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What a theatre major REALLY needs in his/her dorm room

chrissybluchrissyblu 672 replies37 threads Member
edited June 2012 in Theater/Drama Majors
My D and I were discussing what she needs to bring to her dorm. At UCLA, no coffee pots or microwaves are allowed. But refrigerators are allowed.

I was thinking that there may be some things that theatre majors shouldn't leave home without... like the accumulation of plays she has on the shelves of her room. And tons of yoga attire for movement classes, etc. Maybe tape recorders for learning lines....

I'm interested in getting input on what general as well as specific things theatre majors may need in that dorm room.

Thoughts?
edited June 2012
33 replies
Post edited by chrissyblu on
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Replies to: What a theatre major REALLY needs in his/her dorm room

  • NotMamaRoseNotMamaRose 3973 replies117 threads Senior Member
    I honestly don't think theater majors need anything that is really different from what other majors need: regular stuff for living (microwave, etc.), books, bathroom stuff, clothing, etc. Musical theater majors usually want to have a small electronic keyboard for their music theory and to accompany themselves, but other than that, I can't think of anything different. :)
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  • datrippdatripp 97 replies52 threads Junior Member
    How about an ATM?
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  • NJTheatreMOMNJTheatreMOM 3629 replies44 threads Senior Member
    LOL, datripp!!

    Actually, what NMR said about the keyboard is helpful. I never thought about that. My son began taking piano lessons about two years ago. He practices most days and uses the keyboard in conjunction with singing practice and teaching himself MT songs.

    Given that he will be a freshman student in an acting program, I really can't imagine him doing a whole lot of the above while he is away at BU. Anyway, colleges usually have pianos sitting around that students have easy access to.....don't they??
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  • HoosierMom2012HoosierMom2012 235 replies3 threads Junior Member
    Since my D does have to perform a lot of monologues, yes she has quite a collection of plays. Since she does voice she also uses sheet music and as NMR said a small keyboard and a voice recorder. And she takes dance so all the dance stuff. She auditions regularly so she has audition dresses and heels.

    Not specific to theatre majors we invested in this trunk. I read that the #1 problem in colleges is theft. She locks up her DVDs, jewelry, cameras, etc in it when she isn't in her room or goes away on holidays. At the minimum watch the video on this page that points out the construction and lock and key flaws that make other foot lockers practically useless.

