The University’s earliest forms of student theater were variety shows and ad hoc productions staged by informal groups or organized by class year.

As the University entered the early 20th century, students became increasingly involved in extracurricular theatre groups like Kaleidoscope, Quilting Club, and Co-Kast. In 1990, a formal program in which students earned academic credit—known today as the International Theatre Program—was added to the theatrical activity on campus.


While these three “acts” of University theater are distinctive, each has had a profoundly positive impact on students’ lives and has helped to broaden students’ intellectual horizons.

This online exhibition presents an abbreviated version of the exhibition “All the School’s a Stage,” which was on display in 2014-15. The research and writing for that exhibit was the work of its student curator David Bates (UR 2014, Take 5); special thanks are due to Russell A. Peck and Nigel Maister for their advice and historical insights.