Category: Musical Theatre

UCO Musical Theatre Receives National Recognition

“Those of us who have witnessed the polished professionalism of our productions will not be surprised by this recognition.”

– Steve Hansen, Dean

College of Fine Arts and Design

The University of Central Oklahoma has again been recognized on the national stage for the outstanding quality of the Musical Theatre Program. The online theatre community “Performer Stuff” recently featured UCO in their article series “The Top College Theatre Programs You Might Not Know, but Should.” UCO Musical Theatre has previously been recognized as one of the top 10 programs in the nation by “OnStage Blog” in both 2017 and again in 2018.

“Those of us who have witnessed the polished professionalism of our productions will not be surprised by this recognition,” said Steven Hansen, M.F.A., dean of the UCO College of Fine Arts and Design. “As accolades continue to pour in, we will soon lose our moniker as a “hidden” gem, and take our place in the forefront of nationally recognized Musical Theatre programs.”

“Performer Stuff” is a national online community created as a resource for performers, educators and industry professionals. Their feature article lists several reasons for awarding UCO Musical Theatre a top nod this year. Among them are specialized and rigorous training by leading arts professionals; regular collaborations with local professional companies that offer students professional credits with the Actor’s Equity Association Union as well as successful alumni who can be found throughout the professional performing arts world.

“We live in an area where Musical Theatre is prevalent,” said Greg White, Ph.D., head of the UCO Musical Theatre Division. “There are three competitive programs in the metro area alone while Texas only has three in the entire state.

“One thing that sets us apart from other programs is the incredible collaboration between different departments within the UCO College of Fine Arts and Design. Our students have the opportunity to work with our Dance Department to refine dance techniques or they can take advanced acting courses in the Theatre Arts Department while also working directly with our talented voice faculty in the School of Music.”

Faculty within the College of Fine Arts and Design also stay at the top of their craft as professionals working within their collective industries.

“I want to congratulate our amazing students, staff and faculty mentors across schools, divisions and departments who’s collaborative efforts alchemically combine to create gold,” Hansen added.

#CFADWorks: Erin Clemons

Backstage at “Hamilton: An American Musical,” UCO College of Fine Arts and Design alumna Erin Clemons finds a moment amid the whirlwind of rehearsals to share her journey since gradation.

After receiving her Bachelor of Music in Musical Theatre from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2011, Clemons moved to New York City to begin her career on Broadway. In “Les Misérables,” Clemons touched the hearts of thousands in the tragic role of lovelorn martyr, Éponine. Clemons also performed for audiences across America in the “Les Misérables 25th Anniversary U.S. National Tour” and as Janelle Woods in “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical First National Tour.”

Returning to the Broadway stage, Clemons is currently starring in “Hamilton: An American Musical.” This critically-acclaimed musical boasts hundreds of accolades, including 11 Tony Awards and the Pulitzer Prize in Drama. Clemons is a member of the ensemble, and she has also portrayed Angelica Schuyler, Eliza Hamilton, Peggy Schuyler and Maria Reynolds.

Clemons remembers UCO as an environment where she was able to hone her craft under the guidance of professionals that have evolved into lifelong friends and mentors. For tickets to see her performance in “Hamilton,” visit hamiltonmusical.com.