It is predominantly an intensive practical course that integrates acting, singing, movement and voice with a view to enabling students to enter the industry. Within the structure of performance training there may be opportunities to create original work and to pursue related activities such as composing, writing, choreography, performing with instruments and directing. MA research activities are designed to facilitate and reinforce a deeper reflection of individual processes, creative activities and personal skills development in a dynamic postgraduate culture of theatre practice.
The course comprises the following units:
- Performance and Communication Techniques
- Performing Research
- Ensemble Performance
- Audition and Showcase
- Contemporary Performance
- Extended Performance
- Sustained Individual Project.
Specialist lecturers and artists are invited to deliver classes and workshops which complement a teaching staff with proven and long-term experience in the profession. Emphasis is placed on acquiring and practising skills through creativity and performance within all aspects of music theatre— from conventional Broadway and West End repertoire to contemporary new writing and possibly those that involve new media and alternative theatre practices. Collaboration and teamwork, imagination and creativity are valued aspects of all our activities and are explored from many different perspectives.
Individual half hour singing lessons are weekly from September to June, in addition there is individual coaching. Exceptions are production weeks and holidays.
Term One provides acting, voice and movement classes, alongside individual singing lessons that continue throughout the year. Performance workshops and choral ensemble work are activities designed to extend these skills and lead you to a better understanding of their relationships.
Term Two includes a professional industry showcase, a unit on audition techniques in preparation for the industry, and an ensemble production mentored by a professional team. Introduced in Term One, the Performing Research unit runs throughout the term. Opportunities to develop your composition, writing, choreography and instrumental performance may be integrated into the curriculum. Term Two concludes with an industry showcase.
Term Three begins with the cross-postgraduate Performing Research Conference where you present your research findings. It is closely followed by a full-scale public production of a contemporary work, usually in the Embassy Theatre. The other performance unit is devoted to taking performance into the public arena, away from traditional spaces and may include performances that incorporate alternative resources, such as social media.
Term Four is devoted to the Sustained Individual Project, the character of which reflects the student’s strengths in research, writing, performing or creating. The research, performing and creating experiences from previous units contribute to this final piece of work.