Theatre Arts

Areas of Study

Program Features

  • Professional Resident Faculty
  • Edinburgh Fringe Festival Participation
  • Yearly New York City Showcase, "WCSU Off-Broadway"
  • Children's Theatre and Community Outreach Programs
  • Workshops with N.Y. Stage, TV and Film Professionals
  • Internships possible with New York City and Connecticut Regional and Professional theatres.

New Visual and Performing Arts Center

This stunning new facility is home to a 350-seat theater, a 125-seat studio theatre, a 350-seat concert hall, an art gallery, a recording studio and state-of-the-art rehearsal, classroom and studio art facilities.

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Theatre Arts Faculty

Deborah Lifton, Adjunct Instructor of Theatre Arts

[Applied Voice]

Professor Deborah Lifton,  is passionately committed to equipping young opera and musical theater singers with the technical and artistic tools for success. She has taught vocal performance at New York University, Ithaca College, and Western Connecticut State University – along with adjunct appointments at Syracuse University, Mannes College of Music (prep division), and Cornell University. A number of Deborah's students have gone on to notable national and international careers. In addition to developing the curriculum and teaching vocal technique and repertoire for College Audition Advantage, she is currently a faculty member at Western Connecticut State University, Ithaca College New York City and the Ithaca College Summer Music Academy. 

Deborah is regarded by her students and colleagues as a deeply caring and highly engaged teacher who is equally adept at developing vocal technique and dramatic presentation. Deborah creates a studio environment that promotes interactive learning and creativity, and tailors her approach to the particular needs of each individual student.  A number of Deborah's students have received scholarships in vocal performance from prestigious programs such as Boston University and The Juilliard School; others have performed leading roles on Broadway. Deborah is particularly effective in helping singers express themselves with honesty, immediacy, and freedom based on careful analysis of text and score. She is one of the very few voice instructors on the scene today who is equally adept at teaching both bel canto classical technique and today's contemporary Broadway styles. For additional information, please visit her testimonials page.

As an active and critically acclaimed soprano, and the winner of several national competitions, Deborah is emerging as one of today’s most compelling performers of contemporary American opera and song. “Her high notes were thrilling, her diction clear, and her concentration never wavered as she skillfully conveyed the meaning of each song," wrote The New York Concert Review of Ms. Lifton’s debut recital at New York’s Merkin Hall. "She is a fine singing actress whose expressivity always seems to come from within…” Winner of the 2008 Joy in Singing Competition Prize, Ms. Lifton’s work has also been honored by the National Federation of Music Clubs, the David Adams Art Song Competition, and the Hellenic Foundation. 

Most recently, Deborah has been a resident singer with American Opera Projects’ Composers and the Voice Series, which has afforded her the opportunity to perform in six world premieres, and to premiere the role of Angelica in Michael Dellaira's opera-in-progress, The Leopard. Recent performances include Sally Follet in William Mayer’s A Death in the Family at the Avignon Opera (France), and Millicent in the world premiere of Dellaira’s The Secret Agent at the Szeged (Hungary) National Theater, in Avignon, and at New York’s Merkin Hall, with the Center for Contemporary Opera. Her appearance as Lady Magnesia in Encompass New Opera’s production of Passion, Poison, and Petrifaction by Philip Hagemann at New York’s Symphony Space was favorably reviewed by the The New York Times. Other operatic appearances include both Susanna and Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro, Valencienne in The Merry Widow, Beth in Little Women, Ellie in Showboat, Elisa in Il Re Pastore, and Catherine in A Death in the Family (Albany Records), as well as title roles in Bastien und Bastienne, L’enfant et les sortileges, and Armida. An active recitalist, Ms. Lifton has been heard at Le Poisson Rouge, New York’s Trinity Church, the Kosciuszko Foundation, Lippes Concert Hall, Yamaha Showroom, the National Arts Club, the Galapagos Art Space and Aspen’s Harris Concert Hall. Ms. Lifton regularly performs on sound tracks for documentaries and nationally televised commercials. She has been heard in broadcast on WQXR, NY and featured in Young Opera, a series on  She holds degrees in music from the University of Michigan and the Manhattan School of Music. 

For more information regarding Deborah's performing career, please visit





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