• University of Glasgow Featured Masters Courses
  • Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University Featured Masters Courses
  • Coventry University Featured Masters Courses
  • St Mary’s University, Twickenham Featured Masters Courses
  • University of Derby Online Learning Featured Masters Courses
  • Cardiff University Featured Masters Courses
  • New College of the Humanities Featured Masters Courses
  • Goldsmiths, University of London Featured Masters Courses
University of the West of England, Bristol Featured Masters Courses
Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia Featured Masters Courses
University of Bradford Featured Masters Courses
University of Worcester Featured Masters Courses
Bath Spa University Featured Masters Courses

MA Theatre Criticism and Dramaturgy

Course Description


The cultural hub of London is the venue for MA Theatre Criticism and Dramaturgy. The programme balances theoretical study of theatre and performance with the development of diverse skills in dramaturgy and criticism. Graduates can apply this in academia and throughout the creative industries.

Engaging with theatre and performance practice of the past and the present, and attuned to the economy and ecology of the landscapes in which it takes place, students on this course embrace Central’s unique status as a conservatoire and a University of London college, a vibrant setting fostering the international theatre practice and scholarship of the future.

Students engage with how the city itself performs, and examine questions around tourism and experiences of living, working, and moving in the metropolis. MA Theatre Studies (Performance and the City) considers how theatre shapes and is shaped by the metropolis, taking students into the city and behind the scenes in the institutions that give it its character and potency. Study is grounded in engagement with buildings, events, organisations and practices. As such, the course is excellent preparation for work in various roles in the theatre sector; a critical approach is maintained throughout, and students develop academic and scholarly abilities.


Students on this programme take six units followed by a final independent unit. Each unit is self-contained, focusing on a specific aspect of theatre and performance.

Units may include:

Reviewing Performance
Shakespeare in London
Archiving Practices, Practising Archives
Critical Contexts
Performing Research
Cultural Landscapes.


Students produce critical work and outputs relevant to theatre sector contexts, including visual presentations, conference papers, essays, reports and reviews. In some cases students are assessed on small-group projects.

The SIP may take the form of a dissertation or a portfolio, depending on the subject matter and the student’s focus.
(Student Profile)

Elena Robertson

Why did you choose this course and institution?
After completing an undergraduate degree in the USA I was interested in a course that incorporated theatre research and economics. I also wanted to study in London, and the MA Theatre Studies at Central was the only course I found offering a mix of what I was looking for.

Tell us a bit about the content of the course…
The course explores London’s theatre scene and covers theatre criticism, Shakespeare in London, structures of production and funding, and a research project. We also have the opportunity to visit prestigious London venues including Shakespeare’s Globe and the Barbican Centre, and will soon be travelling to Paris.

Did you manage to secure funding?
I took out a loan to cover my tuition fees and I work part-time to cover living expenses.

What are the main differences between undergraduate and postgraduate life?
There’s more focus on independent learning with an emphasis on contemplating and reflecting. As an undergraduate student I reiterated what I was learning, but as a postgraduate student I create an original argument.

How has the course helped you to prepare for employment?
The course helped me to find a placement in the development team at a London theatre, which taught me the necessary elements of working in theatre research and administration.

What advice would you give to others considering the programme?
Read about performance studies, London and the theatre world. There are many hidden facets to performance and cultural studies relating to theatre; everyday I’m uncovering something new.

What are your plans for after you graduate?
I want to get more involved in development or arts advocacy.


Embassy Postgraduate Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

The combined awards add up to a total of £100,000 in available support ranging across both Open Awards and Postgraduate Support Scheme Awards. Open Awards will range in value between £2,000 and £5,000 each, and Postgraduate Support Scheme Awards will be allocated in the amount of £10,000 each.

Value of Scholarship(s)

Between £2,000 and £5,000 each


Home/EU/Overseas – Open Awards, Home/EU* – Postgraduate Support Scheme (must have been a £9,000 tuition fee payer for an undergraduate degree at a UK institution).

Application Procedure

Students interested in applying for an Embassy Postgraduate Scholarship must be holding an offer for an MA/MFA course by the deadline of 27 May 2016. All students holding offers by this date will be invited to apply for the Embassy Postgraduate Scholarships and will be sent an application form together with guidance notes.Criteria for the awards are based on a combination of merit (promise/ability shown in application form and at audition/interview) and hardship.For full information about eligibility criteria for these awards, please contact Central’s admissions office at [email protected]

Further Information


Entry Requirements

You should normally have an undergraduate degree in a relevant field, (drama, theatre or performance studies), though applications from students of other disciplines will be considered. Applications for the accreditation of prior experience in lieu of academic entry qualification will also be considered where appropriate. An offer will normally only be made after interview/audition.

Email Enquiry

Recipient: Royal Central School of Speech & Drama

Insert previous message below for editing? 
You haven’t included a message. Providing a specific message means universities will take your enquiry more seriously and helps them provide the information you need.
Why not add a message here
* required field
Send a copy to me for my own records.

Your enquiry has been emailed successfully

Cookie Policy    X