Education and Outreach Initiatives

Literally, every student enrolled in the College of DuPage theatre department has interface/involvement with Buffalo Theatre Ensemble: 500-600 seat counts yearly. Some classes study and analyze the script being produced. Some classes have lab hours associated with a BTE production. Some classes observe rehearsals, to enhance their course work. All classes attend and critique the production. Most classes also have master classes, with BTE artists, during the term.

Some students assist with auditions, and participate in backstage interactions, as student theatre productions perform simultaneously with Buffalo Theatre Ensemble productions.

In addition, BTE artists are often asked by faculty in other disciplines, such as Humanities, English, Psychology, History, to speak about a particular show and its subject.

But Buffalo Theatre Ensemble extends beyond these wonderful educational opportunities with more learning and outreach initiatives:

Buffalo Theatre Ensemble Acting Shadows

During the 2016-’17 season Buffalo Theatre Ensemble piloted a new opportunity for select students with background training in acting and/or directing. This is an invited opportunity for some select students who are working at the level of at least Acting II and/or Directing to shadow a theatre professional and gain meaningful insight into developing a character. The program was very successful; in the 2017-’18 season we had 13 shadows, including our first directing shadow.

The BTE Stage Management Scholarship

BTE has established the BTE Stage Management Scholarship, which provides practical experience and experiential learning in assistant stage management on Buffalo Theatre Ensemble productions.

Subscriber Nights

An informal opportunity for new and returning members of the BTE family, including students, to attend a sneak peek and lively demonstration of one of the elements that inform our upcoming production. Following the demonstration, meet with other patrons and member(s) of the BTE ensemble in the glass lounge, have some coffee and pastries, and discuss what thoughts the demonstration may have brought to mind. Please RSVP to the Box Office (630/942-4000) or

2018-’19 Dates to be announced!

Pre-show Discussions

Prior to the first Thursday, preview performance of each production, there is a pre-show discussion offering insight and perspective from the production team’s point of view. We invite you to join these discussions whether you attend the performance that evening or not; no reservation is necessary. Generally, these discussions occur in MAC 140, but check back with us before you attend.

  • The Ding Dong or How the French Kiss: Thurs., Sept. 6, 2018
  • Defiance: Thurs., Jan. 31, 2019
  • Miracle on South Division Street: Thurs., May 2, 2019

Post-show Discussions

Following the second Friday’s performance of each production, there is a post-show discussion offering insight and perspective on the current production. We invite you to join these discussions whether you attend the performance or not. If you would like to attend, and are not attending that Friday’s performance, simply call the Box Office (630/942-4000) for the running time of the show and arrive as the curtain comes down for some thought-provoking exchanges between our audience and artists.

  • The Ding Dong or How the French Kiss: Fri., Sept. 14, 2018
  • Defiance: Fri., Feb. 8, 2019
  • Miracle on South Division Street: Fri., May 10, 2019

BTE High School Ambassador Program

High School patrons from local schools (chosen by their schools) are given season subscriptions, invited to a pre-show pizza party and engagement activity revolving around the production and then see the production, with other High School Ambassadors, as well as college students and community members. If you wish to learn more, contact Amelia at

  • The Ding Dong or How the French Kiss: Thurs., Sept. 20, 2018
  • Defiance: Thurs., Feb. 14, 2019
  • Miracle on South Division Street: Thurs., May 16, 2019


BTE Lunch Break Lecture

Wed., Nov. 14, 2018: Discussing Buffalo Theatre Ensemble and Defiance by John Patrick Shanley

MAKING THEATRE HAPPEN: Behind the Scenes with Buffalo Theatre Ensemble

A crucial part of a live performance happens beyond the public eye. From research to production, this course will include lectures and behind the scenes experiences with the Buffalo Theatre Ensemble (BTE) at their rehearsals. Students will enhance their appreciation for theatre by examining the many elements of play mounting and production.

  • Thurs., Aug. 23, 2018
  • Thurs., Aug. 30, 2018
  • Thurs., Sept. 6, 2018
  • Thurs., Sept. 13, 2018