The Juilliard School Welcomes Inaugural Class of New M.F.A. in Drama Program This Fall 2012


Eight Graduate Actors Will be Entering the World-Renowned Drama Division at Juilliard

Start Date

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Press Release Images

Noel Coward's Hay Fever, December 2011 (Photo by Jessica Katz)
Noel Coward's Hay Fever, December 2011 (Photo by Jessica Katz)


The Juilliard School welcomes the inaugural class of its new Master of Fine Arts in Drama program this Fall 2012. Eight graduate actors have been accepted into the highly selective program and will begin classes this September. Juilliard’s M.F.A. in Drama is a four-year conservatory program in actor training providing the tools necessary to meet the demands of an ever-evolving performing arts career and preparing young artists to become versatile and dynamic leaders in their field. The M.F.A program joins Juilliard’s four-year B.F.A. program, headed by James Houghton, the Richard Rodgers Director of the Drama Division.

Students in the graduate program will participate in advanced courses in addition to working side by side with undergraduates in certain skill sets and in performance. The final year of the M.F.A. program is dedicated to performance and other opportunities creating a bridge to the profession. The School recently announced the creation of Juilliard Drama Division’s Professional Studio, hosted by Signature Theatre Company, where Mr. Houghton is Founding Artistic Director. The Professional Studio will bring Juilliard’s undergraduate and graduate students together for professional workshops, rehearsals, and performances in Signature’s new Frank Gehry-designed home, The Pershing Square Signature Center in the heart of New York City’s Theater District. Juilliard events will take place at The Studio Theatre, a new 99-seat, state-of-the-art rehearsal and performance space in the Center.

Juilliard’s Drama Division recently announced its new season of productions featuring its 4th-year actors in the B.F.A. program. Performances are free and open to the public and take place in the Stephanie P. McClelland Drama Theater at Juilliard (155 West 65th Street, 4th Floor). The 2012-2013 season includes three fully-staged productions and three plays in rotation as part of its repertory month, February 2013. The season features Juilliard’s Lila Wallace Acheson Playwrights Program alumnus Stephen Belber’s McReele (October 17-21, 2012), directed by Sam Buntrock; Sarah Ruhl’s The Clean House (November 8-12, 2012), directed by Marcela Lorca; and Martin McDonagh’s The Cripple of Inishmaan (December 6-10, 2012), directed by Pam Berlin. The 4th-year repertory in February 2013 includes: William in Transit, short plays by Tennessee Williams, written between 1943 and 1973, directed by Jonathan Rosenberg; Suzan-Lori Parks’ Topdog/Underdog, which won the 2004 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2005, directed by Erica Schmidt; and William Shakespeare’s Pericles, directed by Juilliard alumnus Orlando Pabotoy. Free tickets will be available to the public for each production, two weeks prior to the opening date of each show, and a wait list for each performance begins one hour prior to the start of the show. For more information on the new season, go to www.juilliard.edu.

For further information on Juilliard’s Drama Division and its new M.F.A. in Drama program, please visit www.juilliard.edu/drama.

About Juilliard’s Drama Division

Juilliard’s Drama Division, co-founded in 1968 by John Houseman and Michel St. Denis, offers a four-year B.F.A. in Drama, an undergraduate Diploma, and beginning this Fall, a new M.F.A. in Drama program. In its 44-year history, the Drama Division has developed the talents of some of our most distinguished artists of stage and screen; they work across the country and internationally, acting, directing, writing, and teaching. Under the current leadership of Richard Rodgers Director of the Drama Division, James Houghton, the Juilliard Drama Division continues to uphold the best traditions of classical training and repertory while making the creation of new work one of the cornerstones of the program.

Among the celebrated alumni of Juilliard’s Drama Division are Christine Baranski, Viola Davis, Kelsey Grammer, William Hurt, Kevin Kline, Laura Linney, Patti LuPone, Mandy Patinkin, Kevin Spacey, and Robin Williams, and recent alumni include Jessica Chastain, Adam Driver, Nelsan Ellis, Anthony Mackie, Carrie Preston,
Benjamin Walker, and Rutina Wesley.

About The Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program

The Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program, created in 1993, has been led by Marsha Norman and Christopher Durang since 1994. Other esteemed playwrights who have led Juilliard’s up-and-coming writers include John Guare and Terrence McNally, who co-created the program with Drama Division Director Michael Kahn, as well as Jon Robin Baitz and Romulus Linney. The program is going into its 19th season and offers one-year, tuition-free, graduate level fellowships to four to five new writers each year.

Alumni of the Playwrights Program include David Lindsay-Abaire, who received the Pulitzer Prize for Rabbit Hole in 2007 and David Auburn, who received the Pulitzer Prize for Proof in 2001. Other notable alumni recognition includes Guggenheim Fellow, Steinberg Playwright and Whiting Writers’ Award winner, Bathsheba Doran; Olivier Award and Susan Smith Blackburn Award recipient, Katori Hall; Obie Award winner Sam Hunter; Helen Merrill and Lilly Awards winner, Deborah Zoe Laufer; and Pulitzer Prize finalist and recipient of the Benjamin H. Danks Award in Drama from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Adam Rapp.