Rose Bruford College MA Theatre and Young Audiences group workshop with children

What you'll study

Theatre for Young Audiences is a practical training programme for performers and makers from a range of disciplines, that explores approaches to making work for, by and with children and young people.

Underpinning the course is the ambition to define Theatre for Young Audiences as a cutting-edge arts practice, outside (or perhaps alongside) the Applied Theatre framing that so often dominates this area of training, encouraging co-creative processes that balance the sensibilities of the adult artist and the creative voice of children and young people.

Watch this video made by Artsmark to learn more about our collaboration with Riverside school to deliver a sensory project for their pupils.

Book an informal chat with Jeremy Harrison, Programme Director

Theatre for Young Audiences MA at Rose Bruford College

Why choose this course?

Expert training

Lead by a team of specialist practitioners and academics, you will work with some of the leading figures in the UK and international Theatre for Young Audiences sector.

Unique approach

You will work in theatre spaces, schools, outdoor spaces, community settings; anywhere that these vibrant audiences ask us to work.

Professional experience

You will learn to devise, perform and make theatre for, by and with children of all ages, including theatre for babies and early years (2-4 year olds), as well as working with children with complex disabilities.

Industry contacts and networking

Work with leading companies, theatres and professional partners including taking part in 'real-world' projects for Arts Council England national portfolio organisation Playground and the Primary Shakespeare Company.

Collaborative and Interdisciplinary

You will work with artists from a range of disciplines and alongside students from other courses including MA Actor Musicianship.

Theatre for Young Audiences MA at Rose Bruford College

Course breakdown

MA module breakdown

  • Module one: Approaches to Performance

The course begins with a skills-block that includes classes in devising, movement, voice, acting, musicality, approaches to working with children and young people and ensemble practice.

Following the skills block, students take part in two mini-projects: the sensory theatre project, a collaboration with local special schools and an early years project, led by leading practitioners in this field.

  • Module two: Theatre for Young Audiences in Performance

Students then create two fully realised projects, including a collaborative project with students from the MA Actor Musicianship course. Previous examples have included an open-air adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey created with young refugees, a verbatim piece for teenagers exploring gender identity, and collaborations with the Primary Shakespeare Company, including touring to secondary schools in North London and whole-school projects co-created with pupils and staff at special schools in Kent.

  • Module three: Languages of Practice

Running alongside the practical class work this module supports you to develop your own artistic voice, culminating in the creation of a scratch piece shared alongside a portfolio that documents how the piece was made. The module develops the skills of the artist as practice-researcher; modelled on the way artists think about and share their ideas to producers, funders and an academic audience.

  • Module four: Independent Project

The course finishes with an opportunity for you to make the work you want to make, supported by mentors from the college and our industry partners. You can work alone or in a collaboration with students from other courses. The pieces are shared in a mini-festival format and accompanied by a portfolio or written submission.

MFA module breakdown

Year 1

  • Module One: Approaches to Performance

The course begins with a skills-block that includes classes in devising, movement, voice, acting, musicality, approaches to working with children and young people and ensemble practice.

Following the skills block, students take part in two mini-projects: the sensory theatre project, a collaboration with local special schools and an early years project, led by leading practitioners in this field.

  • Module Two: Theatre for Young Audiences in Performance

Students then create two fully realised projects, including a collaborative project with students from the MA Actor Musicianship course. Previous examples have included an open-air adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey created with young refugees, a verbatim piece for teenagers exploring gender identity, and collaborations with the Primary Shakespeare Company, including touring to secondary schools in North London and whole-school projects co-created with pupils and staff at special schools in Kent.

  • Module Three: Languages of Practice

Running alongside the practical class work this module supports you to develop your own artistic voice, culminating in the creation of a scratch piece shared alongside a portfolio that documents how the piece was made. The module develops the skills of the artist as practice-researcher; modelled on the way artists think about and share their ideas to producers, funders and an academic audience.

Year 2

  • Module Four: The Widening Field

This module focuses on processes of research and development aimed at realising individualised specialist practice with the view that it ultimately achieves professional validity and viability. The module is deliberately open and flexible as each student’s journey will develop its own pathway.

The module is based around self-directed study, research into the industry and work-based learning through talks/presentations/ seminars throughout the year prior to the attachment. Students are supported in seeking appropriate work-based learning opportunities either with the College’s creative partners, their own contacts, new initiatives with appropriate organisations or ensemble companies or working within appropriate internal placement opportunities.

There will be four taught weekends that offer the opportunity to test and trial the state of your practice with tutor/mentor/peer feedback and input.  These weekends will be focused to support the progressive development of each student’s emerging project.

  • Module Five: Final Independent Project

The final module facilitates the creation of your original creative work. This may be a performance, a conceptual paper, a multi-dimensional proposition of a project that you have developed, and pitch to professional organisations; it may be the practical articulation of your own practice or a model and vision for your future organisation.

