Katelyn Tasto credits her involvement with theatre for her transformation. The university offered her opportunities to get involved and meet new people.
“I really like where I’ve ended up,” she said. “I would never have guessed that I would be a theatre major.”
Through positions with theatre shows, the student group Dramatic Action and a student worker position doing public relations with the Department of Theatre and Film Studies, Tasto is graduating with the goal of working with people and leading community-oriented programs for a non-profit organization.
Tasto is majoring in theatre with minors in history and general business.
The theatre program is small, which makes for a close-knit group with plenty of opportunities for students, she said.
“I am happy with my choice to go to St. Cloud State because the theatre department is so small here,” she said. “I think I got a lot of opportunities that I would not have gotten if I was at a college that had a larger department.”
Small class sizes allow students the chance to get to know everyone and opens up opportunities for them to be involved in the different aspects of theatre — whether it be acting, stage managing or sound, lighting or set design.
“That’s been really great. Just the opportunity to try all these different aspects,” she said. “To kind of move around. You don’t have to lock yourself into a certain path right away. You can experiment with what you like doing.”
Through experimenting, Tasto has found opportunities in the behind-the-scenes aspects of theatre.
“When I came here I assumed that when you’re in theatre, you do acting,” she said. “I hadn’t realized until I started taking classes that there’s so much more than just acting.”
The theatre program at St. Cloud State introduces students to design work, backstage tech and stage management as well as acting and directing.
Tasto learned that she had a love for light design and an interest in sound, scenic and costume design. She also discovered a knack for stage management.
“As a stage manager you are there at the beginning of the process all the way through closing night,” she said. “You’re sort of like the glue that holds all the other pieces in place. … Your job as a stage manager is to get all of these people talking together to kind of connect them — basically so that working together as this big group you’re able to produce this amazing show.”
The professors have also made a difference for Tasto.
“I’ve really liked the professors here,” she said. “They’ve been really great. They go out of their way to help you. If you’re doing a project for one class, a professor who doesn’t even teach that class will offer to help you with a project if you need it because they know you and want to help.”