The Masters in Playwriting & Dramaturgy gives you a practical and theoretical engagement with the many forms of writing and production for theatre. The programme is designed for those wishing to develop playwriting skills and knowledge of script development and support, opening the way to many theatre roles, including dramaturgy.
Our programme is the only one in Scotland that combines playwriting with dramaturgy. You will undertake core practical playwriting courses and core dramaturgy courses before choosing to specialise in one pathway.
A significant part of the programme is delivered by professional writers and dramaturges. This programme also includes the opportunity for playwrights to develop a major script, through workshops and staged readings with actors and directors.
Core teaching is delivered in two semesters, followed by an independent desk- or practice-based project.
Our core courses introduce you to the foundations of both playwriting as a craft, and dramaturgy as a historical and contemporary practice.
In addition, core courses develop other skills useful to the role of the dramaturg and the practitioner, including critical reading, writing and reflection, independent research skills (such as archival and audience research), and presentation skills.
These courses will also prepare you to pursue doctoral study in the future.
The design of the Playwriting & Dramaturgy programme is intended to develop both the practical and critical skills of students. There is both subject-specific development (including knowledge of playwriting as a craft and dramaturgy as a role, working knowledge of the playwriting process, in-depth knowledge of plays and processes of textual and production analyses) alongside more generic skills development (including presentation skills – written and oral, a capacity for critical reflection, project management, team work, and independent research skills).
The role of the dramaturg is becoming increasingly recognised within the theatre industries, as is the capacity of playwrights to apply their skills and knowledge to other tasks (including, for example, providing script development support for emerging writers). This programme aims to equip playwrights and potential dramaturges with knowledge of other writing roles in theatre.
The critical components of this programme also provide a good foundation for students wishing to progress to doctoral study.
Graduates of this programme have gone on to become commissioned playwrights, production dramaturges, theatre critics, literary advisors, doctoral students, theatre makers and academics.
Delve into the world of the London playwright on a postgraduate degree that gives you the opportunity to write and perform a staged reading of a full-length play.
Playwriting gives you the space, time and support needed to write your first full-length play. The Degree delves into the world of the playwright – reading and watching live theatre in London, investigating the fringe and new writing ‘scene’.
This Master's programme also offers a range of practical exercises to challenge and inspire you before writing your own final piece.
Drama St Mary’s offers a range Drama training programmes at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Our courses aim to offer the very best academic and practical instruction, underpinned by a supportive university environment. The programmes are taught by an experienced team of academics and a collection of professional visiting practitioners.
London is the theatre capital of the world, allowing you to benefit from a diverse variety of theatre and art. The degree expands on our established links with London theatre venues and organisations, giving you the most relevant and up-to-date training.
Please check our website for more information about entry requirements, tuition fees and student funding.
Drama St Mary’s graduates have gone on to work in a range of related arts industries. Our courses prepare students to find consistent, professional work in their chosen field.
The module The Business of Playwriting aims to introduce students to a range of new writing networks as well as look closely at funding for projects, commissions, publishing and being a writer every day.
Aspiring playwright? Teacher, director, actor or theatre enthusiast who wants to gain experience of writing for dramatic performance? This course is for those who want hands-on opportunities to develop their playwriting skills, knowledge and awareness. You'll develop your own plays across different forms and styles, from monologues and single-authored plays to the writing of experimental dramaturgies for live art and collaborative or devised projects.
Since we think writers learn best from writers, you'll be taught by experienced playwrights and academics. Recently the course has been taught by award-winning playwright Tanika Gupta and we've had visits from Simon Stephens, April de Angelis, Roy Williams, Dennis Kelly, Linda McLean and Duncan Macmillan amongst others. As you let established voices push you to be more ambitious and creative in your writing, you'll also explore your own voices and style. You'll explore how dramatists past and present have used conventions – and broken them – in the creation of structure, metaphor, character, scene, dialogue, image and action.
As you go through the course, you'll also work on an independently-researched project - a chance to get your teeth into an area of specialist interest. Part of the course is taught at our creative hub in the centre of London, 11 Bedford Square, plugging you into the heart of theatre production and a busy creative scene in the city.
We use a range of assessment methods including essays and performance analyses, practical projects and a final dissertation. You'll sometimes complete practical projects in groups and you may be assessed for your contribution to group work.
Our graduates have started careers in professional theatre, film and television as well as training and education. If you come to the end of the course and find yourself curious about an area of study – or want to take your dissertation topic further – the MA is a perfect grounding for a PhD, which may be fully written or include a practice-based component.
