Ithaca College’s Department of Theater Arts comes under the direction of the School of Music


ITHACA, NY — Ithaca College will be moving its popular performing arts department from its current location at the School of Humanities and Sciences at Ithaca College School of Music.

The decision was announced at an all faculty and staff meeting in May, IC spokesperson Dave Maley confirmed to the Ithaca Voice, after administrators discussed it with department staff, Maley said.

The change will be implemented in the 2022-2023 academic year, and the time until then will be used to plan the transition. Although asked, Maley did not say if the move would impact someone’s employment status.

Ithaca College was originally founded as a conservatory of music and its music school still holds pride of place nationwide. Currently, there are over 100 faculty and staff listed in the School of Music and over 40 listed in the Department of Theater Arts.

“The college has been exploring potential changes for several years, in order to take advantage of synergies between programs,” Maley said. “The Department of Theater Arts has more in common with the School of Music than with the School of Humanities, where it is currently located.”

Maley further pointed out that music and the performing arts are both performance-based programs, requiring an audition process to be accepted. This requirement does not exist for any other department of the Faculty of Human Sciences.

In his comments at the staff meeting, IC Provost La Jerne Terry Cornish said the decision was motivated to explore the different ways the arts of theater and music would be compatible. She did not mention whether the move was related to the controversial initiative to prioritize the school’s academic program during the meeting, and Maley did not elaborate in his statement to the school. Voice That is.

The school touted the APP as a way to streamline the college and ensure its long-term sustainability, but it received backlash due to its large reductions in faculty.

Cornish said the Department of the Performing Arts could “in theory” become its own school in the future. First, however, it will go under the aegis of the School of Music.

“We are going to move the theater of health and safety to music to explore the synergies between these schools,” Cornish said at the meeting. “I think we have an opportunity, between music and theater, that we really haven’t fully realized, and I think it’s time for us to fully realize it.”

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