Updated February 11, 2013A lot of the most compelling drama and large-scale shows in and around the Metro-Detroit area are produced by students at the area's colleges and universities. While some of the theater departments share resources, still others have several theaters and venues for public performances. Here is a list of college and university theaters in Detroit:
Eastern Michigan University: The Department of Theater Arts at EMU is made up of both undergraduate and graduate students and hosts several productions a year:
- The Quirk Theatre hosts EMU's faculty-directed Mainstage Season, which includes six large-scale productions. The theater has a proscenium arch and 380 seats. The theater is located on the campus of Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti off of East Circle Drive.
- The Sponberg Theatre is located in the same building and has 202 seats and a modified thrust stage. It hosts two experimental, small-scale productions each year.
- The Frank Ross Laboratory Theatre is otherwise known as The Lab and is a black-box theater. It seats 50 and can be extensively modified to suit many different types of productions. It is run entirely by students.
Oakland Community College: The students in the Theatre Program at the Orchard Ridge Campus produce both a spring and fall show. The theatre is located on campus at 27055 Orchard Lake Road in Farmington Hills.
Oakland University: The Department of Music, Theatre and Dance produces a host of shows at its Varner facilities, including five large-scale productions at Varner Recital Hall. The facilities also include Varner Lab Theatre and Varner Studio Theater and are located in the southwest quadrant of the Rochester campus. Note: Professional productions are also hosted on campus at Meadow Brook Theatre.
University of Detroit Mercy: The University of Detroit Mercy Theatre Company produces four shows a year. The productions are hosted at the 392-seat Marygrove Theater at Marygrove College at 8425 West McNichols Road in Detroit.
University of Michigan: The University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance produces four shows during the school year at three different venues:
- The Lydia Mendelssohn Theater is located within the Michigan League building at 911 North University Avenue in Ann Arbor. The building actually dates back to 1929. In addition to the 644-seat theater with a cyclorama (curved wall at the back of the stage), floor and balcony, the venue also has a shoe-box theatre.
- The Arthur Miller Theater has a courtyard format, meaning its 240 seats wrap around the mezzanine on three sides. It is located at 226 Murfin Avenue in Ann Arbor.
- The Power Center for Performing Arts is a technically sophisticated theater with a proscenium arch. The stage thrusts into the seating area, which insures that no seat is more than 80 feet away. The theater is located at 121 Fletcher Street in Ann Arbor.