Teaching and assessment methods

MA: You will complete around 350 hours of indicative scheduled learning and teaching activities and 850 hours of independent learning on projects, productions, placements or self-directed study. Assessment will be through: Coursework, performances, presentations, assessed tutorials and portfolios.

MFA: In year one you will complete around 350 hours of indicative scheduled learning and teaching activities and 850 hours of independent learning on projects, productions, placements or self-directed study. Assessment will be through: Coursework, performances, presentations, assessed tutorials and portfolios.

In your second year you will complete around 350 hours of indicative scheduled learning and teaching activities and 850 hours of independent learning on projects, productions, placements or self-directed study. Assessment will be through: Coursework, performances, presentations, assessed tutorials and portfolios.

Get a flavour

Play video

Your Future Career

The MA/MFA in Theatre for Young Audiences course prepares you for a range of professional contexts including as an interdisciplinary performer, maker and facilitator of work for children of all ages. Whether in a theatre, community or educational setting our graduates are prepared to help young people find, explore and share the power of creativity, play and performance.

Alumni Success

Jo Frater

Jo Frater is Creative Director and founder of Confidance, an organisation that delivers high quality inclusive dance work in schools, community settings and arts venues in Kent.

Ellison Tan

Ellison Tan is a performer, playwright and educator and co-artistic Director of Singapore's The Finger Players, she is also co-founder of The Wanderlings, the first Singaporean collective to create baby theatre.

Stasa Dukic

Stasa is a freelance actress and theatre-maker who has worked for Speech Bubbles, Half Moon Presents and at the New Vic. Stasa is also a sessional artist for Playground, which became at Arts Council England national portfolio organisation in 2023.

Rosa Higgs

Rosa graduated in 2022 and joined Little Angel theatre as a workshop producer, as well as developing her own sensory opera project for babies.

Charlie Martin

Charlie is an Assistant Producer for BBC following her work for the BBC's Bitesize programming for children and young people.

Nishna Mehta

Nishna graduated in 2020, she is a board member of International Inclusive Arts Network and project manager for their Making Waves scheme. She is currently working with ASSITEJ Germany.

Jeremy Harrison Rose Bruford College MA Programme Director
Jeremy Harrison

Programme Director Postgraduate & Head of Theatre for Young Audiences Centre

Read their profile
Joseph Dunne-Howrie MA/MFA Module Coordinator Performative Writing/​Vade Mecum
Dr Joseph Dunne-Howrie

MFA Coordinator & MA Languages of Practice Module Year Coordinator

Read their profile

How to join

Institution code: Not required for this course.

Course code: Not required for this course.

Entry requirements

Applicants for Masters Programmes will be expected to have a good undergraduate degree in a related subject area. The College also encourages applications from those without formal qualifications who may be accepted on the basis of professional experience.

The application deadline for Postgraduate courses is 29 February 2024.

Please contact us at [email protected] for information on entry criteria if you are applying from outside the UK. You can also visit our international students page.

Application Guidance

When you submit your online application you will be asked to submit:

  • A detailed personal statement (500 word or a 2-minute video recording). This should include why you want to study Theatre for Young Audiences, what you would bring to the course and what your current interests and passions are.

With your application you will be asked to submit evidence of previous work:

  • Documentation/links to previous works (these can be a video of a performance, a script you have written, a video work, a performance text or score, an exhibition/festival you have curated, creative writing, academic writing/essay, digital work, critical writing/reviews, an audio work, written reflection on live work). The piece can be of any form or genre and should be made with a particular age-range in mind.
  • Candidates from non-performance backgrounds should provide a portfolio or example of their work.

Workshop

If successful, you will be invited to the second round which will be an in-person workshop based on our Sidcup campus.

Workshops and Interviews, the process has two stages:

Stage 1: Workshop

A three-hour workshop consisting of practical work and discussion that takes place at Rose Bruford College’s Sidcup campus.

Stage 2: Interview

The interview is an opportunity for you to meet the Programme Director and outline why you wish to study on the course and how you think it will inform your personal and professional development. It is also an opportunity for you to ask us questions about the course student life at Rose Bruford.

What shall I prepare?

  • Candidates should prepare a short monologue or poem. The text can be from any play, era or poet and should reflect your interest in young audiences.
  • For the stage 2 interview you do not need to prepare anything for the interview. This is an opportunity for us to learn more about you and for you to ask any questions you might have.

Postgraduate course discount for Rose Bruford alumni

We offer a 5% discount on fees for our postgraduate courses for alumni who’ve completed an undergraduate course at Rose Bruford. Get in touch with our Admissions team on [email protected] if you’re a graduate or current undergraduate student to find out more.

Funding and Financial Support

Course Summary

Duration

MA 13 months MFA 24 Months

Mode of study

Full time

Start date

October 2024

Course Type

Postgraduate Course

Course Fees (2024 Entry)

MA UK & Republic of Ireland Students (180 credits)

£18100

MA International Students (180 credits)

£24150

MFA UK & Republic of Ireland Students (240 credits)

£29850

MFA International Students (240 credits)

£29850

Additional Costs