Department of Theatre Arts

Department of Theatre Arts

An internationally acclaimed leader and producer of artistic merit. Featuring internationally celebrated faculty engaging the African Diaspora and the World.

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University Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

The University continues to closely monitor the spread of COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus, as additional cases are confirmed in the United States and other countries. The University continues to formulate and adjust its plans as needed.

Welcome On Board


#Acting                #MusicalTheatre                #DanceArts              #ArtsAdministration              #TheatreTechnology

Welcome Letter from the Office of the Associate Dean of Fine Arts!

Dear Class of 2025:

Welcome and congratulations on your acceptance to the Division of Fine Arts at Howard University! Earning a place in our community of artist-scholars is no small achievement and we are delighted that you have selected Howard to continue your creative and intellectual journey. You now share a history with revered Howardites such as Taraji P. Henson, Richard Smallwood, Toni Morrison, Phylicia Rashad, Debbie Allen, Chadwick Boseman, Anthony Anderson, Kamala Harris, Roberta Flack, Lois Mailou Jones, David Driskell, Nick Cannon and many more.

As an alumna (Dr. Farrington) and a long-time member of the University community (Coordinator Paige-Deneal), we can attest to the fact that your lives will change forever as a result of your decision to make Howard your educational home. Since coming to Howard as a reticent teenager from New York and receiving my BFA, I (Dr. Farrington) have remained in touch with my faculty mentors, whose examples and support have sustained me for a lifetime. The same opportunities await you.

The mission of our Art, Music and Theatre faculty is to prepare you to become multi-talented creators and thinkers with a breadth of knowledge and skills that spans disciplines. Our goal is also to infuse you with a sense of the importance of service—to your communities and beyond. The arts have an innate ability to enhance the human experience, and you, as members of the art community, now share in this power.

Your experience at Howard will be shaped not only by faculty and advisors, but also by you—it will be what you make it; and it will be limited only by the limitations you place on yourselves. Know that we are here to help you in any way that we can, so that your journey is a successful one.

Once again, welcome to Howard!



Lisa E. Farrington, PhD, MPhil, MA                        Thelma Paige-Deneal 

Associate Dean of Fine Arts                                   Fine Arts Student Affairs Coordinator


To download official letter click here

A Welcome Letter from our Interim Chair: Dr. Ofosuwa M. Abiola

Welcome to the Department of Theatre Arts

You have made a life altering choice by majoring in Theatre Arts at Howard University. The Department offers five concentrations: Acting, Musical Theatre, Dance, Arts Administration, and Theatre Technology. The Theatre Arts Department is known for its illustrious alumni, historical relevance, and for providing students the opportunity to engage up and coming and established renowned guest artists. Once involved with our dedicated faculty and modern-day, culturally relevant programming, our success in producing skilled, grounded performers, triple threats, theatre administrators, and technical theatre practitioners will be apparent. With a history of over a century, and distinction as the first HBCU to offer a BFA degree, Howard’s Department of Theatre Arts will continue to lead as an artist incubator and producer of cutting-edge artists who are not afraid to step out of the box. From Felicia Rashad, Chuck Davis, and Debbie Allen, to Chadwick Bozeman, Anthony Anderson, and many others in-between and beyond, Howard’s footprint in the Acting, Dance, and the Musical Theatre world is significant.

With the last academic year being marked by the historical events of the Black Lives Matter Movement, the Covid-19 Pandemic, and all online instruction for a virtually hands-on discipline, students were challenged to rise to the occasion. They had to embrace the understanding that some changes made as a result of these historic events would be with us for years to come – and that some would never leave. However, while navigating the Theatre Arts program students quickly came to the realization that these realities were nonfactors with regard to their growth and ultimate achievement of excellence.

Although a light is at the end of the tunnel, Covid, racial, gender, and many other inequities, and injustices are still a reality. For academic year 2021-2022, you will be challenged to rise; to reimagine and rebuild what has long been neglected due to the social and political climate you find yourself in in this country; to push yourself until the inner excellence that we know you possess can no longer be contained within; and to rival the sun – an achievable feat because you have decided to join a list of luminaries by choosing Howard University’s Department of Theatre Arts.

