In our first ever "College Week," The Ensemblist is celebrating the myriad of ways aspiring theatre artists receive an education in the arts. Today, we hear from Caleb James Grochalski from Syracuse University.
I come from Pittsburgh, PA, and I am a Junior BFA Musical Theatre major here at SU. One of our professors said in an interview, “our graduates are sui generis (a latin word meaning ‘of its own kind’).” I can’t think of a phrase better to sum up the people that inhabit the SU Drama building. I love going into a classroom or rehearsal and being greeted by the most individual, passionate, and talented people I have ever met. Syracuse doesn’t have a “type” they look for in potential students or a “mold” they want everyone to fit when they leave. The faculty is merely here to guide us and give us the tools we need to become the best we can be as individuals. Everyone from the drapers in the costume shop, to our professors, to the seniors about to leave us wholeheartedly wants to be where they are, sharing their knowledge and nurturing their passion for theatre and art.
Aside from the people, my favorite part about SU Drama (and why I chose this program) is the direct relationship we have with Syracuse’s Professional LORT Rep Theatre, Syracuse Stage. This allows the students to work in the classroom and on stage with professional Equity actors, directors, and designers from all over the world in full-scale regional productions. Not to mention, having a main stage show co-produced with the Stage allows us (students) to work with these Equity actors and professional creative teams in a long-running production (and racking up those EMC points doesn’t hurt). Not too many other college programs can say they have a direct affiliation with a professional Equity theatre, let alone share the same facilities year-round.
Listen to our episodes on college theatre programs here.