The department gives you access to other creative areas of study like dance, media and art. Part of our reputation as a creative campus comes from this cross-pollination of studies and disciplines, so you'll have a good chance to push into those fields and gain knowledge of theatres and the performance scene in London and beyond. You'll leave the MA able to navigate an intense and growing field with credibility and creativity.
Our Creative Writing programme is suitable for writers who want to develop their practice and complete a full length piece of work, or for experienced playwrights who wish to gain a familiarity with writing for the screen, or experienced screenwriters who wish to gain a grounding in theatre writing. It is also suitable for writers who while continuing with their own practice, will work in development roles in the film, TV, theatre and related industries such as literary agencies.
Our programme has been designed, with input from a range of playwrights and screenwriters, to provide the optimum environment for students to complete a full length play or feature film script to a high standard.
As the programme is taught in the evening, we welcome applications from mature students with work and family commitments who are committed to writing a full length play or screenplay over two years.
Creatively stimulating, challenging and above all practical, this innovative two-year Creative Writing programme taught during the evening, provides a supportive and thought-provoking environment for playwrights and screenwriters to explore their ideas, develop their craft and finish a full-length work to a high standard.
You will develop as a writer and sharpen your understanding of what's working and what isn't. No single style or genre is prescribed; the ethos of the programme is excellence and diversity.
You will get to understand writing choices in the work of leading playwrights and screenwriters. You will work with actors and directors from London's new writing theatres, and receive guest talks from agents, producers and artistic directors.
By the end of the course, you will have taken a full-length play, screenplay or television pilot through a number of drafts, working as professional writers do. This play or screenplay will be your calling card. You will receive a performed reading of an extract of your work and a professional script report.
The Creative Writing (Playwriting and Screenwriting) MA is accredited by Skillset, the Creative Industries’ Sector Skills Council which means that students are eligible for the BAFTA Scholarship programme – successful applicants receive a bursary of up to £10,000, a BAFTA mentor, access to BAFTA events, plus a paid work placement at Warner Bros UK.
The course has strong ties with leading playwrights and screenwriters. Recent visiting speakers include:
Richard Bean, Alan Bennett, Ronan Bennett, J Blakeson, Adam Brace, Laurence Coriat, Rib Davies, David Edgar, Martha Fiennes, Andrea Gibb, Tony Grisoni, Stuart Hazeldine, Dennis Kelly, Mike Leigh, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Patrick Marber, Paul Mayeda Berges, Nicholas McInerny, Anthony Neilson, Diane Samuels, Paul Sirett, Ali Taylor, Sue Teddern, Colin Teevan, Timberlake Wertenbaker, and Roy Williams.
You will have the opportunity to meet agents, producers, directors, and authors on screenwriting. Recent guests have included:
Linda Aronson, Katie Battcock, Matthew Bates, Paul Basset Davies, Camilla Bray, Ruth Caleb, Julian Friedmann, Tony Garnett, Lisa Goldman, Fin Kennedy, Kate Leys, Nick Marston, Margaret Matheson, Jeremy Mortimer, George Perrin, Simon Shaps, David Thompson, Neil Quinn, Mervyn Watson and Katie Williams.
Our Creative Writing masters course is taught and run by professional working writers and you will be mentored by a professional working playwright or screenwriter for the whole of year two.
You will be taught intensively for six hours per week in year one and in the second year you choose to write either a full length play, or screenplay, or a pilot for an original television series.
This playwriting and screenwriting course is based around a mix of practical workshops, seminars and lectures. All this is supported by one-to-one tutorials and by independent study: notably reading and preparing presentations on set texts and performing set writing exercises. As the course progresses, the emphasis shifts to independent study and is supported by workshops and one-to-one tutorials.
Central to this Creative Writing masters course is the requirement to finish a full-length play or screenplay. The course culminates in a showcase of your work to an audience of industry professionals and other interested parties.
Assessment includes participation in lectures, seminars and workshops; of work on presentations; set exercises and own play or screen script proposal.
Many of our Creative Writing graduates from play and screenwriting go on to have their work performed professionally and have won many awards and nominations. Since the beginning of 2015 over 40 students and alumni have had plays performed.
Some recent examples include
Our graduates have had plays performed in London at the Old Vic, Arcola, Old Red Lion, Southwark Playhouse, Globe and White Bear theatres; as well as in Australia, New York, the Netherlands and Afghanistan.