    https://www.cnmfg.com/college/product.php?pc_product_id=2
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  • skipsmomskipsmom 174 replies11 threads Junior Member
    Gosh, hoosiermom, I love that trunk! Our kids used to destroy one trunk each every year at summer camp... that one would have actually been cheaper in the long run. Thanks for posting the link, that sounds like it might be a good idea for our daughter when she moves out of her college apt.
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  • klriklri 113 replies1 threads Junior Member
    Considering most drama/theater majors read and collect lots and lots of plays, additional bookshelves are needed. That is the first thing that came to mind for me. We bought the metal type that are like the erector sets the kids had when they were little. What is great about these is the girls can hang their high heels through the holes for additional shoe storage.
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  • MamaBearMamaBear 131 replies22 threads Junior Member
    Considering that the dorm rooms that we have seen at UCLA are ridiculously tiny I would say bring only what is absolutely necessary!! Any space saving techniques will be helpful...time to start looking around The Container Store!
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  • fishbowlfreshmanfishbowlfreshman 807 replies20 threads Member
    I don't have much to add here except that most schools will let you know sometime during the summer what you'll need as far as movement and rehearsal wear. If they don't, ask. Some might even recommend a particular type of character shoe so hold off on that until the time comes. Just make sure you buy a lot of whatever it is since there won't be much time for washing and they'll get ripe pretty quick! Definitely take your plays and any notebooks of monologues and scenes you've compiled. I have all mine on my laptop, but there's just something about having them right there in hardcopy that's comforting ... although a bit cluttering at times. Extra shelves and plastic egg crates that'll fit under your bed are also a plus if you have room.
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  • IanJosephIanJoseph 75 replies8 threads Junior Member
    I'm not sure if anyone wants to take me up on this, but I'll offer it up far anyone who wants to private message me.
    I'm an IBM employee. We have an employee discount available to us which we can offer to anyone who wants to take advantage of it on the employee website. IBM sold the PC and laptop business to Lenovo and so these are now Lenovo, not IBM, branded products.
    You may find the same products cheaper through your university student program.
    I personally receive no renumeration, commission or any type of kickback if you happen to buy something through the program.
    All you need to access the program is my last name and my employee ID number.
    If I have broken any forum rules by offering this up then please have this post removed. It is not my intention to personally sell anything or personally profit in any way, just trying to offer forum members the discounts I enjoy.
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  • BrownEyesBrownEyes 122 replies8 threads Junior Member
    These are small items, along the line of school supplies and they may sound obvious, but here goes: non-glare sheet protectors, even for Acting students. They're a great way to organize monologues, scenes and sheet music into loose leaf notebooks and keep them for future reference after the student is done working on them in class. I suggest buying the largest package of sheet protectors you can find (generally 500 to a box) and leaving it with your student. You'd be surprised how many sheet protectors Acting and MT students can go through. Just make sure they're the heavy duty, non-glare kind. Also, plenty of pencils (to mark monologues, scenes and sheet music), and a pencil sharpener if your kid prefers traditional pencils to the mechanical kind. A small, quality paper cutter (to trim head shots, if necessary), and a 3-hole punch (not the hand-held kind), because Acting and MT students get lots of hand-outs. PLUS, those vinyl (not paper) 2 pocket folders are especially sturdy and will generally come in handy for the same reason. I wouldn't overload on school supplies until your student actually arrives in college because some classes may provide their own lists, but I've found that the items mentioned above are often overlooked, and they're generally not available in the college bookstore (except the pencils!). Oh, and don't forget the iHome or similar iPod-charging alarm clock, and a recording device for the iPod if you can find one. PLUS, a few of those stand-up magazine racks to hold plays, music books, loose-leaf notebooks, etc. During the summer, stores like Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters often have those to match lamps, bedding, notebooks and other dorm stuff. Have fun, and hope this helps!
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  • BrownEyesBrownEyes 122 replies8 threads Junior Member
    Hi again ... all of my suggestions are based on our experience with P/A boarding school, but I think they also apply to Acting/MT students in college programs: students may find it handy to have their neutral black clothing, dance-wear and footwear segregated from street clothes rather than packed into the same drawers and closets, to facilitate quick changes for class or rehearsal. We found it helpful at the beginning of the semester (i.e., before move-in day), to organize my kid's neutral blacks, dance clothes & shoes into those clear, Sterilite containers that fit under the bed. That way, those much-needed items are always handy, they don't get mixed-in with the kid's other clothes/shoes, and they can be easily put away after class or laundry, etc. so fewer items are lost. Those Sterilite containers are also handy for packing-up the car for move-in day, as they hold a lot and can be easily stacked. Again, I hope these suggestions help!
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  • NotMamaRoseNotMamaRose 3973 replies117 threads Senior Member
    IanJoseph, that's a very nice offer. My kid is already fixed with a Mac, but I am sure others may want to take advantage of your generous offer.
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  • MichaelNKatMichaelNKat 4250 replies58 threads Senior Member
    How about a personal steamer and one of those Nelliepot squeeze bottles for sinus rinsing. Real popular with the MT students to care for their throats and vocal apparatus and to deal with the inevitable head colds. Acting students are constantly putting great demands on their voices too, so these may be "specialty" items that you want have on hand.
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  • chrissybluchrissyblu 672 replies37 threads Member
    thanks for all the great suggestions. I had a trunk just like that for when I went to Cal, and it is still in my closet, although now it holds memories. My D and I were thinking of a small tape digital recorder to add to the list, because it helps her run lines.

    The yoga attire is a great idea. She has Tai Chi and Ballet every day. Who has the best and cheapest?
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  • alwaysamomalwaysamom 12281 replies217 threads Senior Member
    The trunk looks great but a word of warning. Many dorm rooms out there will have no space to store a trunk like that. So I'd suggest you hold off on purchasing one until you can confirm the size of your dorm room (if that's possible prior to move in day).

    chrissy, I'm curious what your D does with a recorder. I know lots and lots of actors and have never known one to use a recorder. Am curious! :)
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  • IanJosephIanJoseph 75 replies8 threads Junior Member
    My D used a recorder when preparing a monologue that used a foreign accent. She recorded family friends who were from the country and so could listren to their accent while preparing the monologue. This helped her get the accent right.
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  • chrissybluchrissyblu 672 replies37 threads Member
    When my D was in Urinetown, the recorder was mandatory. They had to record their sessions with the musical director to learn the music. Also, when she is working through lines, and has no one to do them with her, she records the other actors' lines.
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  • alwaysamomalwaysamom 12281 replies217 threads Senior Member
    Certainly, a recorder is necessary and commonly used for learning the music for a show. My question was really addressing the need for straight plays. Interesting that your D learns her lines that way with a recorder. I've never known anyone to do that, but I guess whatever works!
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  • NJTheatreMOMNJTheatreMOM 3629 replies44 threads Senior Member
    When my son was in "Lion in Winter" at a community theatre (playing Prince John, with big painted-on zits), the cast recorded a read-though of the script and distributed copies of the recording to everybody to use to learn their lines.
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  • AngieAAngieA 110 replies4 threads Junior Member
    D is an MT major and a voice recorder is a must for recording voice lessons. D also uses it to practice monologue material, learn lines and vocal warm ups.
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