HISTORY OF THE THEATRE ARTS AND MUSIC DEPARTMENT
The Department of Theatre Arts and Music was founded in the year 2001. The B.A. Theatre Arts programme is an offshoot of the Diploma in Theatre, Television and Radio Productions which was under the Department of English. The success of the Diploma programme under the Department of English stimulated the then VC, Professor Fatiu Ademola Akesode to facilitate the creation of a full fledged Department of Theatre Arts and Music.
Thus, during the 2000/2001 academic session, the curriculum of the programme was submitted to the University Senate, and it was approved precisely in 2001. However, at about the same time, another Lecturer, Dr. Femi Faseun (then Mr. Femi Faseun) who newly joined the Department of Religions, LASU and had also prepared curricular for Diploma in Music and B.A in Music which were also approved by the Senate. The University Senate therefore, decided to run the two programmes in the same Department with separate units without tampering with the two curricular. After several discussions, the nomenclature “Department of Theatre Arts & Music” was adopted. With this, the Department began the admission of students in the 2001/2002 academic session under the headship of Dr. Femi Faseun as the pioneering Head of department.
There was no difficulty in getting candidates as the first set of the Diploma in Theatre, Television and Radio Production were admitted as Direct Entry students while the UME students were also admitted. The music programme also began with students admitted both through Direct Entry and UME.
In its fifteen years of existence, the B.A. Theatre Arts and Music programmes have produced exceptionally good graduates who are today major players in the entertainment industry. Today, the programmes have over one hundred and fifty students who are receiving training in all the areas of theatre specialization including media arts while the B.A. Music offers specialisation in such areas as composition, studio management and technology, African music as well as Western and contemporary music. The Department has a crop of academic and technical staffs who are driven by excellence and who recognize the competitiveness of the 21st century. To this end, most of the academic staff have embarked on developmental programmes especially the requisite doctoral programme.
The curricular of the programmes have been reviewed to prepare students for the challenges of a fast changing world. Their scope has been expanded to include PGD, M.A, M.Phil/PhD and PhD programmes to train people at the higher levels of university education. The curricular for the postgraduate programmes in Theatre Arts and Music have been approved by the Senate in 2014. It is my hope that these curricular will impact positively on the arts and cultures of Lagos State and more importantly on the fast- growing entertainment industry which is obviously becoming one of the largest employers of labour after the government and the telecom industry.