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The costume design and technology program at OCU is based in preparing our students to effectively visualize, communicate, and realize their own concepts for professional theatre. Courses in costume design cover discussion, style, and the presentation of ideas, as well as the research and historical interpretation involved in design for the stage. Students learn how to successfully implement their designs, aided by the knowledge and guidance of our costume designer and fully staffed costume shop.

Student Testimonial: Costume Design

Throughout their four years, costume design and technology majors receive hands-on experience in the theatre costume shop- led by our costume shop manager, a full-time cutter/draper, and two professional stitchers. Each semester they will have the opportunity to assist or design for the School of Theatre and School of Music main stage seasons, which include Opera, Musical Theatre, Contemporary Theatre, and Classical Theatre styles. Costume design students study rendering techniques, fashion history, design history, and text analysis, as well as construction and patterning techniques; they also have the opportunity for craft, makeup, and hair design studies within the major. Majors are also encouraged to present at annual regional and national conventions in order to receive additional professional feedback on their work.


  • In the design/production core curriculum costume emphasis students take classes in a variety of areas including scenery, lighting and stage management. Costume classes in the core include Costume Construction, Costume Lab, Drawing and Rendering, Costume Design, and History of Costume.
  • Students who emphasize in costumes take advanced level courses in Costume Design II, Costume Technology, Costume Patterning, and Costume/Prop Crafts.

Costume Design II—a deeper study of design for different genres, character development, and rendering style.

Costume Technology—an advanced construction course expanding sewing skill into techniques used in historical garments

Costume Patterning—a study of how to take historical research and/or a designer’s rendering and translate it to a 3D garment. Techniques in draping and flat patterning.

Costume/Prop Crafts—techniques in building from unconventional materials. Millinery (hats & headpieces), dyeing and painting, armor, etc…

Production Opportunities & Internships

  • Each costume emphasis student is assigned to 2 productions every semester in the areas of costume design, assistant design, and/or wardrobe.
  • The costume area designs and produces 4-6 productions per semester including musicals, operas, and plays. Each student has the opportunity to work on a variety of genres, styles, and time periods throughout their experience at OCU.
  • In addition to the School of Theatre and School of Music productions, the costume shop offers costume rentals to community theatres and other schools, which students often work on as well.
  • Many students are work-studies in the costume shop, which are paid hourly positions. While working in the shop students learn how to pull, alter, and construct costumes for the current productions.
  • Students are encouraged to find costume related internships each summer. Students may work locally or nationally in a professional theatre setting. Past internships include: Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park, Community Performance Series-Potsdam, NY, Maine State Music Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Santa Fe Opera, Montana Shakespeare in the Parks and many more.


  • The costume area currently has partnerships with Oklahoma Children’s Theatre, Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, and OKC Broadway.
  • Our students work as Costume Designers, Assistant Costume Designers, and Wardrobe Supervisors on co-productions between OCU and Oklahoma Children’s Theatre
  • Our students work paid positions as wardrobe crew on Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma productions and national tours in the OKC Broadway series at the Civic Center Music Hall.