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Writing for Theatre

Throughout its history University College Dublin has been deeply involved in the progress of Irish literary affairs. Indeed, many of Ireland's leading writers were educated at UCD including, James Joyce, Kate O'Brien, Flann O'Brien, Thomas Kinsella, Edna O'Brien, Frank McGuinness, Éilís Ní Dhuibhne, Neil Jordan, Roddy Doyle, Marina Carr, Joseph O'Connor, Emma Donoghue and Conor McPherson.

This MA caters for emerging playwrights who are determined to:
• Enhance their creative and critical practices in a risk-conducive, collegial environment
• Engage and be inspired by encounters with key theatre makers and critical thinkers about performance and cultures
• Benefit from expert feedback from staff and associate theatre professionals
• Apply the insights and motivation engendered by experiencing a range of performances in Dublin and London.
• Discover how best to tell the stories you believe in.

This Writing for Theatre MA offers you the opportunity to devote a considerable amount of time to write, evolve and reflect on your own creative practices, in the context of a supportive academic environment which is dedicated to the analysis, exploration and reflection on modern and contemporary theatre and performance.

Course Description
• Writing for Theatre 1 (taught in association with a leading Playwright/Director) (10 Credits)

• Writing for Theatre 2 (10 Credits)

• Research and Analysis in Drama and Performance (10 Credits)

• Issues and Perspectives (10 Credits)

• Playwriting Project (40 Credits) This project includes script development support with group sessions with members of Fishamble Theatre Company, who are renowned for their role in the development and production of new work.

• Elective module (10 Credits) from European Theatre in Context, Contemporary Irish Theatre, the Body and Performance (TBC)

Professional contributors over the past number of years include Conor McPherson, Frank McGuinness, Mark Doherty, Rachel Feehily, Declan Hughes and Sophie Motley.

Entry requirements

1) Academic/Professional Entry requirements: GPA 3.08, or recognition of Prior Learning as approved by the Graduate School Board of the UCD College of Arts and Humanities equivalent to final GPA 3.08 (as per UCD Academic Secretariat 6.3 (p.29) re: UCD M.A. Taught Awards: Honours Classification Table. *In exceptional circumstances applications may be considered in lieu of academic qualification as appropriate, where evidence of training, knowledge and substantial experience of the professional theatre industry is demonstrated. An offer will normally only be made after interview.

2) IELS, or equivalent, with an average score of 7.00 over all components and with a miniumum of 6.5 in each band of the Academic Version.

Students meeting the programme's academic entry requirements but not the English language requirements, may enter the programme upon successful completion of UCD's International Pre-Master's Pathway programmes. Please see the following link for further information:

3) Interview, Audition; CV/Portfolio; Writing sample (essay/critical review); Two references (one of which to be academic); Personal Statement


Z249: 1 Year, Full Time
Z250: 2 Years, Part Time

Number of credits


Further enquiries

Contact Name: Stacy Grouden
School of English, Drama and Film
Tel: +353 1 716 7777 Ext 8604

Subjects taught

Stage 1 Core
DRAM40010: Research and Analysis in Drama and Performance
DRAM40030: Issues and Perspectives in Drama and Performance
DRAM40370: Writing for the Theatre
DRAM40480: Writing for Theatre 2
DRAM40490: Creative Play Writing Thesis

Stage 1 - Option
DRAM40020: The Body in Performance
DRAM40060: Contemporary Irish Theatre and Performance
ENG41860: Queer Frictions: Gender and Sexuality in Contemporary Literature & Culture


Who should apply?
Full Time option suitable for:
Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:
Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

This Playwriting MA will provide a range of advanced practical strategies for approaches to writing for theatre, will develop your dramaturgical skills and editing competencies, will encourage disciplined practices, and will broaden your creative expression.
This programme also supports students to develop their skills in analysing and evaluating theatre writing and performance from around the world, and invites you to engage with current theoretical and practical philosophies of dramaturgy and performance.

Teaching throughout the MA includes seminars, masterclasses, workshops, rehearsed readings, laboratory sessions, theatre visits, critical appraisals, and regular feedback from peers and members of staff and professional theatre practitioners. Classes foster a supportive, collegial ethos.

Application date

How to Apply
The following entry routes are available:
MA Writing for Theatre FT (Z249)
Duration 1 Years
Attendance Full Time
Deadline Closed

MA Writing for Theatre PT (Z250)
Duration 2 Years
Attendance Part Time
Deadline Closed

Course fee

2019 figs
MA Writing for Theatre (Z249) Full Time
EU fee per year - €7,055
non EU fee per year - €19,200

MA Writing for Theatre (Z250) Part Time
EU fee per year - €4,235
non EU fee per year - €9,600

***Fees are subject to change

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake: 2020/2021 September

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