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Performance (MA)

Course Description

Designed by performance makers for performance makers, this innovative course will give you the opportunity to make new theatre, dance, digital and live performance work under the guidance of our team of research active, internationally-acclaimed staff who are committed to making performance matter.

Whether you are a recent theatre or performance graduate, a professional arts worker, an emerging artist, or are working in the education sector, your course will see you work with a diverse range of performance communities.

You will be immersed in an artist-centred learning environment and you will connect with other like-minded people interested in creating performance work. We will give you the skills to expand and reframe your current practices within a supportive community that values practice as research, while giving you the platform to perform your work at national and international festivals.

Take a look at Landing Party 2012 a festival of music, film and performance produced by students from our school.

- Research Excellence Framework 2014: our University demonstrated strength in five emerging areas of research which it entered into the assessment for the first time, including in music, drama, dance and performing arts.

Visit the website http://courses.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/performance_ma

Mature Applicants

Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website (http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/studenthub/recognition-of-prior-learning.htm).

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.


Your course can be designed to suit your interests and specific needs. Bespoke learning contracts form an important cornerstone of the course, enabling you to develop as a fully rounded, multi-skilled, creative and reflective artist. Your course will enhance your ability to work successfully in a range of artistic and professional contexts and it will also prepare you for further study should you wish to pursue a career in academia.

- Stage Performer
- Screen Performer
- Stage Manager
- Drama Teacher

Careers advice: the dedicated Jobs and Careers team offers expert advice and a host of resources to help you choose and gain employment. Whether you're in your first or final year, you can speak to members of staff from our Careers Office who can offer you advice from writing a CV to searching for jobs.

Visit the careers site - https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/employability/jobs-careers-support.htm

Course Benefits

The main benefit to studying this course is access to the expert teaching staff and their network of contacts which stretch beyond Europe.

In recent years our students have performed at festivals around the world - these include Sibiu International Theatre Festival (Romania), Dyonisus Theatre Festival (Croatia), Edinburgh Festival, Latitude Festival (Suffolk), Gift Festival (Gateshead) and also locally at Leeds Festival.

Our students have undertaken professional placements with among others: Guillermo Gomez Pena, Robert Pacitti, Red Ladder Theatre, Third Angel, Leeds and Latitude Music Festivals, Bilbao Bai Theatre School, Kate Craddock (Mouth to Mouth), and The Kantor Archive (Noel Witts).

Core Modules

Performance Matters 1
At a weekly evening seminar, address the issues of what we know, what we should know and how we can learn more about performance. You'll look at performance research, developing different writing registers, epistemic and expert practices, and consider what really matters in performance.

Performance Matters 2
Examine specific research areas proposed by yourself and your course mates,leading to the creation and presentation of a conference paper or presentation in a professional context.

Artist Project Major
Undertake a project in a specific area of performance, such as dance, theatre, live art, or stand up comedy. You will work under the supervision of one or more members of our performing arts staff who will arrange regular observation of your work throughout the rehearsal/making/conceptual process.

Artist Project Minor
Immerse yourself in a project which will result in the creation of one or a series of new performance works. You will have the option to work independently or collaboratively.

Option Modules

The Festival Project
Visit a national or international performance festival with and take the opportunity to collaborate in talk-back sessions with artists, directors, critics and academics. You will submit a written report on your experience.

Embodied Knowledges
We will lead you through a series of classes in voice and body-based training including Feldenkrais, Yoga, Tai Chi, Clean Language, Kalaripyatthu, Hart and Polyphonic singing.

The Artist Mentor
Develop your artistic practice under the mentorship and guidance of an established professional artist who operates in your area of interest. You will be encouraged to critically reflect on your work and identify areas where you can enhance your skills.

Choreographing in Wider Contexts
Explore contemporary global choreographic practices. We will provide you with the space to reconsider and develop your own making practices as a process of choreographing performance.

The Placement Project
Gain hands-on experience with a placement opportunity linked to your career aspirations. Placements might include working in administration in an arts organisation, engaging in undergraduate teaching or contributing to in-house artist projects, either in a supportive role or in a performance context.This is an opportunity to undertake an undergraduate teaching placement through shadowing and collaborating with staff; residencies with established artists and companies; event, project and festival management opportunities with university partners; international platform opportunities.


- Library
Our libraries are two of the only university libraries in the UK open 24/7 every day of the year. However you like to study, the libraries have got you covered with group study, silent study, extensive e-learning resources and PC suites.

- Dance Studios
If live performance is your calling, our black box and dance studios are the perfect creative spaces.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

Visit the Performance (MA) page on the Leeds Beckett University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Ellie Harrison

There were so many opportunities available on my masters. A show that I made at Leeds Beckett has toured internationally. Thanks to the encouragement of my tutors, this course has really helped to launch my career as a performing artist.

Ellie Harrison
Performance Artist, Self-employed


Postgraduate Support Scheme (PSS) - 20+ Awards

To be eligible for a Scholarship from our University you must:•Be progressing from an Undergraduate course for which you were charged the higher tuition fee applying since 2012-13 (i.e. your Undergraduate course began on or after 1 September 2012).
•Be undertaking a Masters course (students on Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diplomas, MA/MSc ‘top-up’ courses, Integrated Masters or any other type of Postgraduate or Professional course will not be eligible).
•Meet the entry requirements of the course you are applying to study.
•Be undertaking a course that is fundable by HEFCE (for example, NHS and NTCL funded courses are not fundable by HEFCE, so students to those courses will not be eligible).
•Be studying full-time or part-time for a maximum of two years (applicants to courses where the duration exceeds 24 months will not be eligible).
•Be domiciled in the UK or European Union (EU).
•Be paying your fees through personal or family resources. If you have your fees paid or part paid through a sponsorship arrangement you would not be eligible for a Scholarship.
•Be able to attend the course applied for in 2015-16.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Leeds Beckett University is offering 105 scholarships, each worth £10,000, to UK and EU students who will be starting Postgraduate taught Masters courses in September 2015. The Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme is part of a Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) initiative, aimed at widening access to Masters courses by removing barriers to Postgraduate education for students from under-represented groups. Included in this scheme are 15 scholarships to support Women in Science.

Application Procedure

You must make an application for a Scholarship alongside your application for the Masters course. Your application will be considered against the eligibility criteria stated at http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/pss/.All applications for a Scholarship must be received by the University by 31 May 2015.You must complete the PSS application form and supply the relevant supporting evidence by 31 May 2015. Failure to submit by the deadline and/or provide the necessary supporting evidence will mean that the application will not be considered.To apply for this scholarship, please complete the online form at: http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/pages/postgraduate-support-scheme-apply/

Further Information


Entry Requirements

Please check our site for the most up-to-date entry requirements (View Website).

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