Creative and Performing Arts

ART 101  Drawing I  (3)  

This is a broad foundation course that introduces a variety of drawing techniques, approaches and subject matter. A focus on observational drawing improves the student's ability to "see" (visual perception) and develops technical drawing skills. Projects are designed to enhance the understanding and use of formal elements, principles and composition while exploring drawing's creative and expressive potential. Subject matter includes still life, landscape, interiors, and the figure. Studio projects are augmented by critiques, visual presentations and discussion. Sketchbook/journal required.

ART 103 Design Lab (3)
The main goal of Design Lab I is to solve design (world?) problems through creative design solutions. In learning how to visually communicate in imaginative ways, you’re seeking to radically alter how people look at and perceive the world around them. You will become an effective and imaginative cultural producer. For this course, students will use some of the digital creative software found in the Adobe Creative Suite, as well as other digital software. Other techniques include collage, drawing, photography, printmaking, and videography.

As a Critical Thinking Seminar-designated course (or CTS), students will critically analyze and discuss the power of design solutions (images, objects, interactivity) in light of design components (form, composition, balance, shape, space, color, for example). This course foregrounds the process of design in a variety of ways, namely through creative projects. You’ll create your design solutions through a combination of form and content, and in a variety of contexts. In other words, you will integrate visual information with meaning or message, in a presentation method. Your creative work will always be discussed in light of, and at times be presented to, the general public or an audience. What can your audience learn about the world through your design work? How do they learn it? What can (or will) they do as a result of what they’re learning?This course also satisfies the LO2 Critical Thinking Seminar.

ART 290W Earth Art (3.5)
A unit of the tandem The Art of Living, taken in conjunction with PHIL 110W Introduction to Philosophy.  Both art and philosophy are concerned with exploring, expressing, critiquing, and creating ways of seeing our world and our place in it. Artists who create "earth art" do this in an especially deliberate way, taking as their medium our interactions with the natural world that provides the supporting context for all human endeavors to live a meaningful life. The philosopher, likewise, reaches for a deeper understanding of her medium, in this case, life itself, exploring in a conceptual fashion what it might mean to live a life that is a rich and meaningful whole.

In this tandem we will read our way in historical order through some highlights of western philosophical attempts to discover, by deploying our capacity for abstract thought, what goes into fashioning a meaningful life. Along the way, we will discuss the nature of beauty and creativity, learning what we can from the very concrete activity of bringing aesthetically satisfying meaning forth by working with and through the opportunities our local natural environments present us. Assignments in one class will in many cases connect directly to those in the other, allowing us plenty of opportunity for exploring the connections between these two challenging and engaging disciplines. As the philosophy component of this tandem also fulfills a Women's Voices requirement in the Sophia Program, we will also be pausing on occasion to consider ways in which issues of gender factor into the work we are doing. This course provides students the opportunity to earn the W.

COMM 103  Introduction to Communication  (3)  

Students develop an increased competency in communicating with precision and style, and also have the opportunity to think critically and creatively about the process of communication. Major topics in communication theory and practice are surveyed in addition to a focus on public speaking.

COMM 103W Introduction to Communication (4)
Essentially, students in COMM 103W Introduction to Communications explore one central question: What is human communication? While it is true that humans use verbal “message-and-response” interchanges, we will discover that communication is a sophisticated, ongoing process. This will lead us to other questions: When and where does human communication occur? How has it shaped centuries of human development? What makes us choose one form of communication — email, text messages, etc. — over another? What are the effects of each medium of communication on the quality of our messages?This course also satisfies an LO2 Women’s Voices and provides students the opportunity to earn the W. Section 71379 is tied to a first-year faculty advisor.

Multiple dance courses may be used to satisfy the Creative and Performing Arts requirement as long as they add up to at least three credit hours. Students receive two credits for technique courses taken for the first time and one credit for subsequent enrollment in the same level technique course.

DANC 144 Modern Dance Technique: Beginning (2)
An introduction to movement concepts of modern dance. Designed for students with no previous movement training. May be repeated for one credit.

DANC 145 Ballet Technique: Beginning (2)
An introduction to basic ballet technique and terminology. Designed for students with no previous movement training. May be repeated for one credit.

DANC 148 Jazz Technique: Beginning (2)
A practical course in contemporary jazz technique hip hop and lyrical styles. May be repeated for one credit.

DANC 240 Introduction to Dance (3)
This course is a survey of dance as an art form presented in both lecture and studio format. It includes a brief history of dance, dance theatre, and world dance forms as a model of cultural identity. The creative process is explored through Laban-based motif notation (movement notation). The practical experience of this course is intended to develop the student’s personal aesthetic and appreciation of dance.

