First of all, there’s no generals for Field Work Term — people seek out FWT opportunities that will contribute to their specific, individual educational Plans.
I study a lot of theater and came in as mainly an actor. I’ve been to New York City to work off-Broadway as a producer’s assistant and development intern the first two FWTs, then to rural Southern India last year to work at a small residential theater school. Right now, given my interest in theater as a social institution in America, I’m trying to go to LA to work at the Los Angeles Poverty Department.
It’s pretty hard to land an acting gig for 7 weeks in the winter, when you’re in school when you would need to be auditioning. Rarely happens. I prefer to save it for during the term or the summer. However, here’s a photo from a show written, directed, produced, and performed entirely by Bennington current students alums in NYC last FWT:
Hey! I’m not a drama student but, surprisingly, I actually know the answers to all these questions, so I gotcha.
1 - Not for admission to Bennington, no. If you have footage of your acting/other drama work and want to include it in your application supplement, then that’s great, but it’s not a necessity. As far as wanting to study drama once you’ve arrived at Bennington, you will likely be auditioning on a production-by-production basis, as well as for certain advanced classes. Intro-level drama classes don’t require any auditions as far as I’m aware, so it’s easy to get your feet wet.
2 - Yeah, totally! The availability of certain classes changes depending on what day of the week it is but I’d imagine that, once the semester starts back up, there’s at least one acting class you could sit in on for any day of the week. You can always schedule a visit around classes you want to sit in on, so if you decide this is something you wanna do once classes start this year, give the Admissions Office a call at (802)-440-4312 to talk about scheduling a visit.
3 - Yes, there are definitely video/film classes. Rather than bore you with a long list of them in this answer, I’ll just link you through to the visual arts curriculum on our website, which shows a good selection of video/film courses from the past couple of years (you might have to scroll down a bunch; there are loads of visual arts courses to choose from, although they are separated by discipline).
No need to apologize! Glad I could actually answer a drama question for once!
If you’re looking for good theater programs, you’re definitely looking in the right place. Princeton Review currently ranks Bennington’s college theater #3 out of all the schools they profile. While ranking systems can be subjective and not always the best indication of a place, I can definitely corroborate our Theater ranking as a student.
Theater productions on-campus are unfailingly well-produced and conducted. Students and faculty put a huge amount of work into every aspect of the production, from set design and lighting to costuming and acting, and it shows. Drama students are taught multiple approaches to acting and provided with many different venues to hone their craft - while the large-scale productions they put on are certainly the most visible to non-drama students, there are also always student pieces to be performed, various rehearsals to attend, and a weekly Drama Forum in which students and faculty can workshop pieces that they are currently working on. You can read more about the drama curriculum here.
Bennington’s a great school. Call me biased, but the life and learning experiences I’ve had here just couldn’t have happened anywhere else for me. As far as being hard to get into, I’d say that Bennington judges applicants not only on the strength of their academic record and application, but also on ‘fit’ - whether or not they are students that have the capacity to be passionate and self-directed learners.
The campus architecture is a mix between Colonial and some newer, Modern-style buildings. It’s an interesting mashup of buildings that were built sometime around the College’s inception (1930’s-era) and buildings that have been built more recently (a few here and there during the 70s, and another few in the past decade). Even if colonial ‘is not completely your thing,’ there’s still a lot of really interesting style and flavor to the campus.
I wouldn’t say our dorms are very big (in terms of occupancy) at all. They’re all roughly the same capacity (30 or 35 people to a house) and they all have really nice, spacious rooms. Housing at Bennington is all about community, wherein each house is its own self-contained community that exists in addition to the campus community at large. You can find a really good description of housing at Bennington here.
I hope I answered all your questions!
In your life, you’ll find that you will die many times. You might think ‘This is the end!’ but you’ll keep going.