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Theatre and Performance Practice - BA (Hons)

Why study this course?

Learn by doing on this exciting practical theatre-making course. You’ll build performance skills, study how theatre is influenced and shaped by society and culture, and gain insight into how theatre can be an agent of change. In your final year, you’ll be able to choose a career-focused specialism. In the most recent (2015-16) Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey, 100% of graduates from this course were in work or further study within six months.


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Benefit from teaching by active theatre practitioners, build links with internationally renowned theatre companies and learn in excellent facilities that include three fully rigged studio spaces with sprung floors.

This is a degree that is committed to learning through practice with a focus on acting and performing. You’ll hone these skills through technique classes and practical projects and will engage with theory to give you a full-circle understanding of the field.

In your final year you'll be encouraged to specialise in an area such as performing, directing, writing, dramaturgy, design, producing or business practice. This will help you develop into an employable, entrepreneurial theatre and performance practitioner.

You’ll also be able to draw upon our links to theatre companies, which currently include Frantic Assembly, Complicite, Graeae, Clean Break, Goat and Monkey, Project Phakama, Dawn State, Superbolt, Playing On and Elastic Theatre. We also have international links with universities and drama schools in Italy, Poland, Croatia and France. These connections can help you gain internships or placements, boosting your career prospects after graduation.

The course has a Facebook page with news and events from alumni, students and staff.

Assessment

There are no exams during this course. Assessment is conducted via a combination of workshops, performances, productions, discussions, presentations, journals/portfolios and essays.

Self-assessment and reflection are key factors in the process of learning and are therefore considered throughout assessment.

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • a minimum grade C in three A levels or minimum grades BC in at least two A levels in academic subjects (or a minimum of 96 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg BTEC National, OCR Diploma or Advanced Diploma)
  • English Language GCSE at grade C (grade 4 from 2017) or above (or equivalent)

Students are required to attend an interview workshop day as part of the application process.

Mature students with previous relevant experience are encouraged to apply.

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

 

The modules listed below are for the academic year 2017/18 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.

Year 1 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Monday morning
    • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
    • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

    This is a year long first year module which aims to expose students to the devising process and the performance disciplines that this involves. Students will explore and debate the content and forms of individual and group devised theatre practice in the 20th and 21st centuries. Through this they will work with improvisatory techniques and negotiate and analyse the collaborative process towards the creation of creative ensemble theatre. In this module they will work towards the creation of devised theatre and performance that involves students in practice that is inclusive, discursive, diverse and collaborative.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Wednesday afternoon
    • all year (September start) - Wednesday morning

    This year long module will explore the shifting concept of Identity and its relationship to the context of Performance. On the one hand, it will explore how Identity is 'performed', in its everyday cultural constructions and representations; on the other, it will analyse how such a concept has in itself represented a key stimulus in contemporary and historical performance practices. The module is intended to provide students with an introductory range of critical and creative strategies, which is to inform their development across the whole BA Theatre Practice programme.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon
    • all year (September start) - Thursday morning

    This is a year long module that will introduce students to an aesthetics of theatre practice through a range of small scale projects drawing on the craft based activities of puppet and object theatre. They will learn craft based skills that will be utilised and developed throughout their course of study. In the second half of the year long programme, this module will feed into Performing Narratives of Self and Devising, supporting and developing the work as they move towards their final project. Complimented with sound and lighting workshops this will enable students to understand the process and practice of craft based activities in theatre practice.

    The work done on the module will be recorded, curated and evaluated in a Project and Evaluation portfolio that will be handed in at the end of the module as part of the assessment process.

    The students will have the opportunity to further develop these specific skills in year 2 in Installation and Site. It will reference the work of companies such as Blind Summit, Parrot in the Tank, Little Angel, Improbable, Soap Soup Theatre, People Show, Doo cot, Robert Le Page and Complicite.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Monday morning
    • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
    • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

    Performance Skills is a year-long module which places the performer at the centre of theatre making. It will encourage the student to investigate the role of the performer in theatre practice by introducing them to basic performance skills, techniques and processes. It will reference a variety of practitioners. It will allow students to apply these skills and techniques in practice. It will engage with workshop explorations and text based scene study. It will begin to introduce notions of audience.

