Skip to main content

About Us

Director’s Note

Hello. I am thrilled to have been the Director of UCF’s School of Performing Arts since 2017! It was a lifelong dream that I would be associated with a world-class institution serving the disciplines of music, dance and theatre. The School of Performing Arts comprises faculty with expertise in many areas who are dedicated to student success, and celebrated for their successes as artists and educators. Our performing arts programs are designed for young artists seeking a career as a performer, designer, practitioner, teacher, and more. Our family includes musicians, musical theatre performers, actors, themed experience designers, stage managers, future educators, technicians, conductors, composers and clinicians. Our website contains more information on courses of study and performances, which can be found in our event calendar.

Students enjoy a convivial, supportive atmosphere of mutual respect, high standards artistically and ethically, and a faculty that is devoted to our students’ success. There are endless opportunities to perform, as part of a musical ensemble or our 350-person marching band, on stage in theatrical productions, in recitals, operas, in student organizations, or as part of our resident symphony orchestra.

The UCF Department of Music was established in 1968. The department is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM), with the initial NASM accreditation being awarded in 1981. Our music education programs are fully accredited by the National Collegiate Association for Teacher Education (NCATE) and lead to teacher certification by the Florida Department of Education (FLDE). The university is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). UCF is Florida’s first All-Steinway School.

The Department of Theatre was established in 1969 and our first seasons were produced in a 124-foot tent. Today we present theatre and dance performances in a variety of venues, both on campus and in our partner theatre spaces at Orlando Shakes and the Orlando REP. In 2016, the department earned full accreditation by the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST). We offer world-class MFAs in acting, theatre for young audiences, and Themed Experience.  Our students spend two years in classes on campus then go on to work in our partner theatres or the themed experience industry as interns in their third.

Every April, the School of Performing Arts, in cooperation with the School of Visual Arts and Design, presents UCF Celebrates the Arts! The Dr. Phillips Center in downtown Orlando is our venue as students from all areas of the school perform in the facility. This is the crowning jewel in our season of spectacular performances. We also host internationally-acclaimed artists right here on our campus, offering students the opportunity to interact with the stars in their fields.

With seventeen unique degree programs the School of Performing Arts covers a broad spectrum of 21st century arts careers and prepares students to succeed. From large music and theatre ensembles that showcase our students’ impressive performance abilities to chamber music recitals featuring our internationally acclaimed artist faculty to guest performers from around the world, we know you will be delighted to see and hear some of the best artists in the country—right here in Central Florida. I encourage you to explore our website and reach out to our faculty to ask any questions you may have.

Michael Wainstein Headshot
Theatrically and musically yours,
Michael Wainstein
Director, UCF School of Performing Arts

The UCF School of Performing Arts is part of the UCF College of Arts and Humanities and comprises the music and theatre programs at the University of Central Florida. In 2013, the music and theatre departments combined to form the School of Performing Arts with more than 100 faculty and staff serving more than 1,000 undergraduate and graduate students earning degrees in the performing arts as well as thousands of students from other majors across the university taking music, theatre and dance classes.

Music ensemble performs on stage

School of Performing Arts Mission Statement

The School of Performing Arts produces outstanding practitioners, educators and scholars in Music and Theatre, while fostering a strong relationship between the community and the artists. The School enhances all of the programs at UCF with access to high-level performances and emphasis on the critical importance of creating art while encouraging creativity and innovation across all disciplines. We serve our campus and community with research and creative activities that innovate, inspire, entertain and enlighten. While the sciences explain what makes us live, the arts make life worth living.

Theatre UCF Mission Statement

Theatre UCF provides a competitive edge to undergraduate and graduate students seeking to achieve excellence as professional theatre practitioners, scholars and creative intellectual leaders while inspiring them to be aware and enlightened human beings. We enhance the life and culture of the University and community through the arts and collaborate with professional partners to build a stronger community.

Theatre UCF Vision

Theatre UCF will continue to expand our national and international presence as a performing arts program, and become recognized for our intellectual, cultural, technological and professional environment with nationally and internationally recognized faculty, state-of-the-art facilities and professionally successful alumni.

Theatre UCF Values

We believe in process, inclusivity, integrity, versatility, discipline, collaboration, creativity, respect, passion, diversity and responsible use of resources in the pursuit of excellence.

