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School of Visual and Performing Arts

Performing and Visual Art Schools

Express your creativity on the stage, screen or canvas. Perform or record your own music. Bring your love of the arts into your own classroom to inspire young artists. The University of Central Missouri’s School of Visual and Performing Arts prepares you to develop your unique artistic vision and lay a foundation for a successful career in the arts. 

The UCM School of Visual and Performing Arts will give you unique and exciting opportunities to study many artistic disciplines. Regardless of your goals, you’ll gain marketable skills in the arts and experience the joys of artistic expression.

Mission of the School of Visual and Performing Arts

UCM’s School of Visual and Performing Arts develops the intellectual growth, creativity and artistic leadership of its students by combining rigorous artistic training with a liberal arts education and serves as a vital force in the cultural and intellectual life of the University of Central Missouri, the community and the region.

Career-focused curriculum

Faculty at the University of Central Missouri have diverse expertise in their respective disciplines. Many of them have worked at or graduated from some of the best arts schools in the country. Most of our classes are small and close-knit, so your professors will know your strengths and goals — and help you achieve them. 

Targeted core courses, a wide selection of electives, internships at arts organizations and professional-level networking experiences will help you achieve a fulfilling career in the arts. Our proximity to the vibrant arts scenes in Kansas City and St. Louis offers many opportunities to meet and learn from professionals who perform, teach and lead in the arts.

Our undergraduate and graduate degree programs prepare you for diverse options for careers in the arts. UCM is home to one of the most welcoming Visual and Performing Arts schools in Missouri and across the country, because we encourage all students to express their creativity and actively participate in the arts. 



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Eric Honour
School Chair
Utt 111
Phone: 660-543-4530

David Aaberg
Chair of Music
Utt 202E
Phone: 660-543-4909

Melanie Johnson
Chair of Art and Design
Art Center 123
Phone: 660-543-4903

Ashley Miller-Scully
Chair of Theatre and Dance
Charles L. Martin 113B
Phone: 660-543-8798

College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Performance and Recital Calendars


UCM Summer Arts Camps

A certificate

Fully accredited degree programs

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Internationally renowned faculty

An icon of a person with multiple arrows around them

Large, diverse array of elective courses

A teacher in front of a class

Small classes, individualized attention

The UCM university marked on a map of Missouri

Near Kansas City & St. Louis arts scenes

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Robust, year-round performance schedule



Divisions within the School of Visual and Performing Arts

Do you want to combine your love for music and performance at one of the best colleges for musical theater and music? Would you like to pursue an artistic career in performing, education or research? Do you want to carve a distinctive new path in music technology, improvisational dance, experimental theater, multimedia or design? Regardless of your career goals, your UCM professors will guide you every step of the way.


A violin player

Division of Music at UCM


At UCM, we believe our broad embrace of the arts is one reason we are considered a best college for music, whether you want to compose, teach, perform, record or be a music producer. We have been accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music since 1947 in long-standing recognition of our excellence. 

A person painting

Division of Art and Design at UCM


If you want to earn a degree from a college of art and design, UCM has a solid reputation as one of the best arts schools in Missouri. We have been accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design since 1986. Our accreditation from the Council for Interior Design is a designation awarded to only 170+ worldwide programs with a college of Art and Design degree program.

In fact, all of UCM’s programs in the arts are accredited by nationally recognized professional agencies. 

A stage production

Division of Theatre and Dance at UCM


Combining music with theatrical performance, we’re also considered a best college for musical theatre, with opportunities to learn behind-the-scenes production skills and take center stage.
When you study at UCM for theatre or dance, you’ll be able to hone your craft and excel as a teacher or to create and perform your own choreographed pieces. Our college for Theatre and Dance presents some of the region’s finest theatrical and dance performances. We are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre, further enhancing our status as a best college for musical theatre.


At the University of Central Missouri, you’ll learn to use creative expression to better convey your personal passions. Unlike some arts schools, the UCM School of Visual and Performing Arts welcomes all students with creative interests — arts majors, minors, grad students and hobbyists alike. 


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