    Read full details.

Year 2 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Wednesday morning

    Excavating the Text, alongside Performing the Text, explores ways of utilising various forms of text in theatre practice. It will develop analytical research and performance skills in relation to several contemporary play texts. In addition it will broaden the notion of ‘text’ – exploring other forms of text as stimuli and introducing the ‘performance text’. The module will build on Narratives of Self – teaching more advanced approaches to performance and more systematic approaches to rehearsal. Students will be encouraged to be analytical, exploring table work and acting techniques which prepare a text for performance. They will then be given a performance opportunity, to test these concepts and skills. Texts will be chosen to complement the theory covered in Performance and Society.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Friday morning

    Performing the Text is a year-long module coupled with Excavating the Text and timetabled alongside it. It also builds on work done at Certificate level in Narratives of Self and Devised Production. Essentially it affords opportunities for students to create performance texts and to show them in front of an audience. It continues to challenge and broaden the notions of ‘text’ and ‘audience’. It will draw on case studies of contemporary theatre practitioners in exploring how performance texts are created and will focus in particular on ensemble and collaborative work. It may be taught by theatre companies or practitioners in residency. It will utilise skills and concepts learnt in Objects and Theatre and will provide models of theatre making and production which will be drawn upon in year three.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Thursday morning

    Developing from the knowledge and awarenesses promoted in Identity & Performance, this module will investigate social issues that are both enacted and questioned by established performance practices.
    A key emphasis here is on social inter-actions from a performance perspective. In this sense, social interactions are explored in the communication strategies between performance and audience, in the social function of performative languages, in the political and ideological context depicted in performance or embedded in its creation, in the function of performance with respect to marginality and inclusion, and in the sociological study of performance institutions and their organisation within the professional industry.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

    This is a 15-week module for Level 6 students, which aims to provide practical, theoretical and contextual understanding of choreographed theatre and performance work. In studio-based seminar workshops students will engage with a range of theatre and dance movement basedapproaches and applications for choreographing performance related to professional environments and their own ideas.

    Students will work towards the creating their own choreography that will be directed into a public presentation by the module leader. Critical appraisal and analysis of this performance experiment will follow and lead to an evaluative essaythat will inform the summative performance of the students’ work as a collaborative performance exercise for final presentation.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Tuesday morning

    This module functions as an introduction to skills and concepts behind directing both in theory and practice. Students will study key directing practitioners. They will be introduced to the role and function of the director, focusing on the relationship with the performer. They will study and apply basic directing techniques and explore and analyse the directorial process. Much of the work will be text based, using a set text as a starting point.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

    Dramaturgy is a semester long module designed to examine and explore the complicated role of the dramaturg. Through the module there will be an attempt to define, analyse and the practice dramaturgy with regard to a wide range of theatre practices (including dance theatre, installation and site responsive work). The role of dramaturg will be considered in an International context as an individual who builds bridges: between theory and practice; between the director, the performers and the text/script, choreographer/playwright; between artistic intention and the realities of budget; between a theatre, its productions and the audience.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

    This module will explore creative strategies in the application of the concepts of performativity and performance-as-research, beyond a strictly theatrical context. In doing so, it will promote multi-disciplinary crossovers, in particular between performance, visual and multimedia arts. A particular focus will be dedicated to the conceptual investigation of site and the creative adaptation and transformation of this.

    The function and aesthetics of performance and site will be explored in their broadest significance, making use of concepts such as rituality, liminality, hybridity and contamination and relevant theoretical references in this respect. Studying the work of contemporary and historical practices in installation, site-specific and site-responsive art, students will develop new work to be presented and contextualised as part of a self-curated event. Such an event may be organised in collaboration with professional structures, both inside the University (e.g. The Facility: Centre for Creative Practice at London Met) and outside (galleries, art centres and collaborating practitioners). In this sense, the module will represent an opportunity to gain professional skills both in the artistic and academic development of new work, as well as in the documentation and dissemination of this.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Tuesday morning

    This module aims to offer students an insight into the practical marketing of theatre arts in addition to developing their professional and employment related skills. It will introduce students to the project skills required for marketing an arts event which they will then hone and develop through the research, creation and realisation of their own performance brand. This activity may interrelate with their performance-making work on other parts of the Theatre Practices degree.

