UCC Postgraduate courses

Theatre and Performative Practices

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Theatre and Performative Practices

  • Code


  • College

    Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

  • Duration

    1 year full-time; 2 years part-time;

  • Teaching Mode

    Full-time, Part-Time. See Additional Teaching Mode Information for more info.

  • Qualifications


  • EU Fees

    €6,630; €3,380 (Year 1 Part-time); €3,380 (Year 2 Part-time)
    See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Non-EU Fees


  • Entry Requirements

    Applications will be considered from graduates of Theatre, Drama and / or theatre-related disciplines. Applicants will normally have a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or above, and should be able to demonstrate an established commitment to theatre and / or performative practices. See Requirements for full details.

  • Closing Date

    Open for EU applications, check rounds closing dates under How to Apply.

  • Non-EU Closing Date

    15 June

  • Start Date

    12 September 2022

Course Outline

The MA in Theatre & Performative Practices is designed to produce flexible, empowered theatre artists who want to rock the boat with innovative, cutting edge work. It provides a challenging and supported space for recent graduates and professional practitioners who know performance can be world-changing as it can be entertaining. Students will learn to follow their instincts and explore their unique creativity, within a rigorous critical context and research environment. 

With a focus on experimentation, collaboration and composition, this MA offers a unique opportunity for students to develop their own voice in a dynamic, practice and research-based, interdisciplinary learning environment. It is launching at a key time in the history of theatre and performance practice Ireland and world-wide, with the Me Too movement, Waking the Feminists, and ongoing discussion and controversy regarding the culture and nature of performance, film and theatre work. 

This MA makes space for performance as an essential tool for social and political change. Graduates will emerge ready to invigorate the cultural life of Ireland, Europe and beyond.

All students take 35 Core credits, 10 Elective credits, and a Final Project of 45 credits. 

PART 1 (45 credits) 

Core Modules (35 credits) These core credits form the central shared programme of critically rigorous and creatively adventurous theatre and performative practice:

  • DR6001 Collaborative Theatre & Performative Practices (15 Credits Semester 1): This module focuses specifically on collaboration as a founding practice of contemporary theatre and the processes of performativity. The module includes a major internship with theatre or performance company.

  • DR6002 Composition Theatre & Performative Practices (15 credits Semester 2): This module focuses specifically on composition as a founding process of making work within contemporary theatre and performative practices. The module includes working with a major company or artists on a performance or spectacle event.

  • DR6003 The Business of Theatre & Performative Events (5 credits Semester 1) Students are introduced to the business of show business, by exploring the professional elements within the working life of a theatre artist/producer/administrator.

Electives (10 credits) Semesters 1 & 2  (Not all modules will be available every year). To include:

Department of Theatre Modules:  

  • DR6024 Directed Study in Theatre and Performance (5 credits)
  • DR6025 Special Studies in Applied Theatre (10 credits)
  • DR6026 Advanced Theatre Practice (10 credits)
  • DR6027 Playwrights & Writing in Contemporary Theatre (10 credits)

Modules from other Departments in CACSSS: 

  • DH6004 Conceptual Introduction to Digital Arts & Humanities (5 credits)
  • FX6004 Film, Feminism and Psychoanalysis (10 credits)
  • HA6006 Theory for Art History (10 credits)
  • HA6007 Modern Art and Modernity (10 credits)
  • HA6009 Contemporary Art (10 credits)
  • MU6035 The Body in Creative Arts Practice (10 credits)
  • MU6037 Music and Cinema (10 credits)
  • MU6031 Sound Studies and Musicology (5 credits)
  • MU6034 Multidisciplinary Debates in Musicology and Ethnomusicology (5 credits)
  • MU6036 Music and Popular Culture (10 credits)
  • MU6038 Noise (5 credits)
  • MU6041 Agora (5 credits)
  • SS6021 Principles and Practice of Community Arts (10 credits)
  • SS6029 Development Education and Community Arts (5 credits)
  • SS6024 Arts and Social Action (5 credits)
  • WS6002 Feminist Theory (10 credits)

Part II (45 credits)  Final Project Module 45 credits Semester 3

Students choose one of the following options:

  • DR6004 Practice Research Project 1: Theatre & Performative Production
  • DR6005 Practice Research Project 2: Theatre & Performative Process
  • DR6006 Research Dissertation in Theatre & Performative Practices

Additional Teaching Mode Information

The part-time option can be taken over two years with course work completed in Year 1 (45 Credits) and thesis completed in Year 2 (45 Credits)


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

University Calendar

You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.

