Performing Arts

Performing Arts

Whether you’re interested in musical theater, straight drama or comedy, chorus, contemporary and traditional dance, cheerleading, or vocal and instrumental instruction or performance, at Mitchell College you can find your voice. Auditions for all elements of the Performing Arts are open to all Mitchell and Thames students, regardless of major. For many of our students, the Mitchell stage was their first performance experience…and where they discovered their passion.

Add to that, our home city of New London, Connecticut is steeped in the arts tradition. Right in our own backyard, you’ll find the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, called the “launchpad of American theater”, the Garde Arts Center which hosts hundreds of artistic performances and films each year.

Performing Arts Cabaret

Fall Weekend

Day and Time: Saturday, October 23 — 7:00pm

Location: Clarke Center Stage

FREE  (no tickets required)

Join us for an entertaining evening featuring the best performers Mitchell has to offer! Performances by the Select Chorus, Dance/Cheer and excerpts from the upcoming fall play: Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw.

Mitchell College Players

Each year, the Mitchell College Players stage a fall play and spring musical in addition to other performances such as cabaret, improv comedy, and one acts. Auditions are open to all Mitchell and Thames students and roles are available both on and back stage. Recent past performances include Romantic Fools, The 25th Annual Putnam Country Spelling Bee, GodspellLegally BlondeThe Importance of Being Earnest, Almost, Maine and Vietnam 101: The War on Campus.

Spring 2022

The Mitchell College Players are beyond excited to be able to welcome audiences back to the Clarke Center auditorium for live, in-person performances from the Clarke stage!

Learn More

To learn more about the program or auditions, contact Jonathan Babbitt at or 401-864-9009.

Auditions for Theatre Seasons
Watch for information about upcoming auditions here! No prior acting experience is required, and auditions are open to all Mitchell College and Thames students. Students must audition for theatre roles each semester. 
Mitchell College Select Chorus

This group, numbering 16 to 20 voices, is a curricular, all-auditioned ensemble and maintains a rigorous rehearsal schedule of two two-hour sessions per week, with additional individual coaching in Voice and Theory throughout each semester. The Select Chorus performs for College functions throughout the academic year and serves as an additional facet of the College’s public face by performing off-campus for recruiting events, alumni and development efforts, and community activities in southeastern Connecticut.

We begin our fifth year with a strong group of returning singers, and are eager and excited to meet all the singers of the incoming class! Our repertoire includes works by Mozart, Vaughan Williams, two brand-new settings by our own Select Chorus Director Jonathan Babbitt, folk songs, popular arrangements, music from Asia and Africa, and more.

Learn More

To learn more about the program or auditions, contact Jonathan Babbitt at or 860-701-7987.

Auditions for Select Chorus

Watch for information about upcoming auditions here! No prior singing/choral experience is required, and auditions are open to all Mitchell College and Thames students.


The Mitchell College Dance/Cheer Team welcomes all incoming and returning Mariners, whether they have no experience in dance, a passing interest in dance, some experience in dance, or years of experience in dance! The ensemble presents a Showcase during each semester, offers cheerleading at select home basketball contests, and provides dancers for the spring musical when appropriate. Performances are choreographed to take into account the proficiency levels of all dancers!

All interested prospective members are invited to learn more about the program by contacting:

Jonathan Babbitt at or 401-864-9009.

Auditions for Dance/Cheer

Watch for information about upcoming auditions here! No prior formal dance/cheer experience is required, and auditions are open to all Mitchell College and Thames students.

Lessons & Ensembles

On-Campus Private Lessons

Mitchell is pleased to offer private lessons in voice and instruments through the College. Drawing upon the highly-trained pool of professional instrumental and vocal performers from throughout New London County and beyond, we offer private on-campus instruction in voice, piano, winds, strings, organ, brasses and percussion, while providing rigorous structure and accountability through the office of the Coordinator of Applied Music Studies.


The College is also coordinates the creation and coaching of instrumental ensembles of any sort, from rock and jazz to classical trios, quartets, chamber groups and pep bands. Opportunities for performance abound, and include college athletic events, gatherings and assemblies, and off-campus outreach events in the local community.


Contact Jonathan Babbitt at or 860-701-7987

About the Director

Jonathan Babbitt, M.M.

Jonathan Babbitt, Assistant Professor, Performing Arts, Director of Choral Activities, Coordinator of Applied Music Studies and Director, Mitchell College Players, earned his bachelor’s and master’s at Yale and Yale School of Music where he directed the Yale Freshman Chorus and was associate director of the Yale Glee Club. His numerous years of experience as a teacher, clinician, conductor, recitalist, adjudicator and composer contribute greatly to the performing arts landscape at Mitchell College. Visit Jono’s bio to learn more.


Contact Jonathan Babbitt at or 860-701-7987

Performing Arts Internships

When he first started as a Thames at Mitchell College student, Max Pevna would’ve never guessed that two summers later, he’d be a full-time communications major at Mitchell, performing Shakespeare at an outdoor amphitheater alongside one of the most adventurous classical theater companies in New England. Thanks to his Integrative Career Development (ICD) summer internship with Flock Theatre, Max gained a full range of experiences in the world of theater production as he helped Flock prepare for three weekends of Shakespeare’s King Henry IV, Part I. Read Max’s story.

“It’s a good way to make a lot of friends and kind of come out of your shell because you can’t just be your normal, quiet self – you have to open up as a different character and all that. You don’t know unless you try it.”

Learn more about Internships

To learn more about internships and career experiences through Integrative Career Development at Mitchell College, visit

The Red Barn Performance Space

Completed in 2018, the Red Barn at Mitchell College offers a dramatic and innovative venue for Mitchell College performances. With state-of-the-art lighting and sound, black-out window capability for theater performances, a nine-foot Baldwin concert grand piano, resonant acoustics and a theatre-style seating capacity of 150-225, the Red Barn adds a fabulous, flexible space for student and community theatre and concert performances.


Boredom is not an option.

The local arts/music/theater scene is alive and thriving

New London and southeastern Connecticut might be thought of as a sleeping giant when it comes to the arts. For art, Mitchell students have quick access to the Hygienic Gallery and Lyman Allen Gallery. The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme is a fun half day excursion and step back in time. For theater buffs, students can see a local performance at the Garde Arts Center or Eugene O’Neill Theater. Great theater options a short drive away include Ivoryton Playhouse and Goodspeed Musicals, both on the Connecticut River. Concerts at Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods are readily accessible, and the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center in Old Lyme offers a full repertoire of cultural and performing arts experiences.

And of course, Mitchell is about 2 hours from NYC and 2 hours from Boston for near limitless big city entertainment, both accessible by train.

Jonathan Babbitt

Jonathan Babbitt, M.M. | Assistant Professor, Performing Arts, Director of Choral Activities, Coordinator of Applied Music Studies, Director, Mitchell College Players

Phone: 860-701-7987

A few words on fit.


"Fit” is the modern buzzword of the college search process. And frankly, rightly so. As you consider your college experience, we encourage you to look for a place that feels right. It’s also a good idea to make a list of the qualities and characteristics that make a college and you a winning combination.


If you are looking for a college that: 


  • Gets to know and understand each student as a uniquely talented individual

  • Identifies potential and encourages students in very intentional ways

  • Fosters growth in each student, giving them a foundation for life and career success

  • Is small enough to deliver on the promise of a personalized experience

  • Goes beyond “career services” and offers a progressive 4-year career development model, partnering with local businesses and nonprofits for professional experience

  • Promotes an inclusive culture that encourages students to experiment in new clubs and activities

  • Is nationally recognized for its academic support systems, from professional content tutors (not students) to proven comprehensive support for students with learning differences

  • Connects students to service opportunities that impact their world

  • Is in a location that offers access to New England’s natural places and some of America’s greatest cities




…Mitchell College delivers in a powerful way.

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