    Read full details.

Year 3 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Wednesday afternoon
    • autumn semester - Wednesday morning

    Engagement and Participation is a an Autumn Semester module introducing and exploring theatre and drama within a community context. This module is designed to facilitate the students’ progress from theatre student to theatre practitioner. The module with initially engage with a syllabus covering all aspects of workshop leading and workshop design, it will then progress to cover the emergent industry agenda of immersion and widening participation in the theatrical arts. The module will address the academic stimuli of drama as a teaching medium and address the concerns and practical implications of professional/client group communication. This element of the module will culminate in a work placement where skills and learning can be translated into experience and practice in workshop leading. The second half of the module will cover the engagement of non-traditional theatrical events which seek to extend the definition of theatre practice. This will result in experimental activity which will place the work within a community setting with a social conscience and a political agenda.

    The students will benefit for the university’s links to professional theatrical groups and bodies such as Graeae, Islington Shed, Phakama, Clean Break, International Rainbows, Lewisham Youth Theatre, various schools and colleges. There will also be opportunities for forging new links and collaborating with diverse and various community groups within the current professional movement towards extending engagement and participation beyond the ‘traditional’ boundaries of contemporary theatrical practice.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester

    Production: Practice and Performance will focus upon theatre making – conceptualisation, devising, text work, dramaturgy, writing and performing. Along with Production: Research and Realisation it will lead towards the student’s final piece of practical work that will be a culmination of all the work undertaken on the course: a festival of short theatrical productions, which will be performed to a public audience. The structure reflects current practice in the industry: the first part of the module will operate as research and development for the second part and will be assessed via practice and theory.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon
    • all year (September start) - Monday morning

    Production: Research and Realisation is a year long module which is taught alongside Production: Practice and Performance. Research and realisation will focus upon aesthetics and making – encompassing technical, production and marketing aspects. Both modules will lead towards the student’s final piece of practical work which will be a culmination of all the work undertaken on the course: a festival of short theatrical productions that will be performed to a public audience. This module will also assess the curation and delivery of the whole festival. The structure reflects current practice in the industry: the first part of both modules will operate as research and development for the second part and will be assessed via practice and theory.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

    This is a 15-week module for Level 6 students, which aims to provide practical, theoretical and contextual understanding of choreographed theatre and performance work. In studio-based seminar workshops students will engage with a range of theatre and dance movement basedapproaches and applications for choreographing performance related to professional environments and their own ideas.

    Students will work towards the creating their own choreography that will be directed into a public presentation by the module leader. Critical appraisal and analysis of this performance experiment will follow and lead to an evaluative essaythat will inform the summative performance of the students’ work as a collaborative performance exercise for final presentation.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

    Directing 2 is a 15 credit module that develops the skills and concepts learnt in Directing 1 - a pre-requisite for this module. It allows students the opportunity to explore their own directorial vision and apply skills learnt in practice. In this case directing refers to text based work. The practical work is placed within the context of critical theory, as previously explored in Identity and Performance and Society and Performance.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

    This module will explore creative strategies in the application of the concepts of performativity and performance-as-research, beyond a strictly theatrical context. In doing so, it will promote multi-disciplinary crossovers, in particular between performance, visual and multimedia arts. A particular focus will be dedicated to the conceptual investigation of site and the creative adaptation and transformation of this.

    The function and aesthetics of performance and site will be explored in their broadest significance, making use of concepts such as rituality, liminality, hybridity and contamination and relevant theoretical references in this respect. Studying the work of contemporary and historical practices in installation, site-specific and site-responsive art, students will develop new work to be presented and contextualised as part of a self-curated event. Such an event may be organised in collaboration with professional structures, both inside the University (e.g. The Facility: Centre for Creative Practice at London Met) and outside (galleries, art centres and collaborating practitioners). In this sense, the module will represent an opportunity to gain professional skills both in the artistic and academic development of new work, as well as in the documentation and dissemination of this.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Tuesday afternoon