Course Practicalities

The MA in Theatre & Performative Practices is taught through a lively combination of studio-based training, critical seminars, internships, workshops with visiting theatre artists, critics and theorists, as well as engagement with the department’s research and practice seminar - Perforum, and through a plural and multi-level engagement with festivals, events, installations and performances throughout the year. Bring your leotard and your Lyotard, and a bottle of water.  


Students on the MA in Theatre & Performative Practices are assessed through a combination of continual assessment of contribution and achievement in process as well as final performance, through critical reflections on process / performance, as well as critical writing about theory, history and context of theatre and performative practices. Their choice of final project dictates how they will be assessed, and are weighted variously between creative practice and critical writing.  

Who Teaches on the course

Course Director
Yvon Bonenfant

Dr. Bernadette Cronin
Professor Jools Gilson
Dr. Marie Kelly
Dr. Roisin O’Gorman

Why Choose This Course

The MA in Theatre & Performative Practices at UCC offers students a unique opportunity to develop their individual and collaborative creative and critical theatre practices, through and in combination with a lively programme of internships and residencies.  

Please also see further information about the Department of Theatre, UCC here

Skills and Careers Information

What can I do after I graduate with an MA in Theatre & Performative Practices?
After you graduate you will be qualified and work-ready for multiple aspects of the creative industries, both those specifically related to theatre and performance, as well as broader aspects of cultural production, administration and the creative industries. This MA trains students in skills of making and producing theatre and performative events, in lively collaboration and always in context. These are skills which are critically and dynamically transferable to the professional worlds of theatre, dance and cultural industries. 

Occupations associated with the MA in Theatre & Performative Practices
Our previous students work in multiple aspects of contemporary theatre, dance and the cultural industries. These include Creative Cultural Producers (Theatre Production, Dance Production, Festival Production), Arts Managers, Arts Administrators, Theatre Directors, Choreographers, Performers, Playwrights, Writers for TV & Film, Community Artists working in Theatre, Dance and Visual Art as well as related industries of Journalism, Library Management, Teaching and Academia.

What are our graduates doing? 
Stefanie Preissner is a screenwriter, playwright and actor. Her six-part comedy-drama series, Can’t Cope/Won’t Cope (RTE, Northern Ireland Screen, Deadpan Pictures) was broadcast in 2016: “A series so well written it was hard to watch” Irish Times Oct 17, 2016. Stefanie graduated with a BA in Drama & Theatre Studies & Spanish in 2008.

Julie Kelleher is Artistic Director of the Everyman Theatre in Cork. One of the youngest venue producers in the country, she has been responsible for dynamically raising the profile of the Everyman. Julie was among the first cohort of students to study Drama & Theatre Studies at UCC, graduating with a BA in 2004, and an MA in 2007. 


Applications will be considered from graduates of Theatre, Drama and / or theatre-related disciplines. Applicants will normally have a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or above, and should be able to demonstrate an established commitment to theatre and / or performative practices. Applicants with significant professional-level drama and theatre experience will also be considered. Completion of the Higher Diploma in Theatre & Performative Practices (Second Class Honours Grade II or above), also qualifies students to apply.  Applicants will be asked to attend a workshop and/or interview with staff from Department of Theatre. Screen arrangements may be made in the case of applications from international students.

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Fees and Costs

The EU fee for this course is €6,630; €3,380 (Year 1 Part-time); €3,380 (Year 2 Part-time) .

The Non-EU fee for this course is €16,400.


If your course required a deposit, that figure will be deducted from your second semester fee payment in January.

EU student fee payment:

Fees for EU students are payable in two equal instalments. First payment at registration in August and the second in January.

International student fee payment:

International Students can pay in two equal instalments once they have paid the appropriate deposit. The initial payment is due on registration and the balance usually by the end of January.

How can I pay?

By Credit/Debit card online or by credit transfer.


If you have any questions on fee payment please email our Fees Office at fees@ucc.ie .

How Do I Apply

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to two courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online

Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the online application portal. Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a non-refundable €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.

Applicants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health Nursing must apply on the PAC website when the programme opens for applications.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to the online application portal in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • Any supplementary items requested for your course.

Please log into the online application portal for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

Our online application portal opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details. 

5. Rounds

For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates here.

Questions on how to apply?

Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Questions (All Applicants)

Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:

  • You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.

  • In addition to your previously declared qualifications, please outline any additional academic courses, self-learning and professional training relevant to this programme.

  • Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.

  • Please detail your computing/technical/IT skills.
  • Please describe your portfolio of relevant work or achievements.
  • Please upload your CV. 

  • After the online application is submitted, applicants will be required to add the name and email address of 2 referees and send Reference requests via the Application Portal.

The closing date for non-EU applications is 15 June

Apply Now

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact