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This Master's degree in London Theatre explores London; the world’s stage. Learn from a range of relevant industry professionals and dedicated research-active academics. 



  • Study theatre in London – see the most innovative and exciting theatre in the world in theatres across the city.
  • Masterclasses and seminars with those working in the theatre industry, making contacts while on the course.
  • Research at nationally important centres for theatre research.

Why study London Theatre?

The London Theatre postgraduate programme is designed for students who have a thirst to understand the unique contribution that London theatre makes to the development of theatre practices in the UK and why London is recognised as an international centre for theatre development.

This degree gives you opportunities to explore the diverse and ever-changing nature of the theatre scene and critically comment on it through academic study and professional theatre criticism. 

The UK theatre scene is a world leader in the creation of new plays, showcasing the most exciting voices in drama.

On the MA London Theatre degree, you will learn how to develop your skills as a theatre critic, writing and reviewing shows on the contemporary London stage. You will practice writing for different kinds of readers, both conventional printed and online publications. You will gain experience of what’s going on in the London Theatre environment by: 

  • seeing and writing about London plays, actors, writers, directors, theatres and theatre companies
  • attending live theatre in London and finding out what is being programmed in London’s West End and Fringe venues
  • visiting lectures from industry professionals in a range of roles
  • experience of theatre research and critical writing
  • the Dissertation module (across two semesters) where you can create your own portfolio of work to showcase your writing skills 
  • insight into different kinds of writing for theatre and ideas to get started in your writing career.

Why St Mary's?

You will complete the course with an invaluable grounding in writing for theatre on paper and online, and gain a headstart in navigating your own writing career.

In our current academic year, guest lecturers have worked at venues like the National Theatre, The Old Vic, The Bush, The Arcola, The Vaults Festival, The London International Festival of Theatre and The Lyric Hammersmith. These include:

  • Guy Jones (Director/Dramaturg, Orange Tree Theatre)
  • Steve Harper (Literary Manager, Theatre 503)
  • Jon Britain (Writer, Rotterdam)
  • Jesse Dupre (Co-Artistic Director: Haste Theatre Company)
  • Cameron Abbott-Betts (Artistic Director: Royal Kung Foolery)
  • Mitch Mitchelson (Actor, specialist in Commedia Del’Arte)
  • Ken Emson (Writer, Plastic, Rust)

Students participated in behind-the-scenes visits to venues like the Orange Tree, Hampstead Theatre, and Theatre 503. They gained valuable work experience with literary departments and also conducted research at the National Theatre Archive and the archive of Shakespeare’s Globe.

Drama St Mary’s is a warm and welcoming University with a vibrant undergraduate and postgraduate training in theatre. Our postgraduate courses offer the opportunity to develop your writing skills by giving you the best academic and practical training, supported by university academics and visitors from the theatre industry. Come and join our group of students and develop your skills by working with our strong core team of academics alongside skilled visiting practitioners.

Studying in London means that you can take full advantage of the new developments in theatre happening in theatres across the city every season. Musicals, devised shows, comedy, ‘Fringe’ productions, revivals, puppetry, circus skills, innovations in sound, lighting and costume – you will find all this in theatre in London. You can be part of writing about new discoveries in London Theatre and expanding your own knowledge and understanding of all that is offered on the London stage. Our established links with London theatre venues and organisations means you will see and hear about new developments as they happen.

Drama St Mary's also offers a Master's degree in Playwriting.

Entry requirements

2:2 Previous degree

A first degree at second-class level or above (or equivalent) is required.

Additional requirement information

Students without such qualifications may, in some circumstances, be considered for entry if they are deemed to have substantial equivalent qualifications or experience.

Candidates will also be interviewed for a place on this degree.

International requirements

International students should check our country-specific pages for equivalents. If English is not your first language you will need to achieve an IELTS score of 6.5 overall with no less than 6.0 in any section (or equivalent).

We now accept IELTS Indicator test results as proof of your English language level.

Further information

For more information about entry requirements please email apply@stmarys.ac.uk.

Course content

Modules

  • Making Theatre Core
  • London Fringe Theatre Core
  • London Physical Theatre and Live Art Core
  • Researching and Working in Theatre Core
  • Reporting Theatre Core
  • West End Theatre Core
  • Dissertation Project Core

Please note: it is possible that a module listed on the website will not be able to run due to reasons beyond our control. For more information please refer to our course information disclaimer.

Career opportunities

Drama St Mary’s graduates have gone on to work in a range of related arts industries. Our courses prepare students to find consistent, professional work in their chosen field. 

The module London Fringe introduces you to the area of London theatre where you are most likely to find work in your initial career as a theatre writer, critic or researcher

How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

You'll be taught on our beautiful and historic campus located in Twickenham, London.

You will be taught in small groups and have some individual tutorials for advice about your writing style. Some core modules are shared with the Playwriting MA students, so that you can meet the playwrights of tomorrow, while also sharing links and connections.

You can have up to 10 free theatre tickets on this course and will have the chance to write about work you have seen in London as part of your course assessment. 

Your final dissertation project allows you to develop a portfolio of traditional academic essays, write articles about London Theatre or develop a collection of theatre reviews to showcase your writing style.

Assessment methods

You are assessed through your written work, creating theatre reviews, journalism and analysis. You will build a graduate portfolio of work which can also be posted online and on your own webpage which you can develop as part of the course.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

January 2021

  • Home: £7,580
  • International: £13,650

September 2021

  • Home: £8,100
  • International: £13,950

Part-time fees

Part-time students will be charged for the modules undertaken per academic year. Module prices are calculated as a percentage of credits against the total credits and cost of the degree.

Tuition fees are subject to an inflationary increase each year, meaning if your course runs over more than one academic year you may pay an increased fee per module for each subsequent year of study. Tuition fee increases for returning students will be capped at the higher of 5% per annum or the rate of Consumer Price Index inflation in the United Kingdom.

Funding

The tuition fees listed on this page are for the 2018/19 academic year. For information on fees for other academic years - along with information about financing your studies - please check the Fees & Funding section.

International Students should check their eligibility for our International Scholarship.

Government-funded loans of over £11,000 are available to many UK/EU postgraduate students.

For guidance about financing your studies, including information about the government-funded loans, please check out Fees & Funding section.

International Students should check their eligibility for our International Scholarship.

Alumni discount

A 20% tuition fee discount is available for our alumni (undergraduate and PGCE) planning to study this Master's degree. Those studying for a PGDip of PGCert are not eligible for the discount.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken For further information about additional costs please contact michelle.paull@stmarys.ac.uk.

Facilities

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Further information