Masters degrees in Theatre Production provide advanced training in producing theatre shows, from script analysis right through to the final show.
Taught MA and MFA degrees are typical for the field. Entry requirements normally include an appropriate undergraduate degree such as Performance Studies.
A producer acquires financing, hires staff and oversees everything from the beginning to the end of each show. So, to become a professional in this field, you will train in devising, directing and adapting a variety of shows. These may include staged plays, musicals, comedy sketches or drama.
Across all performance types, you will analyse the dramaturgy (roles and technologies) which form a production, both in their historical context and their contemporary innovations. This includes collaborating with playwrights, performers, actors, choreographers, technicians and designers.
You will scrutinise applied theatre across a range of theoretical concepts such as communications, visual cultures, sociocultural methodologies and social history. This will be combined with vocational training in areas of production management, including financial control, scheduling, planning, and health and safety.
As well as direct involvement with theatre companies, your career may span many other roles and industries. For example, your expertise would be suited to performances in other contexts, including film, TV and radio.
Within a rapidly changing domestic and international environment, the work of stage managers is becoming more complex and technically challenging. The entertainment and live events industries are growing rapidly and the need for skilled stage managers has never been greater. The evolving range and scope of where, and how, live entertainment is delivered leads to often difficult and sometimes contradictory demands and challenges for the stage management team. This leads to a situation where there is a need for graduates with more holistic and integrated perspectives regarding the management of entertainment and live events and the artistic, economic, social and environmental conditions in which they function. This course has been developed in response to this need, and is rooted in a belief that effective stage managers need training that is both practical and critically reflective. It will develop your knowledge of the contemporary issues affecting the management of entertainment and live events while equipping you with the practical skills that are essential for developing a career in the field.
The course is run in partnership with The Edinburgh Stage Management School, which specialises in postgraduate vocational training and combines a well established industry focus with successful graduate employment. It combines the best aspects of the vocational, practical and academic models.
This MA is designed as a conversion degree and we welcome applicants from non-arts related subjects. It is suitable for both graduates who wish to add a vocational stage management emphasis to their first degree, and those with equivalent professional qualifications or experience. It is likely to be of interest to those who studied the arts and humanities at undergraduate level, or those with significant workplace experience who would like to gain a formal qualification.
Teaching comprises a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, case studies, simulation exercises, and projects. You will undertake professional practice working with QMU shows and events as well as engaging with the wider industry. Your performance on the course will be assessed by essays, reports, reflective blog, portfolio, presentations and a dissertation or project (MA only). Normally, there are around six to eight students undertaking the course each year.
Each module will require you to attend classes and carry out independent work. Most modules consist of five or six hours of class time each day during the teaching periods of the semester. Where possible, all teaching takes place over three days per week.
Our partnership with The Edinburgh Stage Management School ensures an active industry focus to the course with key professional practitioners delivering master classes and practical workshops. Our location in the festival city also allows for strong practical links between the course and the many arts, festival and cultural organisations based in and around Edinburgh, across Scotland and the UK.
15 credits: Core Technical Skills for Theatre Production/ Managing Productions: Theory & Practice/ Advanced Technical Skills for Theatre Production/ Managing People & Projects 30 credits: Professional Practice 1 (15 + 15)/ Professional Practice 2 (15 + 15)
If studying for an MA, you will also complete a dissertation or project (60 credits).
You will be qualified for a broad range of stage management positions within a wide spectrum of live entertainment and live events industries. Many career opportunities are open to you. Previous graduates (Edinburgh Stage Management School) have gone on to work in theatres, performing arts organisations, festivals, corporate events and ceremonies. In addition, many now tour within the UK, Europe and internationally. Potential careers might include producing, fundraising, marketing, programming, or audience development, as well as many other roles across the cultural industries and all professions requiring skills in effective management.