Full time: Three years
W441; Short form: BA/TP
Preston (Campus code: U)
Take your interest in acting that little bit further. UCLan’s Theatre degree is a hands-on course with a strong emphasis on individuality and creativity, informed by strong links to the contemporary theatre and performance industry.
The practical classes are delivered in state-of-the-art ‘black box’ theatres housed on-site in our multi-million pound Media Factory, preparing you for the creative and physical demands of this dynamic industry. Workshop-based sessions, combined with original group performance work, will prepare you for a career to continue your acting or progress to a creative artist or director.
260 points at A2; General Studies accepted
BTEC Extended Diploma: Merit, Merit, Merit
BTEC Diploma: Distinction, Distinction
Pass Access To HE with 30 Level 3 Credits at Distinction
International Baccalaureate: 28P
IELTS grade 6 with no subscore lower than 5.5.
5 GCSEs at grade C inc Maths & English or equivalent.
104 Points at A2; General Studies accepted
BTEC Extended Diploma: Merit, Merit, Merit
BTEC Diploma: Distinction, Distinction
Pass Access to HE with 106 Points
International Baccalaureate with 28P
IELTS grade 6 with no subscore lower than 5.5
GCSE 5 at grade C including Maths and English or equivalent.
For changes to 2017 UCAS tariff entry requirements please see our important information.
Application, audition and interview.
Previous experience or qualification in the performing arts is a requirement.
Candidates do not need to prepare a speech but must bring loose comfortable clothing (preferably jogging bottoms, training shoes and a t-shirt), changing rooms are available. Guests of candidates are not permitted to attend the workshop or interview. If you have any questions about the interview/audition please contact the Admissions Tutor Chris Gilligan on (01772) 895341 or by email.
Experience UCLan for yourself: talk to lecturers, walk around campus and chat to students.
On the BA (Hons) Contemporary Theatre and Performance, you’ll be studying in Preston at the heart of this thriving Performing Arts region - in addition to its own venues, the nearby cities of Manchester, Liverpool, Salford and Lancaster have the largest concentration of international theatres outside of the capital. This dynamic three–year course is for highly creative actors and performers that are driven to explore innovative and experimental theatre making and performance.
The tutors are supportive in encouraging students to define their individual area of practice and to develop this throughout the course of the degree programme
The first year of the course is designed to fully prepare you for the realistic, creative and physical demands of the degree course and theatre performance industry. Workshop-based sessions introduce you to a wide range of acting, performance and devising skills, complemented by lectures, seminars, screenings and theatre visits. Throughout the year, you will be creating original group performance work in small groups, as well as with level two students in their productions. You will also perform in two public and tutor directed ensemble shows.
Watch a recent video from the Degree Show 2016 that shows the exemplary work on the course.
In your second year, you will step firmly into the creative frame while developing and consolidating individual performance practice. Alongside continued classes in 'Devising strategies,' practical modules in 'Text and Performance,' 'Visual Theatre' and 'Body and Performance' are designed to encourage you to experiment within and across the mediums. Under your tutor’s guidance, you will also devise, perform and direct small group public productions, as well as performing in the final productions of level three students.
At level three, you will identify yourself both artistically and professionally; defining the theatre you make and perform while finding professional contexts for meaningful progression. Study at this level is largely student-directed, consisting of tutorials, presentations, acting and performance workshops and showings of devised work-in-progress; culminating in a major public performance of your final production. The honours route also consists of extended research either in the form of a written dissertation or a documented practice-based research project.
The freedom to create, the process of collaboration and research into contemporary performers allowed me to recognise skills within myself
After graduating in 2015, I worked as a Producer and Communications Assistant for Fierce Festival Birmingham. This amazing opportunity helped me secure both mentors, friends and a life-long network within the International Live Art community. This network led me to working with Ibsen Award winning performance makers Forced Entertainment as a Marketing and Digital Communications Assistant. I am a recipient of a Weston Jerwood Independent Creative Producer bursary with 'Ferment', an artist development programme, part of Bristol Old Vic Theatre and work as a freelance producer for performance artist and Contemporary Other Magazine editor Demi Nandhra. I have also assisted on projects for artists Geraldine Pilgrim and They Are Here, London.
