Performing and Applied Arts

The Department of Performing and Applied Arts (PART) provides an experiential program that focuses on the academic knowledge and creative expression used in performance and applied arts.

PART is an interdisciplinary program focusing on the intersections of music, theatre, dance, design, and production. Students who major in PART will receive a well-rounded education intended to prepare them to be interdisciplinary artists unafraid to take risks and make change.

Applied art is any form of art created with a specific practical purpose in mind. In other words ‘applied arts’ involves the use of artistic practices for purposes outside of aesthetic appreciation. Examples of applied arts include the use of theatre, dance, or music in therapeutic settings; performance approaches used to assist communities to discuss and role play solutions to local or regional problems; and even performance used in museums, schools, and standardized patient training for medical schools. Our program recognizes the value of the arts for the betterment of education, discourse, as well as aesthetics.

Similarly, applied arts refers to the design and creation process used across various disciplines. For example, the design processes for costume and scenic design are transferable to fashion and interior design; carpentry skills developed by working in the scene shop are also used in the construction of furniture, housing, and cabinetry; or the care and tuning of instruments is in fact, a career of its own. PART believes a well rounded student has an understanding of the intersections between performance and the practical ways artistic skills are applied.

Applied Arts also refers to “learning by doing”, a unique characteristic of Beloit’s approach to pedagogy. PART students will learn the theory and practice of collaboration and how to use artistic skills in cooperative environments from a multitude of perspectives. You will leave Beloit College able to speak across artistic disciplines for both aesthetic and practical purposes.

Graduates of our program are not only artists, but are also prepared to live as self-actualizing citizens and individuals. Our classes offer students (majors and non-majors alike) opportunities to think critically, create adventurously, and collaborate successfully. We empower students with knowledge and encourage the pursuit of excellence in all they do.

All courses, productions, ensembles, lessons, and work study opportunities are open to majors and non-majors, of all backgrounds and skill levels, and guide students to do the following:

  1. Connect skills, methods, and modes of knowledge across disciplines and apply them to new contexts.
  2. Develop and refine skills in such areas as performance and production, text, sound, and movement analysis, public speaking, design, and project management.
  3. Build communities in our classes and ensembles.
  4. Interrogate our positions within the changing conventions of performance and production studies.
  5. Empower students to creatively respond to local and global social justice concerns.


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performing and applied arts

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