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A joint venture of The Old Globe and the University of San Diego, the Shiley Graduate Theatre program nationally recruits seven students each year to participate in an intensive two-year, year-round course of graduate study in classical theatre.

In 1987, The Old Globe and the University of San Diego established a graduate acting program.  The result has been one of the most acclaimed classical training programs in the United States.  Currently the program accepts seven students each year from hundreds of applicants.  It has become one of the most competitive graduate acting programs in the country.

The program's graduates have made their mark in the profession.  They have performed extensively on and off-Broadway, in regional theatres, feature films and on television.  They have also founded successful theatre companies, written award-winning plays and screenplays, and performed throughout Europe and Canada.  One notable graduate is Jim Parsons, the Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winning star of “The Big Bang Theory.”

To find out more about the Master of Fine Arts program, please visit our website at GraduateActing.com.



“You could probably count on one hand the major training programs that are affiliated with a major theater company, this is a specifically classical training program very, very heavily centered on Shakespeare.  It’s pretty unique nationwide.”
- Barry Edelstein, Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director, The Old Globe

Meet the Class of 2019

Showcase 2019

New York and Los Angeles
Monday, September 23, 2019 and Wednesday, October 2, 2019


Photo Credits

(from left) Jersten Seraile, Jared Van Heel, Morgan Taylor, Yadi Correa, Eric Hagen, Carlos Angel-Barajas, Nona Truong. Photo by www.CourtneyLindbergPhotography.com.

The Old Globe and University of San Diego Graduate Theatre Program

Twelfth Night

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Jesse Perez

November 2 – 10, 2019

Photo Credits

Artwork courtesy of The Old Globe.

Private funding for the Master of Fine Arts in Theatre program has been contributed through a generous endowment established by

Donald and Darlene Shiley.

Additional support for the program is provided by The Dorothy Brown Endowment Fund and The Louis Yager Cantwell Foundation.