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Division of Performing Arts

The Division of Performing Arts was founded on the belief that the role of the artist is to give beauty back to God and the world.

As a DeSales Performing Arts major, you'll become part of a tradition of independently thinking artists. Seasoned, talented faculty will guide you through rigorous training as you:

  • develop discipline in your creative and inspired storytelling
  • learn at masterclasses taught by guest artists who are at the top of their fields 
  • gain hands-on experience using the most up-to-date equipment
  • pursue exciting internship opportunities to earn valuable work experience.

These are just some of the reasons DeSales excels in the performing arts.  We love what we do, and we love doing our part to make the world a better place by bringing beauty back to God and His world.


Our Bachelor of Arts degrees provide flexibility in your career objectives. You can pursue a double major, study abroad, and find internships in your chosen area of study.

Performing Arts students interact with one another creatively in productions and in classes. Dancers take acting classes, TV/Film students shoot dance on film, theatre majors take TV/Film classes to learn how to use camera equipment. There is a pronounced artistic synergy between the three majors which makes for very exciting artistic collaboration.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Cast Act 3 Spring 2023

Performing Arts Scholarships and Auditions

As a candidate for the DeSales Dance, Theatre, or TV/Film majors, you must apply and be accepted academically and artistically. To be accepted artistically into one of the performing arts majors, you must audition and/or interview, depending on the major.
Register for your performing arts audition or interview
Actor Lawrence Gilliard Jr.

It was a joy working with the acting students of DeSales University ... I could see and hear the student’s passion for their craft and their eagerness to get out into the world and share it. I wish them all the best and I hope to meet up with some of them on set someday.”

— Lawrence Gilliard Jr., Actor (The Wire, Gangs of New York, The Deuce)

Arts in Action

Act 1 Productions

Act 1 is DeSales University’s highly-acclaimed performing arts company and features professional-caliber productions in Dance, Theatre and TV/Film.

Each year we welcome another group of eager young actors, designers, dancers, and filmmakers all drawn to DeSales to hone their craft and create art that will inspire and entertain. We offer enchanting and provocative stories that will — with the mere rise of a curtain — unlock the limitlessness of your imagination. 

Act 1 Productions
DUFF 2024 logo

DeSales University Film Festival

A celebration of the diverse range of genres and styles form the next generation of DeSales filmmakers.

March 23rd 2024 - 7:30 PM

Learn more about DUFF 2024

Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival

A leading Shakespeare festival with an emerging national reputation for excellence, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival (PSF) is a professional theatre company on the campus of DeSales University.

Each summer, PSF produces a season of Shakespeare and other classics, musical theatre, and children’s theatre. 

Visit PSF
Christian Coulson as King Richard, Justin Adams as Bolingbroke and Ensemble. Photo by Lee Butz

About the Division

The Division of Performing Arts was founded on the belief that the role of the artist is to “give beauty back to God, beauty’s self and beauty’s giver” (Hopkins).  We do so by giving beauty back to the world through Theatre, Dance, and TV/Film. We aspire to infuse the workforce in the entertainment industry with the most well-trained artists of the day.

We believe as the Greeks did, that the purpose of the arts is to reveal the truth of the world to ourselves in order that we can learn from each other’s good and not so good decisions.  Therefore, we believe that art reveals the truth of mankind.  And when the truth is revealed so is the beauty of mankind. And to that end, we encourage our students to dig down to find the truth of the story they want to tell through dance, theatre, and film to uplift humanity to make the world a better place.

Contact Us

Division of Performing Arts
Labuda Center for Performing Arts