UCF School of Performing Arts Diversity and Inclusion Statement

The University of Central Florida School of Performing Arts considers the diversity of its students, faculty, and staff to be a strength and critical to its educational mission. UCF expects every member of the university community to contribute to an inclusive and respectful culture for all in its classrooms, work environments, and at campus events. Dimensions of diversity can include but are not limited to sex, race, age, size, national origin, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, intellectual and physical ability, sexual orientation, income, faith and non-faith perspectives, socio-economic class, political ideology, education, primary language, family status, military experience, cognitive style, and communication style. The individual intersection of these experiences and characteristics must be valued in our community.

Members of the UCF School of Performing Arts are committed to actively listening to perspectives that are different than their own, and actively affirming and including different perspectives in the creative process, including but not limited to sex, race, age, size, national origin, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, intellectual and physical ability, sexual orientation, income, faith and non-faith perspectives, socio-economic class, political ideology, education, primary language, family status, military experience, cognitive style, and communication style. We aim to demonstrate our commitment to diversity through selection of content to be performed, course content, recruitment, leadership, faculty makeup, and a constantly evolving conversation with students, faculty, patrons, and the UCF community.

We, as members or the School of Performing Arts,

  1. Will not tolerate racism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, religious intolerance, ageism, or hate speech in any form.
    -“Racism is a marriage of racist policies and racist ideas that produces and normalizes racial inequities.”
  2. Affirm that students, faculty and staff will be heard, acknowledged, supported, and safe from any retribution for expressing their needs and opinions.
  3. Will reflect equity and diversity in the curriculum, theatre season selection, concert selections, marketing, leadership and casting.
  4. Will strive to ensure that artistic and creative teams pursue inclusion on those teams of the people whose stories they are telling, so that the stories of diverse ethnic and social backgrounds are told responsibly. All teams should reflect the diversity of the student body whenever possible.
  5. We will take an interdisciplinary approach to equity and diversity, both at UCF and in our Orlando community.
  6. Support all members of the School of Performing Arts community to include their personal pronouns in their email signatures.
  7. Will establish and clearly display Conflict Resolution Paths to assist students, faculty, and staff in seeking help for problems in the classroom, rehearsal hall, or otherwise. Members of the Conflict Resolution Path will be trained.

If you need to report an issue at the university, please use the UCF IntegrityLine.

UCF Music Mission Statement

UCF Music recognizes that music is basic to the human condition; that music promotes inclusiveness, diversity and understanding in a global society; that music enhances creativity, the source of all human progress; and that music elevates the human spirit. The primary mission of the Department of Music is to promote the musical arts by providing our students with the best education possible and by providing meaningful and diverse experiences in performance, education, composition, scholarly research, and service to the university, Orlando metropolitan area, state and beyond.

UCF Music Goals

  1. Offering outstanding undergraduate programs in music that provide students with the comprehensive knowledge, skills, and experiences to be successful and sophisticated creators, performers, educators, scholars and consumers of music.
  2. Offering progressive and flexible graduate programs in music.
  3. Cultivating and sustaining regional, state, national and international collaborations and partnerships with professional and educational organizations.
  4. Promoting inclusiveness and diversity in curricula; performances; scholarly research and creative activities; and faculty, staff and students.
  5. Providing quality performances, workshops, clinics, master classes and music camps to students, music educators and the general public.

Accreditations

The UCF School of Performing Arts is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM), with the department’s initial NASM accreditation being awarded in 1981.

The UCF School of Performing Arts is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music initially awarded in 1981. For additional information about NASM, visit their website or contact the NASM office at 11250 Roger Bacon Drive, Suite 21, Reston, VA 20190-5248, (703) 437-0700.

The UCF School of Performing Arts is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre. For additional information about NAST, visit their website or contact the NAST office at 11250 Roger Bacon Drive, Suite 21, Reston, VA 20190-5248, (703) 437-0700.

The Bachelor of Music Education (BME) is a Florida Department of Education (FLDOE) state-approved educator preparation program which meets requirements for K-12 Music teacher certification.

The University of Central Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award degrees at the associate, baccalaureate, master’s, specialist, and doctoral levels. Additional information regarding the university’s SACSCOC accreditation is provided by UCF’s Academic Program Quality unit within the Office of Academic Affairs.