• Anytime
    Application Deadline
  • 24 months
    Duration
This Theatre Directing programme at Birkbeck, University of London offers professionally recognised training for theatre directors. It is the result of a unique collaboration between Birkbeck and the Arts Council England, Equity and UK Theatre. The programme has been planned in close co-operation with a wide range of distinguished theatre practitioners.

About

The Theatre Directing programme at Birkbeck, University of London includes a nine-month secondment with a theatre company, providing the opportunity to direct and work with professional actors, and a three-month secondment to a leading drama school. Extended mentoring relationships between students and professional directors, regular observation of the course by a highly experienced group of professional directors.

Highlights 

  • Arts and humanities at Birkbeck are ranked fifth best in London, 18th in the UK and 87th globally in the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject.
  • 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.
  • Direct input of professional theatre practitioners; Mike Leigh, Vicki Mortimer, Lyndsey Turner and Mike Alfreds have been recent contributors.
  • Includes a nine-month secondment with a theatre company, providing the opportunity to direct and work with professional actors; a three-month secondment to a leading drama school; extended mentoring relationships between students and professional directors; and regular observation of the course by a highly experienced group of professional directors.
  • Our Centre for Contemporary Theatre runs a postgraduate reading group and offers opportunities to show work in progress as part of the School of Arts summer festival Arts Week.

Careers and Employability

Recent graduates have directed productions at prestigious theatres including: the National Theatre, the RSC, the Royal Court, English National Opera, the Almeida, the Young Vic, the Lyric Hammersmith, the Gate and in the West End. Others have established their own companies, such as Coney, Curious Directive, Rough Fiction, commonpractice and Red Herring.

Many graduates have directed at regional theatres, including Sheffield Theatres, the Royal Exchange, West Yorkshire Playhouse and Nottingham Playhouse, and many have assisted on productions at the RSC, the National Theatre, the Globe, the Old Vic, the Young Vic and in the West End.

Others have won awards, such as the 2014 Olivier Award for Best Director, the James Menzies-Kitchin Award (the JMK) in 2012 and 2015, the Regional Theatre Young Directors Scheme (RTYDS) Award, and the Stage Award for Best Fringe Theatre.

Possible professions include theatre director, artistic director, associate director, opera director, theatre producer, literary manager and dramaturg. 

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Course Induction (MFA Theatre Directing)
  • The Director and Directing: Dissertation
  • The Director and Production: Dissertation
  • The Director and the Actor

Detailed Programme Facts

  • More details: You are strongly advised to apply now, to ensure there are still places on your chosen course and to give you time to complete the admissions process.
  • Programme intensity Full-time
    • Full-time duration 24 months
  • Credits
    180 alternative credits
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
  • More information Go to the programme website

English Language Requirements

You need the following IELTS score:

  • Minimum required score:

    6.5

    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Schedule IELTS

Academic Requirements

You need the following GPA score:

Required score: Lower Second Class

Applicants for graduate programs must have the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA equivalent to Lower Second Class on the UK Honour scale. Admitted applicants typically have an undergraduate GPA of or better on the UK Honour scale. No exam grade should be lower than 4.5 (European grade scale) or D (American grade scale).

Your GPA (Grade Point Average) is calculated using the grades that you received in each course, and is determined by the points assigned to each grade (e.g. for the US grading scale from A-F).

General Requirements

  • Either a minimum second-class honours degree from a UK university (or a directly comparable qualification from a non-UK university), together with some significant experience of professional or professional-level theatre; or an undergraduate- or postgraduate-level diploma from a recognised UK drama school (or a directly comparable qualification from a non-UK drama school), together with some significant experience of professional or professional-level theatre (normally three years); or extensive professional experience.
  • Considerable importance will be attached to your ability to demonstrate commitment to professional theatre directing.
  •  If you are considered to be initially qualified, you will then be interviewed

Studyportals Tip: Students should consider taking one of the Pre-Master's below. these courses will be necessary if:

  • You are considered ineligible for admission
  • You need to improve your academic, study, research or language skills
Search all Pre-Masters

Tuition Fee

  • International

    15200 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 15200 GBP per year and a duration of 24 months.
  • EU/EEA

    8350 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 8350 GBP per year and a duration of 24 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.

Living costs for London

  • 1137 - 2160 GBP/month
    Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.

Funding

Check the programme website for information about funding options.

Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

The Global Study Awards: get funded with up to £10,000 to study abroad

Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS, Studyportals offers you the chance to receive up to £10000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.

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