Physical Acting (MA)

the United Kingdom

For more information about Physical Acting at University of Kent, please visit the webpage using the button above.

The award
MA

How long you will study
12 Months

Domestic course fees
find out

How you will study
full-time

Course starts
find out

International course fees
find out

All study options

About Physical Acting at University of Kent

Location: Canterbury


This taught Master's explores physical training for actors and performance practice. Based on an intensive, sustained and sophisticated engagement with this specialist aspect of theatre practice, the programme gives you the opportunity to work as individual practitioners and as an ensemble.

The programme explores:

  • physical and vocal training processes for actors
  • acting processes for performers
  • autonomous and collaborative practice
  • interdisciplinary approaches

It also equips you with the ability to document research practices in an appropriate form that is viewed as an integral part of the process and outcomes of this MA.


You have the opportunity to work with internationally respected physical theatre and training specialists, including Professor Paul Allain and Kent colleagues, as well as participate in a professional workshop on actor training by a visiting practitioner working within the tradition of European experimental theatre. You can participate fully in the activities of the Department’s very active research centre, the ‘European Theatre Research Network’.

Knowledge and understanding

You will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • the history, forms, practices, traditions and current configurations of drama, theatre and performance
  • advanced critical, artistic and conceptual paradigms in order to comprehend, interpret and intelligently engage with the work of significant practitioners and theorists in the field
  • variant aesthetic, aesthetic, political, social, and intellectual contexts of drama, theatre and performance
  • the wider interdependence of creative practice, critical theory, production processes and cultural policies
  • the inherent interdisciplinary and trans-national location and context of theatre art and performance practice, and its relation to the public and audiences
  • innovative, challenging and informed methods and practices of making performance, the processes of rehearsal, writing, scoring, devising, sceneography, choreography, staging, promotion and training techniques.

Intellectual Skills

You develop intellectual skills in:

  • the ability to critically reflect, drawing on a range of sophisticated perspectives, about practices, theories, contexts and ideas that shape theatre today
  • an awareness of intercultural and international differences
  • the ability to engage creatively and imaginatively with textual, visual, and performed sources and artworks
  • the ability to appreciate and critically evaluate your own work and the work of others, demonstrating to listening, dialogue, and discussion
  • the ability to understand the interplay between theory and practice, and their mutual enrichment
  • the ability to devise, undertake and contextualise original research in a self-directed way
  • the ability to communicate ideas and information in an accessible and scholarly manner.

Subject-specific skills

You gain subject-specific skills in: (These will include practise and professional skills)

  • the ability to describe, analyse and critically interpret theatre texts, production techniques and performance events
  • the ability to trace, assess, and synthesise information and data from a range of appropriate sources in the field, both primary and secondary, printed, electronic, and other
  • the ability to undertake research at an advanced level
  • the ability to engage with bibliographical and documentation techniques, performance and textual analysis, as well as other research methodologies
  • the ability to use archives, texts, electronic technology and other knowledge resources in theatre studies and the wider disciplines of the humanities
  • the ability to support creative work with rigorous research, appropriate documentation, and efficient conceptual consideration
  • the ability to engage confidently and competently in advanced academic research at the forefront of the discipline
  • the ability to undertake a comparative study of practices and concepts from a diverse range of socio-cultural frameworks.

Transferable skills

You will gain the following transferable skills:

  • the ability to exercise independent thinking and to demonstrate skills of problem-solving and project planning
  • confidence in interacting, negotiating and collaborating with others
  • the ability to source, organise, articulate and disseminate advanced ideas appropriately and effectively, in a way that advances knowledge and adds value
  • the ability to engage in continuous self-reflection, in order to be able to expand one’s skills- and knowledge base
  • proficiency in presenting complex thoughts, arguments, and data in coherent and lucid ways, both verbally and in writing, pitched appropriately to a range of audiences
  • initiative in identify, create, address and successfully execute complex tasks and problems to a professional level.

This programme aims to:

  • provide an internationally focussed taught Master’s programme that offers a sustained and intensive engagement with the forms, practices, traditions and histories of theatre, as well as current theoretical debates in the field
  • attract intellectually able and talented students from the UK and overseas to develop their analytical, critical, conceptual and methodological skills, and to prepare them for further postgraduate research beyond Master’s level, through their integration into the European Theatre Research Network (ETRN) or into the Centre for Cognition, Kinaesthetics and Performance (CKP), hosted by the University of Kent, the UK’s European University
  • enhance your conceptual understanding, creative skills and practical competences with a specific emphasis on the sensitivity for differing cultural contexts and practices, thereby equipping you with relevant competences and the confidence to engage with modes and patterns different to the established patterns and prepare you for future employment in the theatre sector and beyond
  • provide an excellent quality of higher education
  • provide flexibility and a multidiscipline approach
  • provide teaching informed by research and scholarship
  • meet the lifelong needs of a diversity of students
  • support national and regional economic success
  • build on close ties within Europe and elsewhere, reflecting Kent’s position as the UK’s European University
  • produce graduates of value to the region and nationally, in possession of key knowledge and skills, with the capacity to learn
  • prepare you for employment or further study
  • provide learning opportunities that are enjoyable experiences, involve realistic workloads, based within a research-led framework and offer appropriate support for students from a diverse range of backgrounds
  • provide high-quality teaching in supportive environments with appropriately qualified and trained staff.

Study options for this course

  • The award How you will study How long you will study Course starts Domestic course fees International course fees
  • The awardMAHow you will studyFull-timeHow long you will study12 months
    Course starts find outDomestic course fees find outInternational course fees find out

Notes about fees for this course

Full Time UK/EU: TBC EUR | Full Time Overseas: TBC EUR

Entry requirements

Contact University of Kent to find course entry requirements.

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