Theatre Arts Groups, Clubs & Organizations

At IWU there are countless ways to be involved in theatre other than in class and on stage. Below are descriptions of the many groups formed and governed by students with faculty or staff mentorship. These organizations promote creativity and leadership while fostering actors, directors, playwrights, designers, dancers and comedians. You can learn more about Fine Arts student organizations here.

Masquers
Masquers is the oldest student service organization on the IWU campus and is part of the School of Theatre Arts. Masquers is involved in several fundraising activities throughout the year. The funds generated are used to support several philanthropic endeavors which have included Adopt-a-Family, donating to various homeless shelters, serving meals at Safe Harbor homeless shelter, sending packages to our military personnel in foreign lands, working with Project Oz and various other worthy causes as well as hosting the annual SoTA Holiday Celebration in December for the entire School of Theatre Arts community. The staff sponsor is Kelly Ullom.
Phoenix Theatre

phoenix logo

The Phoenix Theatre is a small black box theatre located in The Memorial Center, through the Ideas Center. Each year, the Phoenix board of directors hears proposals for a production season. Up to 15 pieces are produced each year ranging from Shakespeare, musical theatre, performance art and original plays. The possibilities are endless. This is a great place for first year students to spread their wings. The staff sponsor is Armie Thompson.

Music Theatre Society

Music Theatre Society logo

lllinois Wesleyan University's Music Theatre Society takes its roots from the City Center Encores! series in New York and the Reprise series in Los Angeles, which produces lost or rarely seen musicals in a concert setting. With just over a week of rehearsals, actors perform with the script in-hand, backed by a full orchestra and concert production. The group was founded by David Ruben '09 and Diane Teng '09 in 2007. Previous Music Theatre Society productions have included Reefer Madness! The Musical, Do Re Mi, Tenderloin, Funny Girl, Big: The Musical and Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. Music Theatre Society is a great opportunity for first year students to perform. The faculty sponsor is Scott Susong

JM7*

JM7* logo

Illinois Wesleyan's original improv comedy troupe, JM7*, started in 1995 and has been performing ever since. With a range of 6-9 members, JM7* does all forms of improv and performs every 3-4 weeks. JM7* teaches open improv classes intermittently throughout the year for anyone interested in learning more about the art. Alumni from this group have gone on to pursue careers in film and television, plus working with improv groups such as The Second City and The Groundlings. Auditions are required. The faculty sponsor is Scott Susong. 

SoTA Shoppe
SoTA Shoppe

Each year in the Phoenix Theatre, we put on a quick and dirty cabaret boot camp, giving students of all majors a chance to hone their skills singing for an intimate crowd.

Shringara Theatre Company

Shringara (n.) The sanskrit word for love and acceptance of all. 

Shringara is IWU’s multicultural theatre company. Our mission is to produce art that depicts multicultural characters and stories, as well as creating a safe space for people to come together as a community. Shringara promotes acceptance through the artistic medium of theatre. The plays produced by Shringara have consisted of playwrights from many different cultures and backgrounds and we have hosted events such as a play reading festival and student-written and produced work. Along with a central board, Shringara has a small group of members dedicated to producing queer theatre. Any IWU student is welcome to join. The faculty advisor is Dr. Michelle Gibbs.

Quickies
Grab your hot pants, unitards, and Liza wigs, Quickies! Sketch comedy is coming to town! We've got some new members added to our team, an animal act, atomic power and more glitter than you can possibly imagine. Quickies! is an entire night full of hilarity, folly and merriment where we do 60 skits in 60 minutes. Trust us, you haven't laughed this hard since Mitt Romney won the Illinois primary. This is an auditioned group open to all classifications.
Student Choreographed Dance Concert
Each January, the student choreographed dance concert warms the campus with pieces ranging from contemporary and jazz to hip hop, tap and other styles. It is a highlight of the semester and valued and appreciated by the student body. Faculty mentors oversee casting and rehearsals and the concert is performed in the Hansen Student Center. The dance concert is open to all classifications. The faculty sponsor is Sheri Marley.
Cohesion Dance Company
Cohesion Dance Company is a student-directed dance company that meets regularly throughout the year to explore dance and choreograph a concert in the Spring semester. This group is open to the entire student body, so School of Theatre Arts students can also make friendships and connections with dance lovers across academic lines. The faculty sponsor is Jessica Riss-Waltrip.
Theatre Bible Study

Theatre Bible Study logo

This group meets once a week for an hour for Bible study and fellowship. The group follows themed studies such as "Bad Girls From the Bible."  It is great to know that there are other Christians in the School of Theatre Arts.  This is a wonderful support group for prayer requests and a place to feel at home away from home with a group of like spirited students. The faculty sponsor is Scott Susong.