Performing and Visual Arts
Part of any university experience of quality is the cultural richness provided
by its performing and visual arts. Whether an enthusiastic novice or serious
pre-professional, we provide an enormous array of artistic choices. The
School of the Arts subscribes to a philosophy which seeks a balance between
theory and practice, and we are justifiably proud of the large number of
working artists among our faculty. Chicos reputation as an artistic center
in northern California is the result of the collective commitment by faculty,
alumni, administration, and student-artists to the highest standards in
every facet of the artistic experience. Though first-rate facilities help,
our large appreciative audiences know that quality in the arts resides
within the talent of the individual and the dedication of the ensemble.
The home of performance at Chico is the Performing Arts Center, which houses
the 500-seat Harlen Adams Theatre, the 200-seat Lawrence Wismer Theatre,
and the 200-seat Ruth Rowland-Taylor Recital Hall. The PAC also houses offices,
classrooms, and a large number of studios and rehearsal spaces. The theaters
are served by fully equipped scene and costume shops, as well as spacious
make-up and dressing facilities. All of our theatres including Chicos
1300-seat Laxson Auditorium possess state-of-the-art computerized lighting
systems. All musical events are professionally recorded and our recording
studio is the finest in the North State.
The university is home to four galleries with a wide range of exhibition
The University Gallery is located in Taylor Hall and features an exhibition
calendar of contemporary and historical art work, a biennial alumni show,
an annual student art show, and faculty exhibitions.
The BFA Gallery is tucked into Ayers Hall and features culminating shows
for students earning the Bachelor of Fine Arts.
The Janet Turner Print Museum on the mezzanine of Laxson Auditorium curates
seven exhibitions a year drawn from the collection of over 3,500 prints.
The National Print Competition is held every other year with print artists
from the U.S. and abroad.
The Humanities Center Gallery is located in Trinity Hall and presents an
eclectic exhibition calendar of alumni, faculty, and community artists.
Our scholarship program includes awards for first-time students and continuing
students. All are highly competitive and awarded on the basis of demonstrated
artistic ability. Consult the Departments of Art, Music, and Theatre Arts
for more information.
NORTH STATE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Truly a town/gown affair, the orchestra is a collection of the finest
instrumentalists from both the campus and the North State. The orchestras
season features world-class guest soloists, great standard repertoire,
and exciting premieres.
The University Band features students and community players presenting
a wide variety
of concert and pops music.
Wind Ensemble is a student group focusing on the best original band works
and high quality transcriptions.
Trios, quartets, and quintets perform the classical masters as well as
contemporary composers. Challenging and highly rewarding, these ensembles
feature woodwinds, brass, low brass, and a variety of other instrumental
Interested in Latin American music? Chicovana is an ensemble of singers
and instrumentalists dedicated to exploring and performing major Latin
American styles of music.
The University Chorus is 150 student and community voices specializing
in choral masterpieces.
The A Cappella Choir auditions student voices and focuses on a diverse
repertoire of exciting vocal music from the 17th to the 21st centuries.
Chamber Singers a select vocal ensemble focus on innovative chamber
choir literature that is varied in style and international in scope.
Gospel Choir is open to students and community singers and presents music
from the American Southern Gospel traditionfrom beautiful expressions
of faith to exciting foot-stompin and hand-clappin gospel tunes.
ELECTRONIC MEDIA PROGRAM
The Recording Arts option fosters creative and original compositions in
its Compositions With Electronic Media courses. Students present their
works once a year in a performance that includes musicians, synthesizers,
samplers, computers, sequencers, video, slides, lighting, and student dancers.
Performing music tailored to the big band sound, this ensemble features
contemporary music suited to the high-powered jazz band. Students learn
to improvise, create their own charts, and double on other instruments.
From solo recitals to accompanying, keyboard players perform in a variety
of settings, including chamber, recitals, and concerts with large ensembles.
This wonderful blend of music and theatre presents two productions annually
as well as a variety of special performances and touring opportunities.
POPULAR MUSIC ENSEMBLES
Student musicians audition for small pop groups that play rock, pop, country,
and other music from Americas popular culture.
THEATRE ARTS PRODUCTIONS
From the hottest new plays to the classics of world dramatic masterpieces
to the best of Broadway (and off Broadway), the Theatre Arts Departments
faculty, staff, and students produce a season of eight productions, including
two musicals and a dance concert. These productions offer Theatre and Musical
Theatre majors, minors, and interested students from other majors a wide
array of opportunities to act, sing, dance, stage-manage, build and run
(and in some cases, direct, choreograph, and design) a challenging variety
of performance styles, staging techniques, authors, periods, and design
Chico students excel at the American College Theatre Festivals annual
Students can audition for the Off Broadways, a musical theatre touring
group, and participate in the Chico Dance Theatre. CDT offers students
the chance to choreograph, as well as perform in the departments yearly
Court Theatre has been the highlight of our theatrical summer season for
36 years. It is the longest running summer stock theatre company in the
CSU and is composed of faculty and staff, professional guest artists, and
a company of student actors and technicians chosen by audition and interview.
This collaborative program highlights intensive interaction and a total
immersion in all aspects of theatre.
CSU SUMMER ARTS
CSU Summer Arts is a multidisciplinary system-wide program offering academic
credit plus a festival in the visual, performing, and literary arts. The
academic component offers two- and three-week residency courses for undergraduates,
graduates, and professionals in creative writing, dance, music, film, video,
theatre, performance, visual arts, design, arts education, and new technology.