Design for Performing Arts

Please note that for the next intake in September 2021, the MFA in Acting and the MFA in Directing will not be offered.

The MFA in Performance Creation and the MFA in Design will continue with the next intake – the application deadline for these two programs has been extended to February 15, 2021

MFA Theatre (Design for Performing Arts)

Our MFA in Theatre (Design for Performing Arts) offers advanced studio training in contemporary performance design with a focus on sustainable practices. The program is geared to theatre professionals but also welcomes applicants from backgrounds such as engineering, architecture, etc. who have a keen interest in innovative and sustainable environments, technologies and design for all forms of performance.

The objective of the program is to create an environment in which students can explore both contemporary methods of design and new opportunities generated by 21st-century performance-related technologies. The program draws on the concept of sustainability not only from a technological point of view, but also as a paradigm shift to how we design and envision our theatre productions.

Students will be engaged in several areas of study: design theory, ecological theory, methodology, practicum, research and design. A collaborative approach to the creative process may include work with directors, performers, designer-mentors, technical personnel and environmental professionals.

photo of MFA Designer Renee Brode meeting with BFA Actors working on "Job", one of the actors is kneeling on the floor, the other is visible through a reflection in a mirror

MFA Designer Renee Brode meets with BFA Actors working on "Job"

Curriculum components include:

  • examination on a comprehensive reading list of 100 plays
  • graduate research seminar
  • history of visual sources
  • design for the performing arts 1 and 2
  • directing and design
  • sustainable design
  • research paper (summer) - the basis of a thesis project

Additional studies chosen from other areas/programs:

  • directing
  • text study
  • environmental studies
  • other study (with permission of the Graduate Director)

Thesis project in one of the following areas:

  • theoretical design for performing arts
  • practical design for performing arts
  • sustainable technology in performing arts