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  • Writer's pictureBroadway Beat

"Let's Cut to the Chase": Musical Theatre Schools Introduce Degree in Musical Theatre Teaching

by Ziye Hu. @ziyehu.

NEW YORK, NY - Musical theatre conservatories nationwide announced today that, in an effort to stay relevant and adapt to the demands of an ever-changing artistic hellscape, they will be debuting a new undergraduate degree in Musical Theatre Teaching - effectively "cutting to the chase" in terms of where the students will likely end up anyway, the universities confirmed.

“Our school has been an industry leader in recent years,” said NYU Tisch School of the Arts Dean Jennifer Reed, unironically. “Having listened closely to the needs of our students while keeping our fingers firmly on the pulse of industry trends, we are thrilled to announce that our high-profile roster of theatre veterans will begin preparing students with all of the skills necessary to do what they, and thousands of others, are now doing.”

When asked for a course listing, Dean Reed shrugged and explained that it had not yet been finalized, as “this is a pilot program, and we will be experimenting with the curriculum.” Tuition will run at $75,000 a year.

Brian Tanner, a rising Carnegie Mellon sophomore in Musical Theatre (performance, that is) - and self-proclaimed twink - scratched his head over the new major.

“I mean, none of our teachers now have needed degrees to teach us; they’re all just out-of-work cashmere liberals with round glasses who happen to be friends with the head of our program,” noted Tanner. “For me, a more reliable pathway to having a successful musical theatre teaching career is to get cast in the ensemble of the next Newsies revival, then advertise masterclasses on my Instagram story.”

NYU Associate Dean Andrew Bautista defended the necessity of the new program.

“We plan to emphasize the importance of having a varied approach when it comes to teaching,” noted the program leader. “For instance, our first-year foundational course called ‘How to Talk to Students Who Are Not White’ will train our future teachers on how to provide vocal instruction and acting adjustments without making racist comments. The program will also provide unparalleled real-world experience, as all of our third-year students are expected to intern for a semester teaching the freshman class at AMDA.”

Admission requirements state that applicants must self-tape themselves slouching into a wooden armchair while spewing non-sequiturs, drinking black coffee out of that same stainless steel coffee tumbler literally every teacher has, and telling the person off-camera to “just do the song again and go deeper.”

At time of publication, the University of Michigan has also announced their own program for Musical Theatre Teaching, because, of course.


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