate program comparing to traditional BFA options

DivaStageMomDivaStageMom 231 replies1 threads Junior Member
This thread is to evaluate NU's BA Mt Certificate Program against the traditional BFA MT program.

Last night my d was lucky enough to find out she got into NU. while she has impressive academics I was not sure they were NU impressive and therefore we never really evaluated this program - I figured there may be others in the same boat.
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Replies to: Northwestern - Theater and MT Certificate program comparing to traditional BFA options

  • DivaStageMomDivaStageMom 231 replies1 threads Junior Member
    First I will share some background and stats:

    Accepted
    White, Female, NJ
    ACT - 32 (SS), 29 not SS
    4.3 GPA weighted
    2 AP's senior year
    all honors classes
    President of NHS
    great Rec's - one from Tony Award winner Lindsey Mendez
    Lots of EC's - including school theater and community theater
    Started photo business - headshots and special events
    Directs small films

    In addition to this, she submitted a digital interview and an essay - which I guess were impressive? I would have to imagine there was some other kind of hook - her grades are good but I was told they took the top 150 according to academics - I'm not sure she would have been in that 150 ranking - but maybe?

    Anyway, she spoke to somebody in the program who said the MT certificate program is HIGHLY competitive of the 150 admits very few are admitted to the program at the end of freshman year - and then you are stuck at NU as a BA theater major - granted NU is a pretty great school to be "stuck" at - but still - we just went through this hyper-competitive process and we are leaning against going through this again!
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  • PurpleTitanPurpleTitan 13458 replies31 threads Senior Member
    Well, in a traditional BFA MT program, you are stuck there as well. Even more so, in fact. In fact, in a traditional BFA MT program, most classes would be MT related: https://www.okcu.edu/music/academics/degree-programs/undergraduate/music-theater/

    They train students for careers solely in MT.


    At NU, she would get the opportunity to branch out in to other fields as well, double major, etc.

    So the question is whether she wants a complete liberal arts education at an Ivy-equivalent (and possibly do something other than MT as a career), or go all-in on MT.
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  • 4gsmom4gsmom 868 replies29 threads Member
    Just my 2 cents: I have a daughter studying drama at NYU/Tisch and a daughter starting at NU to study theatre in the fall. We feel, as parents, that given how unreliable and unsteady a career in the theatre can be (I'm the black sheep psychologist in a family of actors - we know the world of acting really, really well), that our girls needed to go to world-class universities and get serious educations in addition to their theatre training. My Tisch daughter is a drama major (obviously) and a politics minor and my NU daughter has many interests she plans on pursuing at NU, in addition to theatre. That's why, to us, one would choose a school like NU. Good luck in your decision making!
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  • DivaStageMomDivaStageMom 231 replies1 threads Junior Member
    @4gsmom - the other school we are considering is BU - which would be more like NYU - in lots of ways - fantastic school academically (although maybe not NU - but few are) and great training program - plus she loves Boston and the city campus. But I agree - we wanted a program that checked both the academic and artistic boxes.
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  • 4gsmom4gsmom 868 replies29 threads Member
    My d at Tisch LOVED BU. It's a great choice - and it's easy to double major or major/minor there.
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  • DivaStageMomDivaStageMom 231 replies1 threads Junior Member
    @4gsmom - D applied to NYU - loved the academic school and location - she really vibed with the head of the department at BU and felt more of a connection - but they are very similar schools - both great choices and then it comes down to that feeling...
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  • personhere123personhere123 3 replies0 threads New Member
    edited March 26
    Hey there,

    I'm currently a theatre major at NU in the MT Cert. program. Want to clarify that there are only 100 admits in the major, not 150 as you said.

    Voice, dance, and performance studies people can audition for MT as well. There's usually 2 or 3 of them who get in, but none did this year. You can also re-audition as a sophomore if you don't get in as a freshman.

    People who don't get into the program are still very much a part of the MT community. The only thing non-MT people absolutely absolutely cannot do are the private voice lessons. Most of our other classes are also supposed to be certificate-exclusive, but in reality they're flexible. There's usually a few kids every year who work their ass off and beg to get into all of these classes, usually with success.

    Non-MT people also do get cast in shows without bias!

    Hope that helps.
    edited March 26
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  • personhere123personhere123 3 replies0 threads New Member
    edited March 26
    I should also say that I auditioned for and got into many BFA programs. But Northwestern, in my eyes, is 100000000000% better––you get to explore so many other things you never would've thought you'd love, inside and outside of theatre.
    edited March 26
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  • personhere123personhere123 3 replies0 threads New Member
    edited March 26
    FInal thing: I applied to BU too. Don't fall for McCaela's info session speech. It's poignant, memorable, and 100% rehearsed. Almost made me want to go before I found this out.
    edited March 26
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  • DivaStageMomDivaStageMom 231 replies1 threads Junior Member
    @personhere123 - we did a lot of nfo sessions and I have to imagine everyone's speech is fairly rehearsed. My D also auditioned with MCCaela and they had a very nice conversation in the room as well. Honestly, a lot of people know her from Arts Bridge etc.. and I have heard nothing but positive things - but you are entitled to your opinion.

    Unfortunately, NU is a school we didn't visit and since it is non-audition its hard to get a vibe. In a normal year, we would do an accepted students' day - but this is far from a normal year!

    Anyway, that's why I started this thread - and I appreciate your input - Thank you for sharing!!
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