Northern Theatre draws audiences local and far, boasting the talent to produce big musical productions such as 'The Pirates of Penzance' on our large stage - and the creativity to feature newer dramatic plays like 'Lasso of Truth' in our Black Box performance space.


Learn how and when to apply HERE.


Performance opportunities

If you have a passion for theatre, you can find success on stage or behind the scenes. Our program produces a diverse season of productions, involving students throughout the School of Fine Arts and across campus.  These productions include fully produced musicals, plays, readings, and cabarets.


Exciting and Responsive Curriculum

We offer a flexible, customizable minor in theatre


Our tight-knit faculty will work with you to tailor your studies to your goals and interests.


Theatre experience and careers

Northern’s theatre program is rooted in the belief that the relevant artist is the thinking artist, coupling the mastery and embodiment of concrete skills with knowledge of and sensitivity to the cultural environments of ideas, artistic forms and other persons. We train and educate artists, scholars and teachers in the rich traditions and current practices of theatre and musical theatre.


Committed to a teaching approach that emphasizes mentorship and individual attention to students, faculty members empower students to develop their personal strengths; provide them with tools and opportunities to realize their potential; and equip them for successful work in professional environments and as lifelong learners.


Production facilities

Productions are staged annually in the recently renovated Johnson Fine Arts Center. This beautiful, state-of-the-art facility now boasts a shared 1,011-seat proscenium mainstage theater (Harvey and Cynthia Jewett Theater), as well as a purpose built/flexible seating 150-seat Black Box Theater for performance and instruction. Take a virtual tour of the Johnson Fine Arts Center.


Northern Fort Playhouse

The Northern Fort Playhouse near Sisseton, S.D., is a collaboration between the Northern State University School of Fine Arts and Fort Sisseton Commission, giving Northern theatre students, alumni and guest professionals additional acting experiences and offering northeast South Dakota splendid live summer theatre. At Northern, you'll have the opportunity to fill many acting and production roles at Northern Fort Playhouse.



Northern's club for theatre enthusiasts has remained active and vibrant since its inception in 1923.



South Dakotans for the Arts

Aberdeen Community Theatre

Theatre Minor


Northern Fort Playhouse

Peek behind the scenes of Northern Theatre