I have recently been selected for a programme of International Creative Development in Italy and continue to focus on developing my own artistic practice. I will be performing my first post-graduate work as part of 'For you, For you, For You' festival in Leipzig Germany 2017.
Graduate, Charlotte Berry, is currently working with Fuel Theatre as Local Engagement Specialist for New Theatre In Your Neighbourhood and also started her own theatre company: Tin Can People.
Charlotte says: “The course has set me on the right path for a career in the arts. The different modules gave me an insight into different career opportunities and I was able to realise where my interests are. I had the opportunity to see so much great work outside of the university - travelling to London, Edinburgh, Birmingham & Manchester. The many opportunities which the course provided led me to working with theatre companies & touring my own work – it’s really important to gain experience while doing your degree!”
After touring with a rock band in her late twenties, Lindsay Bennett embarked on the theatre degree at UCLan, where she gained a first class honors. 2014 saw Lindsay write her first solo show 'Mercury Complex' and was subsequently approached and commissioned by Manchester based production company Word of Warning to write and perform a second show 'Exit Smiling' which premiered at Contact Theatre in May 2014. Lindsay graduated from the course in 2014 and has gone on to work in TV & Film:
“I've been really busy of late - I have a Manchester based agent and have most recently finished a paranormal thriller feature film called 'Seizure' set for 2016 release alongside some other projects which include work with Directors Tom Shrapnel and Frederic Planchon. I’ve acted in the sci-fi short film 'Charlie and me', a political film ‘Killerbird’ and another short film called 'Goldfish', which is currently in the American festival circuit. I have just written my own short film which should be starting production next month.”
3rd Year student has been getting his work out professionally whilst studying & this has really developed his skills as a writer, performer and theatre maker:
“Whilst studying as a student on the course, I have applied to professional platforms to showcase my performance work. My solo performance I’ll have a pint was commissioned for Drunken Chorus’ DRUNKEN NIGHTS III with mentorship from artist Andy Smith. Tin Can People, a theatre company consisting of myself and graduate Charlotte Berry, showcases our solo projects as well as a group piece called ‘Remember Me’, which was made as part of a university module in collaboration with another student Chloe Stollery. ‘Remember Me’ has recently appeared at Emergency 2015 in Manchester and at Hatch: Blood, Sweat and Tears in Leicester.”
“There was strong feeling of community within the program, I always felt I was able to talk to lecturers about any worries I had. Students were always offered one-to-one support when it was needed. Studying on this programme gave me fundamental performance and devising skills which I now utilize whilst I complete an MA in Performance Making at Goldsmiths University London. I am truly grateful to the programme as it has helped me develop a career within the arts. The programme allowed me to develop an individual theatre practice and helped me expand my ideas conceptually. This course is dynamic, innovative and the lecturers are authentic in their teaching of the arts. If you want to be a theatre maker with lots of tools on your belt, this is the course for you! ”
For a concise summary of the main features of this course, see our course specification.
For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.
For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:
Full-time: £9,250 per year (UK/EU)
Tuition Fees are per year unless otherwise stated and may be subject to increase annually in line with UK Retail Price Index inflation rate
For 2016/17 fees please refer to our fees page.
All practical classes are delivered in state of the art 'black-box' theatres that are housed in a million-pound development. Lectures occur in high specification suites that also fully support student presentation and seminar activities.
Assessment of performances, seminars and written work takes place periodically throughout the year. Individual development of performing skills is assessed continuously. There are no written examinations.
The course has given me a range of practical skills which have enabled me to work confidently and successfully within contemporary practice. The underpinning of these practical skills with a solid base of theoretical knowledge has, for me, been the most rewarding aspect of the degree
Successful graduates of this course have progressed to a range of work with small and medium-scale companies in the UK and internationally. The course has an excellent industrial progression record with a high number of graduates finding work as either actors or performers with touring companies or entering the industry as creative artists or directors in their own right. Other students have successfully gone on to work in community arts practice and teaching.
You will have 24/7 access to The Media Factory housing state-of-the-art industry standard facilities. Workshops also take place in St Peter’s Arts Centre, a beautiful converted former Church at the centre of the Preston campus.
The Media Factory also houses music, video and photography studios that can be utilised by Theatre students.
In the 2015 National Student Survey (NSS) Drama courses at UCLan have been ranked 15th out of 89 providers and received 100% ratings from students who completed the survey in the following categories: