Theatre & Performative Practices

University College Cork

Theatre & Performative Practices

Course Outline
Our MA in Theatre & Performative Practices at University College Cork is designed to produce flexible, empowered theatre artists who understand performance as a form of embodied intelligence and a way of engaging with our troubled and beautiful world. This MA provides a challenging and supported space for graduates and professional practitioners who are interested in making and thinking about innovative, cutting-edge work. We conceive theatre and performance as vibrant world-making and world-changing strategies for engagement and change through practice and theory. If you choose this MA programme you will learn to follow your instincts and explore your unique creativity, within a rigorous critical context and research environment.

With a focus on experimentation, collaboration, and composition, we offer you a unique opportunity to develop your own voice in a dynamic, practice and research-based, interdisciplinary learning environment. We exist at a crucial juncture in the history of theatre and performance practice in Ireland and worldwide; the cost of living crisis and war in Ukraine, the migrant and climate emergencies, and the movements of #BlackLivesMatter and #MeToo all contributing to lively debate and controversy about the culture and nature of performance, film, and theatre.

Our MA in Theatre & Performative Practices makes space for performance as an essential tool for social and political change and our graduates emerge ready to invigorate the cultural life of Ireland, Europe, and beyond.

Subjects taught

All students take modules worth 35 core credits, 10 elective credits, and a final project worth 45 credits. The core modules form the central shared programme of critically rigorous and creatively adventurous theatre and performative practice.

Part I - Semesters 1 & 2 (45 credits)
DR6001 Advancing Theatre & Performative Practices (Semester 2) (15 Credits)
DR6002 Composition Theatre & Performative Practices (Semester 1) (15 Credits)
DR6003 The Business of Theatre & Performative Events (Semester 1) (5 Credits)

Plus choose 10 credits:
DR6026 Advanced Theatre Practice (Semester 1) (10 credits)
DR6025 Special Studies in Applied Theatre (Semester 1) (10 credits)

Modules from other departments in the College of Arts, Celtic Studies & Social Sciences (CACSSS) where enrolment is available and approval of the Programme Director is obtained. (It is strongly recommended that students select a module in Semester 1 for workload balance reasons. Final timetabling may preclude participation in conflicting modules.)

Part II - Semester 3 (45 credits)
DR6004 Practice Research Project 1: Theatre & Performative Production (45 credits) or
DR6005 Practice Research Project 2: Theatre & Performative Process (45 credits) or
DR6006 Research Dissertation in Theatre & Performative Practices (45 credits)

Part-time option
The part-time option can be taken over two years with coursework completed in Year 1 (45 Credits) and a thesis completed in Year 2 (45 Credits).

Entry requirements

Applications will be considered from graduates of Theatre, Drama and/or theatre-related disciplines. Applicants will normally have a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or above, and should be able to demonstrate an established commitment to theatre and/or performative practices. Applicants with significant professional-level drama and theatre experience will also be considered.

Completion of the Higher Diploma in Theatre & Performative Practices (Second Class Honours Grade II or above), also qualifies students to apply. Applicants will be asked to attend a workshop and/or interview with staff from the Department of Theatre. Screen arrangements may be made in the case of applications from international students.

Application dates

Closing Date Rolling deadline. Open until all places have been filled. Early application is advised.

Assessment Info


Students on the MA in Theatre & Performative Practices are assessed through a combination of continual assessment of contribution and achievement in process as well as final performance, through critical reflections on process / performance, as well as critical writing about theory, history and context of theatre and performative practices. Their choice of final project dictates how they will be assessed, and are weighted variously between creative practice and critical writing.


1 year full-time, 2 years part-time.

Enrolment dates

Start Date 9 September 2024

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information
What can I do after I graduate with an MA in Theatre & Performative Practices?

After you graduate you will be qualified and work-ready for multiple aspects of the creative industries, both those specifically related to theatre and performance, as well as broader aspects of cultural production, administration, and the creative industries. This MA trains students in skills of making and producing theatre and performative events, in lively collaboration and always in context. These are skills that are critically and dynamically transferable to the professional worlds of theatre, dance, and cultural industries.

Occupations associated with the MA in Theatre & Performative Practices

Our previous students work in multiple aspects of contemporary theatre, dance, and the cultural industries. These include Creative Cultural Producers (theatre production, dance production, festival production), Arts Managers, Arts Administrators, Theatre Directors, Choreographers, Performers, Playwrights, Writers for TV & Film, Community Artists working in theatre, dance, and visual art as well as related industries of journalism, library management, teaching and academia.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Part time,Daytime

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