Taught course

Theatre Directing

Institution
Birkbeck, University of London · English, Theatre and Creative Writing
Qualifications
MFA

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Entry requirements

Either a second-class honours degree (2:2) or above from a UK university (or a directly comparable qualification from a non-UK university), together with some significant experience of professional or professional-level theatre; or an undergraduate- or postgraduate-level diploma from a recognised UK drama school (or a directly comparable qualification from a non-UK drama school), together with some significant experience of professional or professional-level theatre (normally three years); or extensive professional experience.

Considerable importance will be attached to your ability to demonstrate commitment to professional theatre directing. If you are considered to be initially qualified, you will then be interviewed.

Applications are reviewed on their individual merits and your professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be taken into consideration positively. We actively support and encourage applications from mature learners.

Months of entry

September

Course content

This MFA Theatre Directing offers professionally recognised training for theatre directors. The result of a collaboration between Birkbeck and the Arts Council England, Equity and UK Theatre, the course provides a unique opportunity to work with theatre actors, writers and designers, while being introduced to the structural and financial realities of working as a director in the industry.

You will spend time at a leading drama school, learning how actors are trained for today’s theatre. Intensive units with expert professionals, including noted practitioners such as Mike Leigh, Mike Alfreds, Vicki Mortimer, Natalie Abrahami and Lyndsey Turner, will concentrate on the director’s relationship with the designer and the writer, and offer a practical understanding of how theatre companies and pieces of work are funded and managed.

You will then further develop your skills as a director through secondment to a theatre company where you will have the opportunity to assist on at least three productions; collaborators include the Royal Exchange Manchester, Birmingham Rep, Leicester Curve, HOME Manchester, Octagon Theatre Bolton, the Lyric Theatre Hammersmith, HighTide and the Unicorn.

Highlights

  • The course includes a six- to nine-month secondment with a theatre company, providing the opportunity to direct and work with professional actors; a three-month secondment to a leading drama school; extended mentoring relationships between students and professional directors; and regular observation of the course by a highly experienced group of professional directors.
  • The Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Scholarship will support an emerging director from an under-represented or disadvantaged socio-economic background to undertake this two-year director training programme from September 2021. The scholarship is for £20,000 over two years to cover the course fees and provide funds towards the costs of study. Visit our School of Arts postgraduate funding page for more details and to apply for this scholarship.
  • Our Centre for Contemporary Theatre runs a postgraduate reading group and offers opportunities to show work in progress as part of the School of Arts summer festival Arts Week.
  • In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF), English Language and Literature at Birkbeck achieved 100% for a research environment conducive to producing research of the highest quality, while 91% of eligible staff submitted research, of which 75% was recognised as world-leading or internationally excellent.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses and foundation programmes to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MFA
    full time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Name
Student Advice Service
Email
studentadvice@bbk.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0)20 3907 0700