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Theatre Directing MA, PGDip, PGCert

Key information

Qualification type

MA - Master of Arts

Subject areas

Theatre Direction

Course type


Course Summary

The Master's course in Theatre Directing - run in collaboration with the multi-award winning Orange Tree Theatre - is designed to explore the art and techniques of theatre directing within the context of contemporary theatre making. The programme is predominantly housed at The Orange Tree in Richmond, enabling students to embed their practice in the working life of this award-winning theatre. Modules are taught by both academics and theatre directors with the assistance of professional actors in the practical classes. The programme is both academic and vocational. It aims to provide an advanced understanding of theatre production processes within a context of both contemporary theatre making and the dramatic tradition. It further aims to develop students’ craft skills and technical abilities in order to prepare them for a career in theatre directing. The programme is aimed both at graduates who wish to advance their understanding of theatre practice in order to develop their work to a professional standard and at theatre professionals who wish to formalise their experience with a course of study and a qualification. Assessment takes various forms. The two lecture seminar courses are assessed by 4,000 word essay, two of the modules have practical exercises and Directing Actors is assessed by a rehearsal exercise using professional actors in a scene of your choice. Previous graduates have found assistant and associate directing work with all of the major companies, including the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre, Out of Joint and the Royal Court. The module 'The Business of Directing' deals directly with how a young emerging Director would mount their own production or find opportunities beyond the course. Students can exit with PGCert and PGDip.

Different course options

Study mode

Full time


1 year

Start date



This module consist of tutorials and rehearsal feedback. At the end of the course each student has to produce and direct a production of approximately 1 hours length at The Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond using professional actors. The production is tutored by academic staff throughout the rehearsal process and supported by technical staff.

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK / EU students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


International fees
Course fees for non-UK / EU students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


Entry requirements

Students would normally have a first degree (2:2) in Drama and some experience (student/fringe) of directing for the theatre. Occasionally, applicants may have a degree in another subject or no degree. In such cases a higher level of practical experience is expected, for example, considerable professional acting experience.

University information

St Mary’s University is located in the leafy London borough of Richmond-upon-Thames, just 30 minutes by train to central London and minutes from the banks of the river. Founded in 1850 on Catholic values, it has a well-established history in teaching theology, education and sport. St Mary’s offers a wide range of full time and part-time postgraduate courses that are internationally recognised. Ofsted rating the Primary and Secondary Teacher...more

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