Postgraduate Research Course

PhD Drama and Performance

PhD Drama and Performance

Overview

The details
Drama and Performance
October 2019
Full-time
4 years
East15 (Loughton) Campus

Undertaking PhD study gives you the opportunity to engage with an area of drama, theatre, or performance in depth and at an advanced level. East 15 Acting School, with its growing research profile and internationally recognised research quality is an obvious home for such research.

At East 15, research degree students will undertake one of two paths of enquiry. The PhD in Drama and Performance is a conventional PhD whereby candidates are assessed via thesis and viva voce examination. For the PhD Drama and Performance (Practice-as-Research) course, candidates are assessed via practice-as-research, a thesis that contextualises and analyses the performance practice in relation to the research topic, and a viva voce examination. For guidance, areas of expected practice include: theatre directing, dramaturgy, actor training, design (scenery, sound, lighting, costume), and performance art.

Why we're great.
  • As a highly competitive acting conservatoire we are well equipped to cater for a range of activities and practices.
  • We have extensive links with all sectors of the theatre industry and as one of the most international drama schools in the UK, we also have a range of established international connections.
  • Our staff undertake many forms of research including practice-as-research and text-based enquiry and are experts in drawing connections between exploratory practice and advanced conceptualising, process and product, making and articulating.
THE Awards 2018 - Winner University of the Year

Our expert staff

Our staff undertake many forms of research including practice-as-research and text-based enquiry, and are experts in drawing connections between exploratory practice and advanced conceptualising, process and product, making and articulating. We have extensive links with all sectors of the theatre industry and as one of the most international drama schools in the UK, we also have a range of established international connections.

Staff research specialisms include world performance, actor-training and audience reception. Our staff are undertaking research in areas such as movement and somatics in actor training, voice, immersive and participatory performance, intermedial performance, performance art, twentieth century avant-garde practice, intercultural training and practice, Balinese theatre, Brazilian theatre, Shakespeare and theatre directing.

Specialist facilities

As a highly competitive acting conservatoire we are well equipped to cater for a range of activities and practices. Our cutting-edge facilities, resources and support for research, offered across three campuses (Southend, Loughton, Colchester) are world class. We are well placed to facilitate practice-as-research by virtue of our high-specification performance and rehearsal spaces, design studios, and infrastructure.

PhD students will be based at Southend or Loughton depending on the location of their supervisor. However, all PhD students will be able to access the available facilities at both Loughton and Southend.

In Southend, East 15 PhD candidates have access to a designated University of Essex PhD room in the Gateway Building. In both Southend and Loughton, PhD students will have access to hot desks, computers, on-campus libraries and printing facilities.

In addition to this, PhD students will have access to:

  • Performance studios to support practice-as-research.
  • Access to book rehearsal spaces in the evening and weekends, when the spaces are not in use for undergraduate classes.
  • PhD students will also be able to book spaces outside the usual undergraduate term dates, approximately 20 weeks a year.

In Loughton, facilities include over 20 rehearsal studios of various sizes and a radio and recording studio. In Southend, East 15 facilities include 16 large rehearsal studios, seminar rooms and an Apple Mac editing suite. Both campuses also have a working theatre and dance studio.

As well as the physical resources, PhD students will have the opportunity to create connections with the acting, technical, and producing students on each campus – inviting them to take part in research activities outside of their timetabled classes and rehearsals.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

You are required to have a 2:1 honours degree in any discipline, or international equivalent, and a Masters degree in Drama, Performance or a related field, or to have equivalent professional experience. A well developed research proposal is also essential.

Applicants who do not hold the above qualifications will be considered on a case by case basis .

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

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English language requirements

If English is not your first language you will need IELTS 7.0 overall with 6.5 in writing and 5.5 in all other components.

Structure

Example structure

PhD programmes do not have structured teaching. Students are supervised by a supervisory team and monitored according to key milestones.

Teaching

During the first year of their PhD programme, candidates will be expected to undertake required skills training and to develop an in-depth plan and timetable for undertaking their research within a three-year period. Students will start to collect research material, define their methodology, and be able to contextualise their research in relation to existing literature and practice.

Before entry into the second year, candidates will have a Confirmation Board, which reviews the candidate’s progress and determines whether the quality of research is at PhD level. After the student’s candidature is confirmed, they will continue to undertake the body of their research investigation.

In the third-year, students should be working to complete all elements of their submission.

Assessment

60,000-80,000 word thesis and viva voce examination.

Fees and funding

Home/EU fee

£4,630

International fee

£14,720

Fees will increase for each academic year of study.

What's next

Open Days

We don’t currently offer Open Days for this course but if you would like more information, then please email us at east15@essex.ac.uk.

Loughton Campus

Visit Loughton Campus

You’ll be in intensive training at one of the most prestigious and internationally respected conservatoires in the country gaining the skills and knowledge necessary to pursue a career in the performing arts. But fear not! It’s not all work and no play at East 15 Acting School in Loughton.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

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