The MLitt in Playwriting and Screenwriting is a one-year taught programme run by the School of English. The course consists of two semesters with taught components followed by an individual creative writing project taking place over the whole year, but with particular focus during the last three months.
The MLitt will provide you with technically-oriented tuition by leading contemporary playwrights and world-class academics, with an emphasis on best practice in recent and contemporary writing.
Those interested in writing prose or poetry may instead wish to consider taking the Creative Writing MLitt.
Teaching methods include seminars, workshops and individual tutorials. Class sizes typically range from three to ten students, ensuring high levels of individual attention. Modules are assessed through sample scenes, play scripts, screenplays and essays.
Students will participate in a number of theatre visits and will be required to meet additional costs of approximately £200.
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue which is for the 2017–2018 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2018 entry.
Led by a professional playwright, this unique programme focuses on the practical exploration of the theory and craft of writing for performance. It explores how a script is written to be interpreted by the key creative artists in theatre and how that script plays out in space and time in front of an audience.
Through seminars, tutorials, workshops and professional master classes (led by some of Europe’s leading playwrights and theatre artists), you will develop an understanding of live performance theory, self-motivation and the focus necessary to work as an independent artist within the theatre industry.
Edinburgh has a buzzing theatre scene and the programme draws on this to culminate in a public, professional reading of your work in progress at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
The programme will be taught through a combination of seminars, workshops, independent study, one-to-one supervision and professional master classes. There will also be regular theatre visits.
A central component of the programme will be development workshops with professional actors and established directors, focusing on your own work. You will also work with the performing artists-in-residence, who will offer workshops in each semester. Over two semesters you will take three compulsory courses and one option course.
On completion of these courses, you will produce a major piece of performance writing, supported by one-to-one supervision and development workshops, to be given a professional reading at the end of the programme.
Option courses may include:
Students who successfully complete this programme will:
This highly practical programme allows you to forge valuable links within Edinburgh’s performing arts community. You may choose to use the research skills you have developed to pursue advanced study, or seek a role within the theatrical field.
The transferable skills you gain from your studies, such as communication, research and project management will be valuable to your career development whatever path you choose.
This highly successful programme offers specialist pathways in Playwriting and Dramaturgy. We concentrate on the process of writing for live performance, together with an ongoing evaluation of the work in process. Through practice and reflection, we enable you to establish a distinctive, individual approach as both a writer and dramaturge. Projects include site-specific work, writing for a specific audience, verbatim theatre and interdisciplinary collaboration.
We support the development of texts for performance, alongside intellectual understanding of the diverse forms and contexts in which live performance can be made and the writer/dramaturge’s role in this. We examine texts from a wide range of periods and cultures. We engage with work that is innovative, or which challenges established notions of practice.
Dramaturgs and playwrights study side by side, and examine creative and dramaturgical issues from various perspectives as writers, spectators and creative collaborators. There are opportunities to collaborate on an Interdisciplinary Project with MA Performance Makers and composers from the Department of Music. Final project texts, performed and directed by industry professionals, are presented at the Soho Theatre in London, attended by key industry representatives. Graduates are highly successful in obtaining commissions, dramaturgy posts and artistic directorships. Recent successes include:
All students receive Professional Orientation and support towards career development.
All students take the Writing Projects module: you will work on three diverse, short playwriting projects. Each addresses particular generic issues that relate to writing for live performance, and you will engage with the specific challenges and demands of differing circumstances of text development and production. These will vary from year to year, but they are likely to be selected from the following:
You will also take the Dramaturgy module, which has two main elements: analysis of dramatic text (these will include classics and modern classics, as well as new plays); and analysis of live performance seen by the group (including some visual, environmental or non-text-based work). During the module you will assemble a portfolio of critical analyses and creative writing projects for assessment.
You will also take one contextual module alongside students from other Masters programmes, to be selected from a list of options that will vary from session to session.
You will develop your work on Dramaturgy with the term-long practical workshop module Creative Intervention in Text. This will examine: translation; adaptation of work from other media for live performance; and the re-writing and/or adaptation of extant plays; planning and curating seasons of performance work. You will assemble a portfolio of creative projects for assessment.
You also start work on your Final Project the personal Dissertation-equivalent project that will be the core of your work for the next six months). Weekly seminars and workshops will examine themes relevant to the range of projects chosen, and a first draft or outline will be produced. Each project will be the focus of individual tutorials, and then a class workshop led by a guest dramaturg, director or playwright as appropriate. You will then plan the next phase of the research or development of your project.
You also take another option from the list of contextual modules shared with students from other Masters programmes.
