Updated on Friday 1 March 2013
Are you an international student wondering where to study show production? Cities around the United States host numerous concert tours, amusement park events, live theater productions, conferences and meetings every year. There's no better place to learn about the craft of producing an excellent performance than here in the US.
Do you want to know where to study show production? The United States is a big place. The distance between the Pacific to the Atlantic spans nearly 3,000 miles, if you were to drive it you would pass through urban metropolises and one-stoplight towns, over dusty deserts and majestic mountains, past horse-and-buggies and flashy sports cars. For international students, it is important to know the attributes of each diverse geographic area so you can pick the best place to study your subject of interest.
If you need to know where to study show production, it would be remiss not to think of Los Angeles and New York. However, if Los Angeles or New York isn't your cup of tea, consider Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida. While studying show production at Full Sail you can take classes in music production, audio and visual technology, as well as utilize their state-of-the-art production studio. Winter Park is also in close proximity to the Walt Disney World and Universal Studios theme parks, both of which are places of interest for international students and also produce numerous large-scale, live productions on a daily basis.
Those who are interested in Los Angeles, California more than likely already know that it is home to the legendary Hollywood, the hub for most American movies and a must-visit stop for concert tours, wanna-be musicians, and aspiring actors. In addition to all the live and recorded entertainment happenings, Los Angeles is also home to some of the nation's top show production schools.
The University of Southern California's School of Dramatic Arts boasts programs in sound design, stage management, and technical direction. With five primary theater venues on campus, you could hone your skills working backstage of one of many live productions. Just north of Los Angeles is California State University Northridge; there you can work toward a degree in music industry studies while practicing digital audio recording, editing and multimedia development in their music technology lab. Both schools are just minutes from downtown Los Angeles. Additionally, Disneyland is easily accessible and provides a great training ground for live events such as shows, parades and fireworks with musical accompaniment.
On the other side of the country, you will find New York, a city equally as vibrant as Los Angeles but in an entirely different way. Here, winters aren't spent in flip-flops on the beach. Instead, time is passed strolling through Central Park, discovering the latest concert venue, and indulging in Broadway. Amongst the dozens of building lining the streets of this city you will also find other contenders for the top show production schools in the US. New York University's Tisch School of the Arts is home to studies in film and television, drama and recorded music. You can also study music business and music technology within the Steinhart School of Culture, Education and Human Development. Beyond the classroom, there are endless opportunities for international students to experience show production first hand in the Big Apple.
If you are willing to expand your horizons beyond concert tours and theater production, you could consider other avenues for show production. Corporations, houses of worship and event planning companies all need people to run soundboards, set up visuals and create the ultimate sensory experience for meetings and conferences. You could try DePaul University or the Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago for sound recording or audio production, or you could study in Washington DC while soaking in the American political scene. Alternatively, you could opt for a program in a more rural location and be more creative as to where you can use your skills.
If you are wondering where to study show production, first think about which part of the US you want to experience. Do you want to take courses in a quieter college town or do you want to dive into one of the bigger show production hubs? Do you want to make sure you attend one of the top show production schools or are you more focused on jumping head-first into an active, live production scene? The choice is yours.