From the investigation of the many processes involved in creating and staging plays to the exploration of key
performance practices, Drama and Performance offers a theoretical and practical learning approach to the craft
of theatre, its techniques and historical context. Its focus is on developing graduates with embodied knowledge
which can be applied in both professional and academic environments.
Through a progressive historical and theoretical underpinning of creative processes and practical work, this course provides a unique opportunity to experiment with a diverse range of working practices, preparing the ground and offering the tools for a successful career path in the performing arts. Our cross disciplinary and collaborative teaching approach aims at challenging conventional assumptions of learning experiences and outcomes within performing arts studies.
Our philosophy is to encourage critical thinking and creative prowess through interaction and dialogue between core practice, historical genealogies and current theoretical frameworks, which support the development of text-based as well as devised performance practices.
Collaborations and exchange with the other performing arts courses enables students who study on the Drama and Performance course to gain a deeper understanding of how diverse creative strategies can be integrated in the process of producing original work.
On graduation, students will have acquired a rounded experience of how live performance functions, and of the many ways in which drama can be understood and made relevant to contemporary audiences. The course provides a wide-ranging knowledge of the subject area and opens up a broad spectrum of diverse career paths.
The first two years offer the opportunities to work in collaborative, creative experimental workshops, in which students will work to find solutions to the creative staging and performance of classic and contemporary genres and texts. Bringing a range of interests and skills (eg acting, directing, dramaturgy, scenography and playwriting), students will share their different perspectives and insights. Classes will also cover theatre history and theory which will inform the decisions students make in their creative work.
Years Three and Four will involve the study of core modules and a series of options (which may vary from year to year) to focus interests in specific areas. Year Four will see the completion of a personal final project, which can be performance based or a written dissertation.
The modules listed here are correct as of April 2016, but may differ slightly to those offered in 2017. We will add any updates to this page if necessary.
You can opt to study for an honours degree over four years or an ordinary degree over three years. You will complete a range of modules, as outlined, each year.
- With a plethora of festivals, theatre companies, dance companies, museums and orchestras in and around Edinburgh, the Festival City, and throughout Scotland, work-based learning and networking opportunities are plentiful.
- The career opportunities open to students who study this degree are not only in the arts but also in all areas requiring excellent communication and creative skills.
- Electives in Years Three and Four allow you to focus your interests to suit your own career aspirations.
- Each 20 credit module has a notional 200 hours of learning achieved through class contact time in lectures, seminars and workshops, directed learning and independent study. A student usually takes six modules each year.
Introduction to Studying Drama and Performance/ Text and Performance 1 and 2/ The Origins of Theatre/ Play and Performance/ Performance and Production Practices
Theatre of Ideas and the Stage/ Space, Performance and The Spectator/ Theory, Drama and Audiences/ Practitioner Researchers/ British Theatre Since 1945/ Collaborations in Performance and Production
Performance Project/ Contemporary Scottish Theatre in Debate/ Critical Theory, Performance and Text/ Independent Research Project/ Arts Funding in its Policy Context/ plus two options from: Arts Journalism 1/ Playwriting 1/ Contemporary Performance 1/ Community Theatre 1/ Experiential Learning / plus media options
Creative Entrepreneurship/ Professional Practice and Development/ Honours Project/ Plus two options from: Arts Journalism 2/ Arts Management/ Contemporary Performance 2/ Community Theatre 2 / Playwriting 2/ Page to Stage/ plus media options
Irish Leaving Certificate:
Pre 2017: BBBCC
2017 onwards: H2, H3, H3, H3, H3
English and/or Drama preferred at Higher/A Level or equivalent. English required and Maths preferred at S/Int2/N5/GCSE level.
Access to Humanities /Arts / Social Sciences considered. We welcome applications from mature students with relevant qualifications and /or experience.
Advanced entry into Year 2 - HNC/D relevant HN programmes will be considered with B/CB in the graded units. Scottish Higher: BC at Advanced Higher in relevant subjects plus BB at Higher. A Level: BBB in relevant subjects. Advanced entry candidates meeting the entry criteria will be required to attend an interview as part of the selection process.
IELTS 6.0 with 5.5 in each element.
You may use your studies as a basis for professional practice within theatre and allied industries, using the specialisms as a stepping stone to: playwriting; directing; producing; screen industries; further training in acting; theatre in/within the community; contemporary performance practice; arts journalism; professions requiring skills in communication and creativity; drama teaching; and postgraduate study.
Katie Innes, BA (Hons) Drama and Performance
After leaving school, I did an HNC in Acting and Performance at Edinburgh's Telford College. On completion of the course, I was disillusioned with my chances of having a career as an actor so I decided that I wanted to gain a better knowledge of theatre in general then reassess my career path. The BA/BA (Hons) Drama and Performance at QMU seemed the best course to move onto as it offered a wide spectrum of classes in the arts.
The first two years suited my needs in that I was provided with a general overview of many different aspects of theatre, from technical production, to performance skills and on to dramaturgical background. For me, it was a nice balance between practical and theoretical sessions as I had come from a predominantly practical course, and the shift to theory was beneficial. During my second year, I was inspired by my scenography classes, and took on roles within our group performances as designer. My passion for theatre design began to grow, with encouragement from my lecturers.
In my third and fourth year, there weren't formal practical sessions on scenography, however the intention of the course is to encourage students to engage in extra curricular work to further their skills. This led to my involvement in a variety of shows, with roles such of head of design for the [RED]otto 2012 and Assistant Scenic Artist for the Acting for Stage and Screen show. I also sought out a summer course in design and now, in my fourth year, am attending professional placements with the Brunton and Lyceum Theatres, with the intention to go on to postgraduate study to further enhance my skill set as a designer. This course allowed me to study a variety of different aspects of theatre, and has led me onto a career path which I might not have discovered otherwise.