DANC 245 Ballet Technique: Intermediate (2)
A technique course with an emphasis on correct alignment and proper execution of barre and center exercises. May be repeated for one credit.

DANC 248 Jazz Technique: Intermediate (2)
Jazz technique at an intermediate level with emphasis on performance and styles; may be repeated for one credit.

DANC 345 Ballet Technique: Advanced (2)
A continuation of ballet technique with an emphasis on accuracy, style, intricate combinations, strength, endurance, and a more extensive vocabulary; may be repeated for one credit.

DANC 348 Jazz Technique: Advanced (2)
A continuation of jazz technique providing a stimulating and rigorous application of both the traditional jazz dance vocabulary and contemporary styles; may be repeated for one credit.

MUS 111–131 Applied Music: Private Lessons — Instrumental or Voice (1–2 credits)

Multiple courses may be used to satisfy the Creative and Performing Arts requirement as long as they add up to at least three credit hours. Lessons are offered for voice, piano, and all brass, string, woodwind and percussion instruments. Fees are $400 per semester for a half-hour lesson a week (one semester hour of credit), and $600 per semester for a 50-minute lesson a week (two semester hours of credit).

MUS 150 Voices in Time: A Critical Thinking Seminar (3)
As musicians ourselves and passionate listeners, many of us acknowledge a love for music and an appreciation of its power to move us emotionally. But what does it mean to really know a piece of music? This course will examine ways of knowing and understanding the art of music, in this case, music created or interpreted by women. We will consider the genesis and creation of a work, the historical/political climate in which it was created, the personal story of the composer or personal artist at the center of the work, the reception of the work and its influence on society; all facets of a critical understanding at the center of an informed reading or performance. In this way, the course will examine the contributions women have made to the field of human knowledge and art by composing and performing music. This course will also serve as a Critical Thinking Seminar. As such, we will focus on sharpening skills in interpretation, analysis, evaluation, inference and explanation. An introduction to the problem of searching out and utilizing appropriate resource materials will be a further component of the course. Though there will be a component of classroom performance, no previous experience or training is necessary. This course also satisfies LO2 Critical Thinking Seminar and an LO2 Women's Voices.

MUS 181 Theory I: Fundamentals of Music (3)
For students with little or no previous training in music. A study of the organizational principles inherent in pitch and rhythm systems, with emphasis on the notation of these in written symbols. Such concepts as tonality, transposition, modulation, harmonic motion, and simple forms are introduced. Aural skills, keyboard applications, and the development of fluency in notation are stressed. One half-hour of computer drill per week is required. First semester of the theory sequence for majors and minors.


Students may enroll for ensemble courses that offer one hour of credit per semester. Auditions are required before acceptance into any of the choral ensembles. After you arrive on campus, sign up for an audition appointment in Moreau Hall, Room 309. If you are selected for one of the groups, you may add the course to your schedule through PRISM or at Student Academic Services (166 Le Mans Hall).

MUS 201 Collegiate Choir (1)
A women’s choir that performs primarily on campus. Goals include developing excellent individual and group tone quality, working toward clear and proper diction, and strengthening aural and music reading abilities. Performs quality women’s repertoire, both sacred and secular, in 2–4 parts. Membership by audition only. Auditions will take place during August orientation through the first week of classes.

MUS 203 Women's Choir (1)
This is the College’s select women’s ensemble which performs music of all periods with an emphasis on new music. The choir regularly commissions and records new works, takes national concert tours every other year, and makes Carnegie Hall appearances every four years. The ensemble has regular performances with the South Bend Symphony Orchestra and hosts the annual High School Women’s Choir Festival. Membership is by audition only which will take place during August orientation through the first week of classes. 

MUS 207  Concert Band  (1)  

Concert band is a non-auditioned instrumental ensemble open to all members of the college community. The course includes the study and performance of significant concert band literature. May be repeated for credit.

THTR 135W Introduction to Theatre (4)
This course is designed to introduce students to the art, practice, and enjoyment of theatre. Participants will learn through lecture, assigned readings, hands-on exercises, and demonstrations about the elements of a theatrical production. As often as possible, students will be invited to learn about the theatre by “doing” (i.e. acting in a scene rather than simply talking about it). The course structure assumes that while the student may never choose to participate in a play she will, hopefully, enjoy attending the theatre long after the course ends. This course provides students the opportunity to earn the W. 

THTR 205 Introduction to Acting (3)
Exploration of the elements of a realistic acting technique using games, improvisations and exercises, culminating in two-character scenes later in the semester. This course also satisfies an LO2 Women’s Voices.