North Central College - Naperville, IL


Why choose theatre at North Central College?

You’ll study with faculty who include accomplished actors working in major Chicago venues. These professor/performers will share their experiences—as well as their professional connections—with you. And because North Central has huge opportunities but small classes, you’ll have plenty of chances to act, sing and dance; direct shows; master lighting design and other technical crafts; and even write and produce your own plays and musicals. Maybe you'll choose to concentrate your studies in devising, dramaturgy and community engagement. Whether you want to shine onstage or backstage, North Central is the place to be.

You can also:

  • Attend workshops and master classes with luminaries like Jane Alderman, Matt Miller, Stephen Louis Grush and Sheri Sanders.
  • Concentrate in performance, design, technical theatre, directing or play creation.
  • Audition for well-known agents and casting directors (including Paskal Rudnicke Casting, Claire Simon Casting and Stewart Talent) as part of the Senior Showcase.
  • Direct a show of your choice in our state-of-the-art facilities as part of our Student Director Series.

To learn more about experiences and opportunities here at North Central College as a theatre major, click here.


Five North Central College alumni who reflect the high aspirations of North Central graduates are recognized and honored at Homecoming as outstanding alumni.
North Central College students showcase their talents in the musical comedy by Dolly Parton based on the 1970s hit movie “9 to 5.”
Assistant Professor of Theatre Jermaine Hill
North Central College’s theatre faculty set the stage for students’ futures with advancement of curriculum and experience from their own professional careers.



  • Chicago Shakespeare Theatre on Navy Pier
  • The Other Theatre Company
  • Goodman Theater, Chicago
  • American Theatre Company


Recent graduates in theatre have worked at:

  • Chicago Shakespeare Theater at Navy Pier
  • Steppenwolf, Chicago
  • Goodman Theatre, Chicago
  • Peninsula Players Theatre, Door County, WI
  • Montana Shakespeare, Jefferson City, MT
  • Timber Lake Playhouse, Mt. Carroll, IL
  • First Folio Shakespeare, Clarendon Hills, IL
  • Drury Lane, Oak Brook, IL
  • American Theatre Company, Chicago
  • Polarity Ensemble Theatre, Chicago
  • Royal Caribbean Productions
  • Theatre Royal Haymarket, London, UK
  • Theatre At The Center, Munster, IN
  • Norwegian Cruise Lines
  • Metropolis Theatre, Arlington Heights, IL
Organizational Communication & Theatre major, Dance minor

When Rebecca was awarded a North Central transfer scholarship, she knew she was meant to be part of the North Central family.  

Rebecca’s love of working with others led her to the field of communication, but she quickly narrowed it down to organizational communication.

“Communication can be such a broad major at some colleges, but the separation of different communication majors at North Central helped me understand which route I wanted to study and how I wanted to use my degree.”

Because of the writing and communication skills Rebecca gained in her classes, she feels prepared to excel in any setting, whether at a small nonprofit organization or large corporation. The skills she...


When 6-year-old Savanna put on a dress and performed her own version of “Cinderella,” she fell in love with theatre. During her time at North Central, her love of acting has blended with her passion for social justice.

“Theatre is visceral. It's compelling, it’s emotionally and artistically charged, and it’s a unique arena for exploring societal inequalities,” she says.

To prepare for a career in theatre, Savanna performed in three professional productions: “Julius Caesar” at Chicago Shakespeare Theater and “Richard III” and “Inherit the Wind” at Oak Park Festival Theatre. She even completed an independent study where she wrote, produced and performed a full-length, one-woman show, “...

Theatre and Psychology major

“I was fortunate to see ‘The Laramie Project’ before my first year. I was absolutely floored by the talent on that stage and knew I had to be part of it!”

Hannah majored in theatre and psychology and enjoyed the liberal arts advantage. “North Central's theatre program is not a conservatory and I feel it’s better that way. You take core theatre classes, but also science, foreign language and more. You become well-rounded and a better actor.”

Senior Showcase, another feature of North Central’s theatre program, “allows you to perform for many of Chicago’s best casting directors and talent agents. This exposure is unbelievably valuable,” she says.

Hannah feels her studies at North Central have...

Theatre major

Emily loves theatre—particularly the behind-the-scenes parts of it.

The aspiring stage manager has taken advantage of numerous opportunities at North Central and in Chicago, expanding her knowledge and gaining experience while also having a blast.

“We have so many amazing opportunities in the theatre department,” Emily says. “Every year, we bring in a guest director—someone who’s prominent in the Chicago theatre world. We develop connections with the city and working artists.

“This fall, I was able to stage manage for [Chicago actor and theatre instructor] Ted Hoerl for a second time, which is absolutely amazing for a college student. I have a reference and someone I can work with in the...

Theatre major

Will began making an impression on Chicago audiences before he graduated. As a student he played Scripps in the critically acclaimed drama The History Boys, appearing in six shows a week. (This TimeLine Theatre show sold out for 25 weeks before sweeping the Equity Jeff Awards.) While attending North Central Will was also cast as Claudio in Much Ado About Nothing at First Folio Theatre in Oak Brook, IL. Since graduating he has continued to build on his early successes, acting with Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago Children’s Theatre and Victory Gardens Theatre and the Goodman Theatre.

In addition to his growing list of acting credits, Will was among Chicago Tribune’s theater critic...