Date of Award

Fall 2022

Document Type

Open Access Thesis


Theatre and Dance

First Advisor

Nic Ularu


As someone who has been a life-long audience member and who has worked in over a hundred different theatres on countless different productions over the course of my professional career, I have always been fascinated by the process of creating art out of thin air. I have watched artists undergo careful planning only to have that work thrown out during the rehearsal or technical process, or even sometimes during the last preview performance. I have watched moments unfold on stage at the last minute with seemingly no planning or effort. I have seen the reactions of audiences to moments that happen live on stage and know the varied journeys that the artists involved took to get to that point in time.

This thesis is an account of the process of learning what I didn’t know about creating theatre and ultimately learning to believe in what I do know about the theatre. Over five years of study I was involved in the design of ten productions and this document is a journey through the process from the first solo scenic design to my last and how the process for each design changed as my knowledge and experience grew over the course of my time studying in the University of South Carolina’s Department of Theatre and Dance.


© 2022, Nathan Terracio