Apr 16, 2024  
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Performing Arts (Music and Theatre)

Music (Performing Arts)

Sharlow - Chair, Allan, Cotter, and Robinson
Fine Arts Building • 417-625-9318


The Music Department of Missouri Southern State University seeks to serve the University and its many constituents, by providing access to a general foundation in music education, professional preparation to individuals interested in selected fields of study within the discipline of music, an environment of cultural enrichment and by providing departmental support to the institutional commitment of the International Mission.


Choral / Vocal Studies

The Choral and Vocal Studies Program provides the singer, regardless of major, the opportunity to perform a wide-ranging, yet complimentary, variety of music in an equally diverse number of ensembles, performances, and genre types.  Our ensembles include:  Concert Chorale (large mixed choir); Madrigal Singers (select mixed ensemble); and Chamber Singers (highly-select mixed ensemble).  MSSU vocalists compete alongside other state universities in competitions sponsored by the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) where they consistently place in the first and second place divisions at the district, state, and national levels.


Instrumental Studies

The Instrumental Studies Program provides the instrumentalist, regardless of major, the opportunity to perform in a variety of instrumental ensembles including the Lion Pride Marching Band, Lion Pride Basketball Pep Band, the Wind Ensemble, the Concert Band, the Southern Symphony, the Southern Jazz Orchestra and Jazz Combos, Brass Ensemble, Trumpet Ensemble, Steel Drum Ensemble, and the Percussion Ensemble. The Lion Pride Band hosts several special events in the fall in addition to performing amazing shows at each MSSU home football game. Our other various instrumental ensembles perform at a high-level while also creating a welcoming musical environment for all students.


Degrees / Certificates

The Department of Music offers a variety of degrees:  Bachelor of Arts in Music; Bachelor of Music Education; Bachelor of Music in Vocal, Instrumental, and Keyboard Performance; Bachelor of Music Theatre; and a Bachelor of Music with Elective Studies in an Outside Field.  In addition to our degrees, we also offer several undergraduate and graduate certificates.  Our undergraduate certificates include:  Music Instruction, Conducting, Ensemble Performance, Jazz Studies, Musical Theatre, Percussion Specialist, and Music Industry. Our graduate certificates, which can be paired with the Master of Science in Education Curriculum and Instruction degree in Teacher Education, include:  Ensemble Pedagogy and Applied Pedagogy.  The Missouri Southern Music Department is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM).


General Education/Core 42 requirements in Area 5B Fine Arts can be fulfilled by MUS 0100  Fundamentals of Music, MUS 0110  Music Appreciation, MUS 0101  Jazz Styles & Appreciation, or MUS 0106  World Music (for music majors) and MUS 0120  History of Rock and Roll.

All music majors (with exception of piano majors) are required to pass a piano proficiency examination prior to graduation. Students must continue to enroll in piano courses regardless of credit requirements until piano proficiency is passed.

A provable equivalency for up to 4 semesters credit of MUS 0240  may be substituted by transfer students whose institution of origin does not have a similar recital attendance program stipulated in their curriculum.

For additional information contact:
Dr. David Sharlow • Music Building 206
417-625-9562 • Sharlow-d@mssu.edu

Theatre (Performing Arts)

David Sharlow - Chair
Fine Arts Building 206 • 417-625-9562


The Theatre Department affirms the mission of Missouri Southern State University and contributes to it by committing to the total education of each student. Every member of the theatre faculty is dedicated to the highest quality teaching and learning of both general education and discipline specific materials. The department prepares its majors for a large variety of careers as well as graduate education. In addition to providing scholarly and creative expression for students through its production program, it exposes the community to a diverse assortment of topical and global issues. The Theatre Department is at the very center of most creative and artistic on-campus and community events through its involvement in all cultural activities housed in Taylor Auditorium.


The theatre faculty works closely with students in an effort to continually improve their learning experiences. Independent studies are offered each semester and new courses are introduced upon students’ requests. When possible, instructors take students with them to professional conventions and conferences. Academic and performance requirements are designed to accommodate various learning styles and artistic intelligences. Faculty and students work side by side in our co-curricular production program.

A Strong Commitment to International Education:

The Theatre Department supports the international mission of the university in its theatre classrooms, on its stages and especially in the international plays selected for themed semesters. As students must become aware of the global nature of all information and comprehend the international arena in which most topical issues reside, the theatre continues to provide a fertile ground upon which to inspire such a comprehension. International travel is encouraged for all faculty and students of the department.

A Strong Commitment to Liberal Arts and General Education Requirements:

Every member of the theatre faculty is dedicated to each and every student in the university. TH 0110 - Theatre Appreciation  , the departmental General Education/Core 42 Requirements course for area 5B Fine Arts, provides many students with their first theatre experience; an experience about which they can think, speak and write. TH 0220 - Professional Interaction  is a new course that is an option for General Education/Core 42 Requirements in area 2B Oral Communications.

Scholarly and Creative Expression:

All theatre productions are the end product of scholarly and creative expressions. Directors, designers and actors continually research different eras, cultures, social mores and customs and historical, economic, political and literary influences in an attempt to bring accurate realities to the stage. The Theatre Department brings a balanced, comprehensive variety of plays to its students and audiences. Additionally, graduating seniors develop and complete a creative project showcasing their unique interests and talents.

Community Service:

All of the Theatre Department’s productions, raising a diverse range of topics, are performed for the campus and public communities. The children’s theatre program alone, plays to approximately 10,000 people each year. The Theatre Department is responsible for the operation of Taylor Auditorium, a 2000-seat auditorium that serves as a venue for events sponsored by both on campus organizations and community groups.

Specialized theatre training provides students with a broad academic background that can lead to a number of careers:

Theatre Performance/Design • Television Production/Performance • Commercials • Public Relations • Stage Management • Graduate Study • Technical Theatre • Business • Secondary Education • Ministry • Professional Wardrobe Technician • Theme Park Performance/Production

Features Unique to Theatre Department:

  1. Working side-by-side with faculty in acting, house and stage management, directing, technical production and design.
  2. A children’s theatre program performing for more than 10,000 people annually from the four-state area.
  3. Theatre faculty members who have professional experience in their teaching specialties.
  4. Two theatre organizations: Southern Players and Alpha Psi Omega, a national honorary fraternity.
  5. The Missouri Shakespeare Festival.

The Theatre Department offers a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in theatre and a Bachelor of Science in Education degree with a major in Theatre/Speech. A minor in theatre is also available.

More detailed information is available in the theatre office, Taylor Performing Arts Center 237.

For additional information contact:
Dr. David Sharlow
Fine Arts Building 206
417-625-9562 • Sharlow-d@mssu.edu


    Major Programs (Undergraduate)
    Certificates (Undergraduate)
    Certificates (Graduate)
    Minors (Undergraduate)
    Teacher Education Programs


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