The Meadows Division of Theatre is one of the most highly regarded training programs in the country.


Students select from the Acting track or the Theatre Studies track.


The Division of Theatre produces 8-10 main stage shows of new and classical works every year. Pictured: Artist-in-residence Will Power works with students.


Students can produce their own plays through the SMUST organization and may also apply for Meadows Exploration grants to help supplement production costs.

Claudia Stephens

Claudia Stephens

Claudia Stephens

Associate Professor

While based in NYC, Claudia designed opera, theater and dance In NYC and nationally. While continuing to free-lance costume design, Claudia moved to Dallas in 1997 to teach at SMU . During her 30 years as a costume designer, she has designed over 1 4 0 productions in NYC and across the United States. Claudia’s students are currently working in the costume industry, residing in NYC, LA, Chicago, Texas, Florida, Idaho and Oklahoma.

In New York City Claudia’s designs have been seen at Lincoln Center, Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music , Playwrights Horizons, Dance Theatre Workshop, Primary Stages, Classic Stage Company, Soho Repertory Theatre, and others.

On Broadway, including Broadway tours, Claudia has worked with Stephen Sondheim , Ann Hould - Ward and Cleo Laine , Into The Woods Nat’l T our; James Lapine , Ann Hould - Ward and Stephen Bogardus , Falsettos ; Bernadette Peters, Martin Short, Neil Simon and Sa nto Loquasto , The Goodbye Girl ; Neil Simon, Alan Alda , Kate Burton and Santo Loquas to , Jake’s Women; Gene Saks, Kevin Spacey, Mercedes Ruhl and Santo Loquasto , Lost in Yonkers: William Ivey Long , Phillip Bosco and Victor Garber, Lend Me A Tenor .

In the United States, her opera and theatre designs have been seen at Portland Opera, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Utah Shakespearean Festival, St. Louis Repertory Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse, Cleveland Playhouse, Denver Center Theater, Dallas Theater Center, Merrimack Theater, Triad Theatre, and others.

A member of Big Dance Theatre Dance Company since 1995 , Claudia’s costume designs for dance have been seen in NYC, the United States and Europe.

R ecently, Claudia has designed the southwest premiere of the opera Angels in America , with David Gately and the Ft. Worth Opera; Comme Toujours Here I Stand , with Big Dance Theatre, premiering in Lyon France, April 2009; Back, Back, Back, with Hall Brooks, opening at the Dallas Theater Center February, 2009; Before Night Falls , with David Gately and Riccardo Hernandez and the Ft. Worth Opera, opening May 2010.


BFA Theatre, University of Texas at Austin; MFA Costume Design, Carnegie Mellon University

Professional Experience

Costume Design member , United Sc enic Artists of America, Local 829 , NYC


MFA Stage Design

Areas of Study



Art History

Arts Management and Arts Entrepreneurship

Communication Studies

Creative Computation


Film and Media Arts




Undergraduate Studies

Graduate Studies



Faculty and Staff


Our Season


Actor Showcases