21M.735 | Spring 2004 | Undergraduate

Technical Design: Scenery, Mechanisms, and Special Effects


Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Grade and Project Structure: Design for the Theater - Technical Design 21M.735

Grading is based on four areas of achievement:

Class Work / Attendance 25%
Reports 30%
Production Responsibilities 15%
Final Project 30%

The report and the final project, which comprise 60% of the grade, will be graded 60% on technical merit and 40% on communication.


Each Student is required to research and write 10 reports in the form of a Tech note. Tech notes are concise 1-3 page descriptions of a tool, technique, methodology, or solution for specific problems in Technical Production. The Tech note should use text and, or graphics to explain the selected topic.

Production Responsibilty

Each student is required to work 24 hours on Music and Theater Arts productions on Scenery or on projects for the department. All hours must be completed; grading is on work and attitude. Students must confirm work schedules before arriving at any site to fulfill the production hours obligation. The Production Assignment Time Record must be filled out describing each job completed and verified by the initials of the staff member in charge. The Time Record is to be submitted as soon as the production hours requirement is fulfilled.

Please note that we are unable to accept work done for non-Theater Arts productions due to difficulties in scheduling supervision and evaluation of work done in shops other than our own.

Final Project

The Final Project will consist of a fully drafted and annotated project of technical drawings for a set, or a major special effect, or a complicated stage mechanism. It will include budgets and time estimates and if appropriate a working model.

Required Elements of Final Project

  • A written proposal for the project. The proposal will be submitted and revised based on the comments of the instructor. (2-5 pages)

  • Draftings, tables, budgets, and research and a written report to explain your solutions. (2@ 24"x36" plates of drafting and 5-8 pages written minimum)

  • Oral Presentation to the class. (During the final two class sessions)

Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2004
Learning Resource Types
Written Assignments with Examples