Stay true to your course with a degree in the performing arts from Northern Vermont University.

North is action. Creation. Heart. Our creative and supportive community of performing arts students and faculty will help you find your direction on the stage and beyond as you strengthen your foundation and hone your skills. 

Whether your passion is music, dance, theater, or vocal and instrumental performance, we provide an energizing, high-impact professional training ground. You’ll enhance your skills as a performer in our small classes, which provide individualized faculty attention and excellent performance facilities in which to learn and grow. With opportunities to perform and work on productions early on, you’ll gain the technical and artistic skills you need to make your impact while you’re here and after you graduate.   

Northern Vermont University offers degrees in the following performing arts areas:

  • Music, B.A.
  • Music Education, B.M.E.
  • Musical Theater, B.A.
  • Theater and Drama, B.A.
  • Technical Theater, A.A. 

Music, B.A. (Johnson)

In our music program, you’ll receive a well-rounded education to prepare you with skills that are more marketable. No matter which concentration you choose, you’ll take courses in music theory, orchestration and arranging, ear training, sight reading, music history—and everyone sings and plays the piano to put theory into practice. 

Some concentrations require a senior recital, but performance opportunities are available no matter which track you pursue.  

As you compose, improvise, and develop your instrument, you’ll gain valuable experience playing for an audience of your peers at Friday performance labs, where students support each other’s progress. In master performance labs, faculty will give feedback to guide you in building your skills and preparing for your career. Our students succeed in a variety of related careers, including composing, conducting, performing, and teaching.  
 

View B.A. in Music Degree Requirements

You’ll focus your degree by choosing a concentration within the major. We offer: 

Links will take you to the current Johnson State academic catalog. Johnson State College and Lyndon State College will become Northern Vermont University on July 1, 2018.

Music Education, B.M.E. (Johnson)

 
Make your impact felt by sharing your love of music as an educator. The Bachelor of Music Education degree program prepares you for Vermont licensure endorsement to teach music in grades pre-K through 12. You’ll get a foundation in music fundamentals and current education practices as well as solid hands-on experience in instrumental, choral, and general music methods.

We offer other opportunities for you to build the skills, technical accuracy, and high-impact performance ability you need to begin your career. You can join our Concert Band, Funk-Fusion Ensemble, and other campus instrumental groups, which give concerts at NVU-Johnson each semester. Or you can develop your voice in one of our choral groups, which perform on and off campus each year. Our chorale is scheduled to tour in Estonia, Finland, and Latvia in 2018.

Our programs have prepared graduates to excel as teachers, conductors, and music librarians and in orchestras, ensembles, and choral groups, among other occupations and fields.

View B.M.E. in Music Education Degree Requirements

Link will take you to the current Johnson State academic catalog. Johnson State College and Lyndon State College will become Northern Vermont University on July 1, 2018.

Musical Theater, B.A. (Johnson)

In this program, you’ll build the wide-ranging skills in theater, music, and dance you need to be competitive in the market, which has grown in New England in recent years. The experience you’ll gain in an internship will strengthen your skill set even more. Through training in voice, acting, movement, and dance, you’ll grow skilled as an artist and performer as you’re mentored by faculty who are professional performers themselves. In our program, you’ll learn about all aspects of musical theater to become a well-rounded professional: designing costumes, designing and building sets, promoting performances, managing the front office, and learning about lighting and stage blocking. In addition to productions, performances, and recitals, you’ll master the business side of the art, too, including communication and how to conduct yourself in interviews and auditions. Our graduates are prepared to pursue careers in a wide range of —fields from theater, television, movies, and radio to education and video production.

View B.A. in Musical Theater Degree Requirements

Link will take you to the current Johnson State academic catalog. Johnson State College and Lyndon State College will become Northern Vermont University on July 1, 2018.

Theater and Drama, B.A. (Johnson)

If you’re all about the stage, you’ll learn all about the stage through hands-on training as you develop skills in set design, lighting, blocking, lines, scripts, and other aspects of theater. The 500-seat Dibden Theater at Dibden Center for the Arts on campus will be the main “classroom” for your immersion in acting, directing, design, and management. You will get a valuable foundation in theater with courses in literature, voice, Shakespeare, theater history, and advanced dramatic literature. In Dibden Theater, you’ll call the shots and run the show—writing and directing your own play, designing and building a set, managing the front office, preparing the program, and promoting the performance. Your senior capstone courses will give you even more experience in the field to help you stand out. In one, you’ll build your portfolio by designing and completing a project. In the other course, you will master practical parts of the theater world, including audition preparation, resume and portfolio creation, and interviewing for jobs. By learning every aspect of theater productions, you’ll have highly marketable skills and a competitive advantage when you start your career. Students also can pursue teaching endorsement in pre-K through 12 theater arts education by meeting NVU-Johnson's teacher-education requirements and completing related coursework.

View B.A. in Theater and Drama Degree Requirements

Link will take you to the current Johnson State academic catalog. Johnson State College and Lyndon State College will become Northern Vermont University on July 1, 2018.

Technical Theater, A.A. (Johnson)

When it comes to a live performance, what the audience sees on stage is only a small part of the picture. If you enjoy the behind-the-scenes work that makes live productions possible, the two-year Technical Theater program is for you. You’ll master the mechanics of the stage, learning essential backstage details as well as stagecraft, lighting and design, set carpentry, music and audio engineering, production and house management, and more. An internship is required as well.

View A.A. in Technical Degree Requirements

Link will take you to the current Johnson State academic catalog. Johnson State College and Lyndon State College will become Northern Vermont University on July 1, 2018.

Performing Arts Minors

Both our Johnson and Lyndon campuses offer minors in the performing arts. Links will take you to the current catalog for each campus.