The Institute of Performing Arts comprises six departments and programs whose focus is live performance.
The Graduate Acting Program admits 18 students each year to a rigorous three-year M.F.A. program that equips students with the fullest and widest range of skills that can be applied with high standards of intelligence and imagination to the realities of a working career in theatre and film.
The Department of Dance offers training on the graduate and undergraduate level to students preparing for careers as dancers or choreographers.
The Department of Design for Stage and Film offers a three-year M.F.A curriculum that prepares students to be professional designers of scenery, costumes, and lighting for the stage and production design for film.
The Department of Drama offers a four-year undergraduate program leading to the B.F.A. The program has been designed to include all of the traditional components of conservatory training and theatre study while taking full advantage of the liberal arts resources of New York University and the cultural resources of New York City.
The Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program is an M.F.A program specially designed for the major collaborators in the creation of new musical theatre and opera: composers, lyricists and bookwriters.
The Department of Performance Studies is a graduate-level scholarly department offering studies in a wide spectrum of performance—for example, postmodern performance, capoeira, kathakali, Broadway, festival, ballet—using fieldwork, interviews, and archival research, leading to both the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees.