The ECA Theatre Department provides advanced level, pre-professional training under the tutelage of practicing professional theatre artists. The curriculum models that of a college conservatory training program whereby students:

  • study established and emerging methods and techniques in the areas of acting, movement, and voice and speech; 

  • survey notable plays, playwrights, and styles throughout history, honing their skills of analysis and criticism;

  • explore playwriting, stage management, directing, technical theatre and design;

  • develop and create original work including theatre for social change; and

  • engage in workshops led by prominent master teaching artists.    

The Theatre department strives to bring the finest work to the stage, all the while with a committed respect of the artistic process, and a strong emphasis on collaboration and ensemble work. As a result, students acquire knowledge and develop communication skills that will prepare them for post-secondary and professional careers.  Students’ lives are enriched by the study, performance and appreciation of theatre within a diverse learning environment.


To apply for Admission to the Theatre Department, please visit the Application Process Page
and click the button below to find the requirements for your Theatre Review.

ECA Theatre Review Materials

Theatre Dept Student Handbook 2016-17

Theatre Dept Field Trip Permission Form

Theatre Review Packet

Theatre Dept Course Descriptions 2016-17

Theatre Dept College Recommendation Form

Theatre Faculty Bios

ECA Theatre Dept Summer Packet 2015-16

Photos by Paul Duda



New York City: With a performance of a sonnet and monologue from Shakespeare on stage at Lincoln Center in New York City, ZOË OLIVER from North Haven, CT, a student of Carolyn Ladd and Ingrid Schaeffer at ACES-ECA, won second place in the 33rd annual English-Speaking Union National Shakespeare Competition. The Competition took place on May 2, 2016 with 55 semi-finalists from as many ESU Branch competitions nationwide. Zoë previously won the ESU Greenwich Branch competition.

Read the full press release by clicking the following link:

Zoe Oliver wins second place in National Shakespeare Competition

Read about Zoe featured in the North Haven Citizen by clicking the following link:

Zoe Oliver feature article in the North Haven Citizen

ECA Theatre Dept presents  
The Rimers of Eldritch by Lanford Wilson
May 12 & 13

The play mixes humor, compassion, anger, and suspense into a kind of social protest version our Our Town.

Arts Hall, 55 Audubon Street Ÿ Tickets:  $10

Please click the following link to read the
New Haven Register Article about ECA's production of Anon(ymous)!

Educational Center for the Arts merges past with headlines in refugee play ‘Anon(ymous)’

ECA Theatre Students Zoe Oliver and D'Mahdnes Failey win English-Speaking Union Shakespeare Competition!

Senior Theatre student Zoe Oliver placed 1st at the English-Speaking Union Shakespeare Competition held in Greenwich, CT on Wednesday, March 9th and senior Theatre student D’Mahdnes Failey placed 2nd!  Zoe will go on to compete at the National Competition on May 2 in New York City.  Congratulations to both for their exceptional work!  Please visit the following link soon for more information about the competition and video of the performances: 


Join us Sunday Night, February 28th at 7pm for the
2nd Annual ECA 24 Hour Play Festival
in the Little Theatre on Lincoln Street
Admission only $5!!!

6 10-minute plays written in 24 hours
6 Directors and 15 actors rehearsing for 10 hours
60 minutes of the most thrilling, dynamic and raw theatre you'll see this winter!!
Don't Miss it!!

Seniors Zoe Oliver and D'Mahdnes Failey win ECA Shakespeare Competition! They will be compete at the English Speaking Union Connecticut Shakespeare Competition in Greenwich on Wednesday, March 9.

Theatre Freshmen, Remsen Welsh, has been cast as Iphigenia in Yale Repertory's upcoming production of The Orestia by Aeschylus.  Production dates are:  Dec. 12-Dec.18.  Photo below.

Ingrid Schaeffer, Chair of the Theatre Department at ACES ECA, meets Sir Kenneth Robinson after her presentation on How To Create Ensemble Pieces with High School Students on a Social Issue at the National Magnet School Conference.  

Sir Kenneth Robinson is an English author, speaker and international advisor on education in the arts to government, non-profits, education and arts bodies.

ECA Theatre Alum Juliet Brett is currently appearing Off-Broadway in 'Desire' -- An Evening of One-Acts Adapted from Tennessee Williams' works: 







photo by Carol Rosegg

The evening is entitled 'Desire'.  It is a collection of six short plays, adapted from Tennessee Williams short stories by six playwrights, including Beth Henley and John Guare, and directed by Michael Wilson.

Here is an advance NYTimes article about the project, and this is the website for the theater

The play is at 59e59, an off-broadway venue on the upper East Side. 

Performances are Tues-Sun, September 3rd-October 10th.

Theatre Alum Sophie Dillon published in the NY Times!!

Read her full story, "Modern Love: a Romance that's Extra Zesty" in the NYT Fashion & Style section by clicking the button below:

Modern Love by Sophie Dillon