    This module aims to contextualise the content of the Theatre Practice degree towards professional application by introducing the fundamentals of business practice as applied to the leading of performance-based projects. During the module students will be introduced to planning strategies, financial management and fundraising and business models towards the creation of a project plan. The module addresses the social entrepreneurship movement and embraces technology in these business practices and has an emphasis on collaborative learning.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Tuesday afternoon

    This module is intended to develop skills in writing for theatre and performance and to consider the ways in which texts shift, enlarge, contract and transform once they are performed. It will combine analysis of existing written and performed texts with creative writing exercises to develop informed, critical, creative writers. Students will also view theatre and performance in London and consider the relationship between the text-as-written and the text-as-performance. The work will be firmly embedded in the contemporary theatre industry – drawing on links with new writing/live art venues in London. Students will develop a portfolio of work and a completed short script. This module will make links with Identity and Performance, Society and Performance and where possible Dramaturgy.

    Read full details.

If you're studying full-time, each year (level) is worth 120 credits. 

Year 1 (Level 4) modules include:

  • Performance Skills
  • Devising
  • Objects and Theatre
  • Identity and Performance

Year 2 (Level 5) modules include:

  • Excavating the Text
  • Performing the Text
  • Society in Performance
  • Installation and Site (option)
  • Directing 1 (option)
  • Marketing the Arts (option)
  • Dramaturgy (option)

Year 3 (Level 6) modules include:

  • Production: Practice and Performance
  • Production: Research and Realisation
  • Engagement and Participation
  • Movement for Theatre (option)
  • Directing 2 (option)
  • Business Practice for the Arts (option)
  • Writing for Theatre and Performance (option)

Read more about the modules from our course specification.

“At the heart of the course were its staff. They were professionals who brought their industry specialisms to the classroom, but were also mentors who nurtured and guided us, allowing individuality and creativity to flourish... It was informing, challenging, inspiring, and always brilliantly fun.”
Tanya Roberts, former student. 

Graduate and actress Maimie McCoy of our former performing arts course had this to say about her experience:

"A huge amount of our performances were site specific, which meant we could be more imaginative with our staging. My final third year project was staged in the courtyard. I think we probably had the best teachers in the country who specialised in this approach to theatre and dance. They were hugely encouraging of everyone’s experience and opinions and determined for us to shatter the way we thought about performance, especially as most of us had come from a more traditional background."

Read more on Maimie's profile page.

There is a focus on helping you develop professional skills throughout the course. As a graduate, you could find yourself working in many exciting areas of theatre, including acting, directing, producing, community performance or theatre in education, theatre-making, arts policy making and arts administration or marketing.

Much of the course replicates working industry environments that strengthen the careers education element of the course. Staff maintain strong links with the industry, and use these to help students to access opportunities for internships and employment during and after the course. Modules in creative and cultural industries, and business and marketing will give you the opportunity to learn the skills appropriate to self management in the arts.

Between 2016 and 2020 we're investing £125 million in the London Metropolitan University campus, moving all of our activity to our current Holloway campus in Islington, north London. This will mean the teaching location of some courses will change over time.

Whether you will be affected will depend on the duration of your course, when you start and your mode of study. The earliest moves affecting new students will be in September 2018. This may mean you begin your course at one location, but over the duration of the course you are relocated to one of our other campuses. Our intention is that no full-time student will change campus more than once during a course of typical duration.

All students will benefit from our move to one campus, which will allow us to develop state-of-the-art facilities, flexible teaching areas and stunning social spaces.

Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things such as equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.

Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.

Unistats is the official site that allows you to search for and compare data and information on university and college courses from across the UK. The widget(s) below draw data from the corresponding course on the Unistats website. If a course is taught both full-time and part-time, one widget for each mode of study will be displayed here.

How to apply

If you're a UK/EU applicant applying for full-time study you must apply via UCAS unless otherwise specified.

UK/EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University.

Non-EU applicants for full-time study may choose to apply via UCAS or apply direct to the University. Non-EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University, but please note that if you require a Tier 4 visa you are not able to study on a part-time basis.

All applicants applying to begin a course starting in January must apply direct to the University.

When to apply

The University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) accepts applications for full-time courses starting in September from one year before the start of the course. Our UCAS institution code is L68.

If you will be applying direct to the University you are advised to apply as early as possible as we will only be able to consider your application if there are places available on the course.

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