Theatre Design & Production Workshop

MPulse Theatre Design & Production Workshop gives students firsthand experience with multiple aspects of theatrical production. Topics covered vary each year, but may include scenic painting, costume crafts, stage management, lighting, sound, props, and portfolio preparation for college applications. All participants will rotate through each workshop offered over the two week session, with weekend activities including specialized workshops, connecting with other MPulse students, and exploring Ann Arbor. By the end of the program, participants will produce creative works to take home that may be the basis for inclusion in a design and production portfolio.

Dates: June 16 – 29, 2024
Tuition (Including Room & Board): $3,830

Application Status: OPEN
Non-Refundable Application Fee: $75

Priority Application Deadline: February 1, 2024*
Priority Admissions Notification: March 1, 2024

*Applications will remain open until the program is full. Rolling application submissions will be reviewed on a monthly basis. Please check the application status above to see if we are still accepting applications on a rolling basis.


Jess Fialko

Jess Fialko

Clinical Assistant Professor of Theatre & Drama

Jess (they/them) is a lighting, costume, and scenic designer. They teach lighting design and production courses at the University of Michigan. Prior to relocating to Michigan, they were based in Chicago, where they designed for Promethean Theatre Ensemble, Jedlicka Performing Arts Center, SheWolf Sacred Movement, The Actors Gym, City Lit, Profiles Theater, the side project and Northbrook Theatre. Regional credits include Theatreworks Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Riverside Theatre, Iowa Summer Repertory, Penobscot Theatre Company, Maples Repertory Theatre, Hollins University, University of Northern Iowa, Birmingham Children’s Theatre, Davenport Junior Theatre, and Quad Cities Theatre Workshop. Jess holds a B.F.A in Theatre Design/Technology from the University at Buffalo, and an M.F.A. in Theatre Arts from the University of Iowa.

Program Sample Schedule

While schedules vary year-to-year, the 2023 schedule will provide insight into the programming provided.


MPulse Theatre Design & Production Workshop Application will open on October 15, 2023.

Eligibility & Portfolio Requirements

The MPulse Theatre Design & Production Workshop is open to students entering grades 9 (nine) through 12 (twelve) in Fall of 2024.

Application Requirements
Please provide a statement of intent, either by written essay or video. The statement should include the following:

  • A brief introduction of yourself
  • Your reason for interest in the MPulse Theatre & Drama Academy: Design & Production Track for the upcoming summer.
  • Explain why you are passionate about theatre & design, being sure to highlight any design and production experience you have had.
  • (Optional) Upload a sample of your work.

Students with limited experience and/or portfolios who are curious and passionate about theatre and design are still encouraged to apply!  

MPulse Scholarships

Merit Awards

A limited number of scholarships are available for extremely talented students based on Faculty discretion. Consideration for these scholarships is automatic for applications received by the priority application deadline.

Need-Based Awards

A limited number of need-based scholarships are available to families with an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) of $100,000 or under in the previous calendar year, or with special circumstances due to the pandemic. To be considered you must upload your financial aid materials by the application deadline as part of your application.  This includes:

  • Monthly Expenses
  • Previous Year’s Tax Return
  • Statement of Need

Watson Scholarship (For Michigan Residents Only)

In the spirit of the life of a graduate of the University of Michigan Medical School (1942) and Michigan physician, the Watson A. Young Scholarship promotes academic excellence and college aspiration among students with financial need. These need-based scholarships support middle and high school students’ participation in summer opportunities at U-M that seek to develop students’ interests and abilities in academic disciplines and expose students to the experiences and possibilities provided by higher education.

Watson Scholarship Application

American Theatre Wing Scholarships

The American Theatre Wing is committed to fostering a future generation of theatre makers that reflects the diversity and dynamism of America as a whole. Through the Training Scholarships, the Wing is promoting diversity, equity, and access to the arts to bridge the gap between talent and opportunity. Funding will go towards covering the costs associated with summer study and after school training programs for public middle and high school students who come from populations historically underrepresented in our industry; who demonstrate economic need, exceptional talent, and an interest in participating in after school training programs or intensive summer study programs to better prepare for future training at the university level. 

The student’s area of focus can be from any aspect of theatre from performance, to design, to writing, to stage management, and others. Through the Training Scholarships, we hope to create a strong pipeline to the professional theatre for promising artists of all backgrounds.

Learn more.


  • Application Resources: Coming Soon!
  • MPulse Policies: Refund Policy


MPulse Summer Performing Arts Institutes
Office of Engagement & Outreach-Youth & Adult Programs
University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance
Stearns Building │ 2005 Baits Drive │ Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Phone: (734) 936-2660
Email: [email protected]