You will present the second draft of your project for another phase of tutorials and group workshops.
Playwriting projects will then be prepared for some form of public rehearsed reading or scratch performance, in extract form – with the writers involved in all aspects of the work.
Dramaturgy projects will be given practical support of an appropriate, equivalent kind. You will further develop your work, with tutorials and workshops and public presentation of work as appropriate, before writing and submitting the finished project.
Throughout the year, various seminars and workshops will examine diverse issues that affect writers today, and these will be led by visiting professionals as appropriate.
We deploy a range of assessment approaches, each appropriate to the module taken. Students taking Writing Projects will submit three short playtexts for assessment. Dramaturgy is assessed by a portfolio of analytic reviews, and Creative Intervention in Text by a series of short creative writing projects and writing exercises. Each of the contextual option modules is assessed by a 4,000 word essay. Final Project leads to the production of a playtext (Playwriting), or a Dissertation or equivalent practical project (Dramaturgy).
Numerous playwrights completing this programme receive high-level professional development opportunities, commissions, awards and full-scale productions of their work at major new writing centres in the UK, USA and in continental Europe. Many also work for at least part of the time in the fields of script development (for theatre and television), and in theatre publication.
Recent playwriting alumni include:
In each of these cases the award-winning play was the writer’s Final Project from this programme.
Dramaturgy alumni work in professional literary management for mainstream and fringe building-based companies, as well as on freelance script development programmes in the UK and internationally. These include:
The new MLitt in Creative Writing course is for writers who wish to draw on the benefits of workshops with peers and tutors while developing their ideas. It combines the features of both a research-based and taught masters course.
Throughout the course, creative industry experts lead core creative writing classes and skills-focused projects and workshops. Specialist related modules are available and the course comes to an end with a dissertation. This gives students the opportunity to work on an extended creative project which you will develop on a one-to-one basis with your tutor.
Staff at the University of Strathclyde can offer specialist tuition in a wide range of genres including:
The course consists of six classes that are 20 credits each and a dissertation worth 60 credits. Four of the classes will be creative writing-specific, and two will be electives that may be chosen from an approved list of other masters level courses offered by the University.
The content of the Creative Writing workshops in semester 1 and 2 partly depends on the nature of the creative projects individual students wish to develop. Tutors will suggest a supportive programme of relevant reading and common issues for discussion and analysis. The main aim of these student-led workshops will be to provide a supportive framework for the development and review of student writing, regardless of genre.
The Skills Workshop in semester 1 focuses on the idea of the 'writing life'. It prepares you for the practical side of literary development, as well as opening up options you may not already have considered for yourself. It will include topics such as:
The Skills Project (scheduled for semester 2) consists of an individual project chosen and developed in discussion with a course tutor. This will build on chosen aspects of the first semester Skills Workshop classes that interest you.
Options 1 and 2 above refer to the two electives worth 20 credits each that you can chose from other University masters courses including the Masters in Literature, Culture and Place or the new MSc in Gender Studies.
During semester 2, students will meet several times on a one-to-one basis with tutors to determine the nature and scope of the dissertation which you will write over the course of the summer.
Students will submit creative work for formal assessment in each of the core workshops. This will take the form of short fiction, poetry or playwriting, depending on the student's chosen area of specialisation.
The creative writing skills project will involve students selecting a topic covered during the skills workshop and developing a project in discussion with tutors on a one-to-one basis. The form of assessment for this component will be dictated by the nature of the skills project.
The final dissertation will take the form of an extended piece of creative writing (fiction, poetry or playwriting) and build on work developed in one of the two creative writing workshops. It will be developed in discussion with tutors on a one-to-one basis.
Graduates from creative writing subjects at the University of Strathclyde have gone into writing, publishing, teaching, journalism and may other professions. Some graduates have also gone on to further their skills by undertaking a PhD. Other have chosen to become self-employed as tutors.
Writers who have taken masters and/or doctoral qualifications in creative writing at Strathclyde include Louise Welsh, Rachel Sieffert, Beatrice Colin and Colette Paul.
This Master's degree in London Theatre explores London; the world’s stage. Learn from a range of relevant industry professionals and dedicated research-active academics.
The London Theatre postgraduate programme is designed for students who have a thirst to understand the unique contribution that London theatre makes to the development of theatre practices in the UK and why London is recognised as an international centre for theatre development.
This degree gives you opportunities to explore the diverse and ever-changing nature of the theatre scene and critically comment on it through academic study and professional theatre criticism.
