A letter from our CSUN Theatre Department Chair, Anamarie Dwyer...

Hola Theatre Majors and Minors

I pray that you are safe at home wherever that may be for you currently and that you are healthy. It has been a very challenging time that extended from days, into weeks, and now months coping with all the adjustments you and I had to make. We continue to be challenged by the ever-present threat of another wave. I want to take a few moments to update you on what is happening in the Department of Theatre and what we are doing to help ensure that you receive the best possible learning we can provide in our current COVID-19 environment.

Together we (students, faculty and staff) had to face the uncertainty of how the virus would impact our health, work, social communities, our very lives. Those first weeks, I didn’t have time to try to manage this trauma as “Anamarie,” I had to stay in my “Chair of the Theatre Department” role to facilitate faculty and student needs, administrative and curricular needs and it was daunting. Through that time, I had the privilege of witnessing your faculty work diligently, under historic circumstances, pushing past their own personal struggles to provide instruction and curriculum; students needed to earn a grade at the end of the semester, students were expecting to share their artistic endeavors, students were expecting to complete their degree and graduate! The Spring 2020 semester did not look as we had envisioned in January, but we made it through. Faculty shared with me how resilient and creative you were as you figured how to accomplish assignments and learning! Thank you for your efforts.

Throughout history, artists have been the ones who express and mirror society’s truth even if it is ugly, distressing, or most importantly challenging because artists are concerned with creating and our power is in creating, creating for change, creating for betterment. Across nations artists are coming together to innovate online teaching in the arts. Your faculty is coming together as artists and educators to innovate how to provide you with the very best we can so that you can succeed no matter what the “new normal” looks like. It’s all very exciting!

I know that you have many questions about Fall 2020. I don’t have all the answers, but I can relate how we are preparing for a virtual Fall 2020 semester. First, let’s not forget that these changes revolve around the issue of HEALTH, and not just sickness, but life and death. Secondly, let’s not forget that switching to virtual classes is temporary (I am nothing if not hopeful).

  • Faculty are spending their summer learning about online pedagogy, technology, participating in webinars, speaking with artists and colleagues across the nation and around the world about how to teach theatre virtually and seeking strategies for making virtual theatre meaningful and exciting.

  • We are re-thinking what production participation looks like in this environment and working on partnering with CTVA for technical and acting opportunities.

  • We are taking a close look at courses and considering how more presentation/performance project opportunities can happen there.

  • We petitioned for our activity courses to have some face-to-face time on campus. The CDC and CSU Protocol for social distancing was distributed and our long list of courses was cut down to 5 courses, and then one course. Right now, under review are our  

    productions—can students come together for production purposes? We don’t have an answer yet, but directors are moving forward with plans to film remotely and possibly on-campus in small groups if we are permitted.
  • We have submitted proposals for funding to purchase tripods, floor mics, body mics, over the ear mics, lighting, green screens, and webcams for faculty and students to check out and use on campus for filming monologues, 2-3 person scenes, etc., while following social distancing protocols.
  • The office staff is establishing processes to be available to welcome you back, answer questions, and point you to resources.
  • Technical staff will also be working to assist with a semester of virtual theatre making and exploring how we bring an audience to virtual performance projects. The technical staff will also be spending time maintaining lab spaces and theatre spaces in preparation for our eventual return to face-to-face interactions – what a celebration that will be!
  • The department drafted and posted a strong, action-oriented statement on Black Lives Matter that can be viewed on social media and the Department of Theatre webpage at Along with you we will continue to create transformative art that proclaims Black Lives Matter.

We are looking forward to seeing you in class, in rehearsal, and in performance. Classes and production will look different but the Department of Theatre remains committed to supporting and empowering the education and creative expression of all our students and colleagues. We will make theatre. We stand together to help move you forward, to move you “adelante.”

Adelante con cariño
Anamarie Dwyer signature

Anamarie Dwyer, Chair
Department of Theatre
Phone: 818.677.3086 | Fax: 818.677.2080

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A statement from the CSUN Theatre Department on the unjust murder of George Floyd, racism and their pledge to feature more Theatre creators and artists of color 

The CSUN Theatre Department joins the university campus and wider communities of the world in grief and outrage at the violence and needless murder of George Floyd.  We carry the pain of witnessing this violence repeated too often and the loss of so many others: Breonna Taylor, Tamir Rice, Ezell Ford, Michael Brown, Philando Castile, Atatiana Jefferson, Delrawn Small, Dominique Clayton, Jamar Clark, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, Sandra Bland, Freddie Gray, – who also cried out for breath………and many more wrongfully snuffed out. 

These people were unjustly killed by police and by the mechanisms of undeniable racism at all levels of our society.  From the overt aggressions of white supremacy to the seemingly invisible oppressions of institutional racism – including those within the arts - we must confront the inaction of those with power and privilege, to end racist practices at home, work and in our communities and schools, and to advocate for those that need protection and support.  

We in the Theatre Department recognize that substantive change does not come from issuing statements alone but from continually engaged reflection and action, and so we pledge first of all to LISTEN and then to ACT to ensure an environment that will not tolerate bigotry, oppression or unequal treatment.  We are committed to a process through which we examine how our program is constructed and maintained in ways that support or hinder access. We will ensure that our productions, curriculum, guest speakers and faculty feature Black creators and artists of color from all areas of Theatre. 

As artists and teachers we steadfastly seek to support and empower the creative expression of our Black students and colleagues as well as our students and colleagues of other ethnic and racial backgrounds. We continue to offer performance and production opportunities that provide an experience that will promote individual empowerment and expressions of self-worth and value.  We are committed to opposing hate and injustice, to supporting our students of color and to creating art with all of our students that fosters transformation and, through our creative process proclaims,


We invite the university to support us and our campus peers to join us as witnesses or participants in our work to inspire transformation.

BackStage Magazine ranked the CSUN Theatre Department as one of the top nine university programs in the nation that were "the most effective and offer a unique approach to the college-professional connection," noting the department is "ideally situated for finding internships in the Industry." 

The Department of Theatre is located in Nordhoff Hall on the southwest corner of the California State University, Northridge campus in suburban Los Angeles. 

The Department has 8 full time faculty, 15 part-time faculty, and 10 professional staff who serve over 250 undergraduate and graduate theatre majors.

The Department houses three theater spaces - the Campus Theatre, Little Theatre, and Experimental Theatre, and mounts eight productions during academic year. In the summer, the Department holds the Teenage Drama Workshop, a theatre training program for rising 7th -12th grade students.



Congratulations to the following students for their achievements at the 2020 KCATCF Region 8 Competition

Megan Broyles and Shiku Thuo
Acting Finalists

Kelli Tays
National Stage Management Fellowship Finalist 

Shyhiem Parker and Jasmine Ibrahem
Acting Finalists

Shiku Thuo
National Stage Management Fellowship Finalist
& Honorable Mention

Jenna Rico
Acting Semi-Finalist 

Lindsay Jenkins
Dramaturgy Finalist
& Honorable Mention 

Rob Murray
Acting Semi-Finalist 


Sebastion Guerrero
Acting Semi-Finalist 


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