Your journey starts now.

Ofosuwa M. Abiola

Ofosuwa M. Abiola, PhD

Interim Chair, Department of Theatre Arts

Click here to download the official letter


Join us as the BFA, Musical Theatre Class of 2021 performs and inspires, One Last Time

Our incredible Seniors will present and premiere musical works!


View presentations by: Olivia Dorsey, Deimoni Brewington, Kayla Warren



Join us for our final spotlight

session of the semester

Friday April 16th, 2021

@ 6:00 pm EST








Register Here!



Join us for our Annual

Spring Dance Concert

April 16- 18, 2021!

YouTube Links will be shared prior to event start time.



HU DANCE ARTS presents

FULL CIRCLE (Senior Capstone Presentations)

Choreographers include

Siani Beckett

Gillian Clifford

Naomi K. Johnson 

Geneva White &

Jay'kayla Winford

Dance Capstone Presentation- Live Mon Apr 19th @ 6:00 pm

Musical Theatre presents their Studio to Stage Series

View their Showcases from this semester and Fall 2020!


Musical Theatre Program YouTube Channel  

Young Playwrights’ Theater In Residency at Howard University’s Department of Theatre Arts 

Young Playwrights’ Theater (YPT) Presents 

Silence is Violence: The Future of the Field 

A Devised Virtual Performance Directed by YPT Artistic Director Farah Lawal Harris 

In Residency at Howard University’s Department of Theatre Arts 


Silence is Violence: The Future of the Field - Episode 1: We Meet Again

Silence is Violence: The Future of the Field - Episode 2: We’re All Screaming!

Silence is Violence: The Future of the Field - Episode 3: We, the Vanguard

Young Playwrights’ Theater (YPT)
Dance Spring 2021-1

H.U. Dance Arts Interdisciplinary Project with Hope Boykin

Howard University Alumni | Principle Dancer Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater & Emerging Choreographer To Watch Rachel Harris

Howard University Dance Arts is proud to welcome back H.U. Alumna Ms. Hope Boykin to serve as Artistic Advisor and Guest Choreographer for the H.U. Dance Arts 2021 Virtual Spring Concert. Hope recently completed 18 years with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. In addition to creating new breathtaking choreographic work on students within the department, Hope will be bringing her expertise as a well-traveled and accomplished professional dancer, choreographer, educator and producer to the Dance Arts program. Ms. Boykin will also be teaching a scholastically driven interdisciplinary Composition Course to promising juniors and seniors that involves an advanced approach and breakdown of choreography, choreographic research, history, and dance on film. Current technology for the class includes hands on computer software and equipment enhancing video quality, editing, and design techniques.

The Howard University Dance Arts 2021 Virtual Spring Concert will also include new choreographic work from emerging choreographer and current Parsons Dance Company member Rachel Harris. Ms. Harris is a graduate of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance with a choreographic voice ready to be heard. The H.U. Dance Arts 2021 Spring Concert is a 3-day event that will also include talk backs, panel discussions and talented student choreography chosen to be showcased within the festivities. Ms. Boykin and Ms. Harris are supported by The International Association of Blacks in Dance and Friends of Theatre and Dance at Howard University.

Want To Be A Howard Player?


Information for Current Students

Congratulations to Tony Starnes!

Tony Starnes- Helen-2020

Tony Starnes serves on staff at Howard University's Department of Theatre Arts.  His professional career allows him to bring real-world experience and knowledge to our students and departmental season.

For the latest about the 2020 Helen Hayes Awards and more visit here!


Alumni Spotlight!

Celebrating the work of our esteemed alum

Student Spotlight!

Recognizing our hard working student artists

Faculty Spotlight!

Honoring the achievements of our distinguished faculty


Complete the form here.

Major and Concentrations

Learn more about the concentrations we offer within the Department of Theatre Arts.


Lulu Vere Childers Hall (Fine Arts)

Department of Theatre Arts
2455 Sixth Street N.W., Suite 1044
Washington, D.C. 20059

202-806-7050 T
202-806-9193 F 

Janet Johnson, Administrative Aid