Drama St Mary’s is a thriving unit of undergraduate and postgraduate Drama training. Our courses aim to offer the very best academic and practical training within a supportive, university environment. Our programmes are delivered by a strong core team of academics and a wide range of professional visiting practitioners.
Studying in London means that you can take full advantage of the staggering array of diverse theatre and art available in the theatre capital of the world. This postgraduate programme expands on established links with London theatre venues and organisations to give you the most relevant and up to date training.
Please check our website for more information about entry requirements, tuition fees and student funding.
Drama St Mary’s graduates have gone on to work in a range of related arts industries. Our courses prepare students to find consistent, professional work in their chosen field.
The module London Fringe introduces you to the area of London theatre where you are most likely to find work in your initial career as a theatre writer, critic or researcher
Have you been writing creatively for a while and feel the need for some professional support? Do you wish to be read by like-minded people? Do you sense that you can write but struggle with the mechanics of form and structure? Do you harbour a desire to see how far your writing can get you? Do you dream of being a published author?
For 13 years, our MA Creative Writing has been enabling students to achieve some, if not all, of these goals. In 2016 alone, 11 of our graduates published novels with major publishing houses.
The course is taught through small, dynamic seminars and one-to-one tuition. We offer modules in fiction writing and options in playwriting, poetry, screenwriting and creative non-fiction, and practical courses on publishing, producing and editing creative work.
To find out more, read our programme handbook (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/english/current-students/postgraduate/).
You will taught by successful, published authors and practitioners, including:
- Julia Bell
- David Eldridge
- Richard Hamblyn
- Russell Celyn Jones
- Toby Litt
- Luke Williams
- Benjamin Wood
- Jonathan Kemp.
Visit the website http://www.bbk.ac.uk/study/2016/postgraduate/programmes/TMACWRIT_C/
Birkbeck is one of the world’s leading research-intensive institutions. Our cutting-edge scholarship informs public policy, achieves scientific advances, supports the economy, promotes culture and the arts, and makes a positive difference to society.
Birkbeck’s research excellence was confirmed in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/news/ref-results/), which placed Birkbeck 30th in the UK for research, with 73% of our research rated world-leading or internationally excellent.
In the 2014 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.
Read about Birkbeck research that enriches our experience and understanding of our shared history, culture and art (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/arts/research).
- Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 11th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2015-16 World University Subject Rankings.
- Aims to develop the craft of fiction at a professional level and includes practical courses on publishing, producing and editing creative work.
- In addition to working with the established writers who teach the degree, you will have contact with industry professionals, such as publishers and literary agents, who offer a series of platform discussions in the summer term.
- In the 2014 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.
- Our Department of English and Humanities (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/english) is a lively centre of world-class research and teaching.
- We offer a range of world-class research resources (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/english/study-here/world-class-research-resources).
- Our annual creative writing magazine, The Mechanics' Institute Review, is edited by Birkbeck MA Creative Writing students and features writing from the course as a showcase for the degree, with wide distribution beyond Birkbeck to literary agents, publishers, etc.
- Read an account of how our students created the most recent issue of The Mechanics' Institute Review (http://blogs.bbk.ac.uk/george/2014/10/07/editing-the-mechanics-institute-review-11/).
- MIROnline is an interactive website, edited by PhD students and volunteers, with all the latest news and writing from this programme and beyond.
- Find out more about our range of world-class research resources (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/english/our-research).
- Watch videos of our postgraduate students discussing their experience of studying at Birkbeck (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/mybirkbeck/get-ahead-stay-ahead/student-experience-videos).
Teaching is seminar-based. Each session is generally 2 hours, and there are further regular one-to-one tutorials throughout the year.
4 short creative pieces with critical essays (50%). A dissertation (15,000 words) in one of the following genres: a novella, novel or collection of short stories, with a preface of 3000 words (50%).
Birkbeck Creative Writing graduates include:
Melissa De Villiers
A. J. Grainger
Graduates go in to careers in editing, teaching, and writing professionally. Possible professions include creative writer, magazine or newspaper journalist, or editorial assistant. This degree can also be useful in becoming an academic librarian, English as a second language (ESOL) teacher, or information officer.
Find out more about these professions (http://www.prospects.ac.uk/options_with_your_subject.htm).
Find out more about the destinations of graduates in this subject (http://www.bbk.ac.uk/prospective/careers-and-employability/department-of-english-and-humanities).
We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.
Find out how to apply here - http://www.bbk.ac.uk/prospective/postgraduate/apply