Research course

Theatre

Institution
University of Reading · Department of Film, Theatre and Television
Qualifications
PhD

Entry requirements

Our entry requirement is usually a minimum of 2:1 at BA level. Applicants should be suitably qualified to conduct research in their specialist area. We welcome applications from arts and industry professionals and encourage prospective applicants to contact us in order do discuss their proposed research.

Months of entry

January, October, April

Course content

We are a dynamic department that fosters innovative postgraduate research. We offer specialist supervision in the discrete areas of film, theatre and television. We also support a variety of unique inter-disciplinary doctoral projects. In 2011, the Department moved to outstanding new facilities designed to support its strong practice-led research culture. The Minghella Building is at the heart of the Whiteknights campus. It features a digital cinema, two theatres and an experimental performance space, a digital sound stage/multi-camera television studio, editing rooms, audio post-production spaces and a sound studio. Our academic staff carry out cutting-edge research within an integrated, organic research culture that is highly regarded in Britain and around the world. Much of our work is in the established form of published scholarship by individual experts. Our shared vision as a team means that we also work collaboratively with each other and with fellow researchers in the UK and abroad. Some of our academic staff are practitioners and part of their research takes the form of practice. We have won seven major externally-funded projects in the last decade, employing post-doctoral researchers and attracting leading scholars, as well as people from the creative industries to work with us. Our staff are editors of leading academic journals and book series, and serve on the assessment panels of national research funding councils. Throughout the year, we host conferences, performances and symposia that bring together academics, creative practitioners and postgraduate students.

Key Research Areas

The Department’s research focuses particularly on stage and screen performance and production in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Academic staff specialize in the following areas:

The analysis and histories of cinema, including work on mise-en-scène (Butler, Gibbs, Purse and Nagib), alternative forms in film (Butler), new digital and 3D forms (Purse), US film culture and film style (Gibbs, Butler), and world cinema (Nagib).

British and US TV drama and documentary (Bignell, Knox, Woods), contemporary television (Bignell, Knox and Woods), popular and youth television and new media (Woods).

Beckett’s drama for stage and screen (Bignell, McMullan, Saunders), 20th and 21st century British and Irish theatre and performance (McMullan, Saunders, Taylor), performance analysis, gender and performance, theatre companies, directors and working practices (McMullan, Murjas and Taylor); diasporic performance, translation, and non-Anglophone theatres (Murjas and Taylor); and multimedia and interdisciplinary practice-as-research allied to written scholarship (Murjas and Taylor).

Key Research Projects and Centres:

Spaces of Television: Production, Site & Style

This AHRC-funded project focuses on television fiction produced in the UK from 1955-94. It analyses how spaces of production (in TV studios and on location) conditioned the form and visual style of programmes, and how fictional spaces represented on screen used the opportunities and constraints of studio and exterior space, film and video technologies, and liveness and recording.

Giving Voice to the Nation. The Arts Council of Great Britain and the Development of Theatre and Performance in Britain 1945-1995

This recently completed AHRC-funded project was conducted in collaboration with the Victoria and Albert Museum. Its aim was to investigate the theatre archive of the Arts Council of Great Britain. The project comprised of three major strands: histories of regional theatre, touring companies and new writing.

Staging Beckett: The Impact of Productions of Samuel Beckett's Drama on Theatre Practice and Cultures in the United Kingdom and Ireland

This AHRC funded project involves working in collaboration with the University of Chester and the Victoria and Albert Museum. The project examines the role Samuel Beckett played in shaping modern theatre practice in the UK and Ireland. The project is a pilot for a national performance database which will hold information about UK past and future performances.

The Centre for Film Aesthetics and Cultures (CFAC)

Eminent philosopher Jacques Ranciere gave a lecture at the inauguration of CFAC in 2014. CFAC will be a centre of international excellence in research and teaching of film, both with regard to its medium-specific qualities and its inherent interdisciplinary and intercultural properties.

Department specialisms

The Department’s research focuses particularly on stage and screen performance and production in the 20th and 21st centuries. Academic staff specialize in the following areas: The analysis and histories of cinema, including work on mise-en-scène (Butler, Gibbs, Purse and Nagib), alternative forms in film (Butler), new digital and 3D forms (Purse), US film culture and film style (Gibbs, Butler), and world cinema (Nagib). British and US TV drama and documentary (Bignell, Knox, Woods), contemporary television (Bignell, Knox and Woods), popular and youth television and new media (Woods). Beckett’s drama for stage and screen (Bignell, McMullan, Saunders), 20th and 21st century British and Irish theatre and performance (McMullan, Saunders, Taylor), performance analysis, gender and performance, theatre companies, directors and working practices (McMullan, Murjas and Taylor); diasporic performance, translation, and non-Anglophone theatres (Murjas and Taylor); and multimedia and interdisciplinary practice-as-research allied to written scholarship (Murjas and Taylor).

Information for international students

We welcome applications from international students. Evidence of English Language ability will be required. Usually this means an IELTS (or suitable equivalent) score of 7.0. You are encouraged to contact the department in order to discuss your proposed topic and research methodology.

Fees and funding

The University of Reading is part of the SWW Consortium. PhD applicants in film, theatre and/or television can apply for AHRC funding via this route. University and Faculty studentships are also available. Please check the University of Reading website for information and updates.

Qualification and course duration

PhD

full time
36 months

Course contact details

Name
Dr Teresa Murjas
Email
t.s.murjas@reading.ac.uk