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  Mason Gross School of the Arts 2020-2022 Graduate Programs in Theater Arts Information and Regulations for All Graduate Theater Arts Students Casting and Production Assignment Policy  

Casting and Production Assignment Policy


Students must accept roles in which they are cast and production positions that are assigned to them.

The theater program at Mason Gross School of the Arts prepares students for the wide variety of roles they will encounter in the professional entertainment industry: theater, film, and television. The goal is to develop highly skilled and versatile theater artists.

Theater, film, and television encompass the full range of human behavior and experience and there will be times when students may be asked to perform in roles or work on plays that may contain language and describe situations distasteful to some. Students in the Mason Gross School of the Arts Department of Theater Arts must be able to portray characters and work on plays even if the values and beliefs therein may be at significant odds with their own.

Students in the program are not at liberty to choose the assignments or roles they are cast in according to how congruent they are with their personal belief systems. In addition, altering a text or changing the language of a play in order to sanitize language or character behavior creates an inauthentic performance of the play that falsifies the artistic integrity of the playwright's work. It also cheats the audience who came to see a legitimate performance of the play. Altering the text of a play is unacceptable in our program and will result in a failing grade for the work in question. Failure of any core course can result in artistic dismissal.

Actors are required to attend all auditions for which they are called. If a student wishes to audition for a role for which they have not been called, the student may request an audition. At the discretion of the chair/vice chair, the student may be granted the audition.

All issues of nudity or smoking in rehearsals and performances (including special effects) must be approved by the Executive Committee in order to make sure departmental policies are followed. The stage manager or director prepares a photocopy of the relevant pages in the script, highlighting necessary nudity or smoking and provides the Executive Committee with a copy as well as an explanation of the request.

Nudity during a performance may be permitted if it is essential to the logic of the play, but it may not be gratuitous. Actors cannot be required to perform in the nude. During casting, only the student's primary acting teacher may discuss performing in the nude with the actor. The director cannot have this conversation with the actor. The chair/vice chair is the final arbiter of taste and adherence to the Executive Committee policy. An actor's refusal to perform nude will be individually negotiated by the primary acting teacher and will not affect the student's status in the program. If nudity is to occur, the department will post a sign in the theater lobby and box office window so that patrons with sensitivity to nudity may be apprised.

Smoking during a performance is only permitted within strict limits if it is essential to the action and logic of the play. Electronic cigarettes will be used wherever possible and a sign will be posted for the audience advising of their use. If real smoking is to occur, the department will post a sign in the theater lobby and box office window so that patrons with sensitivity to smoking may apprised. If smoking is approved the ventilation systems will be run during those scenes and during intermissions to dilute the concentration of smoke in the atmosphere. This may cause noise which would affect the audience's ability to hear some of the scene. An actor's refusal to smoke onstage will be individually negotiated by the primary acting teacher and will not affect the student's status in the program. Nontobacco products will be used if the materials are lit.

 
For additional information, contact RU-info at 848-445-info (4636) or colonelhenry.rutgers.edu.
Comments and corrections to: Campus Information Services.

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