This course is for designers, artists and makers who wish to explore performance making through the lens of design. It is an interdisciplinary course and is routed in the concept of the thinking practitioner and is multi-disciplinary in nature.
Design is at the core of the course, the concepts of design are then applied through the module teaching and learning strategies to a variety of contexts, primarily: lighting, set, costume, digital content, virtual technologies and visual design for public spaces. The course delivery will ensure a broad foundation across all areas in its early stages, whilst providing the opportunity for an increased focus for students on one or more of the areas as they progress. This approach will ensure graduates are fully rounded practitioners, able to contribute effectively to the world of work on graduation.
The course offers a flexible approach to crafting your own creative pathway and students are encouraged to shape their specialisms, with the ability to graduate as multidisciplinary practitioners. This course provides the understanding and skills you need to pursue a career in theatre, performance, dance, live art, digital performance, immersive experience, event design, art direction, games design, film and moving image.
The teaching team and our students come from a wide range of personal and professional backgrounds. As a course we are committed to diversity and celebrate difference. We encourage creative risk-taking by providing a safe, supportive and acceptive environment in which unique individuals and collaborative processes can flourish and thrive.
Why choose this course?
Collaborating across theatre, film, immersive and virtual environments and live art, you will work in contexts where practices overlap in unpredictable ways opening the possibilities for you to create ground-breaking work.
Projects and placements with external organisations, as well as in-house productions will allow you to create work in professional environments.
The experience you will gain will lead you to work in all areas of performance-associated industries including theatre, film, immersive experience, gaming, performance events and live art.
World class facilities
Professionally equipped design studios, lighting labs, Virtual Production stage, specialist motion capture, virtual reality, green screen technologies.
Choose your pathway
Focus on your chosen area/areas in second and third year: set, costume, lighting, digital content, virtual technologies or visual design for public spaces.
During your first year you will collaborate and work across contexts, which will prepare you to move on to a more focused negotiated pathway in Year 2 and Year 3.
During Year 1 concepts and skills will be introduced to all students in order to build the foundations required by the sector and help them identify their preferred focus. You will have regular tutorials to support your development and help inform your choices.
The programme is designed to be broad-based and flexible, so that as a student and as a graduate you will be able to apply your abilities to a diverse range of situations and requirements.
During your second year you will be able to increase your focus on your chosen pathway: set, costume, lighting, digital content, virtual technologies or visual design for public spaces.
You will continue developing the values and design principles introduced in Year 1 and allow you to develop your skills and practice in a more focused specialist direction.
In your second year you will undertake industry placements and take on roles within realised productions at Rose Bruford College. Towards the end of Year 2, you develop a proposal for your independent research project (IRP) which is to be completed during Year 3.
In your third year you further develop your own specialist practice and complete an independent research project.
You will complete a range of creative projects that include at least one individual project and one collaborative project. You will continue working on live projects and will be able to undertake further industry placements.
At this level you will consolidate the personal and professional development journey started at during Year 1 into a fully developed business and career plan.
Your future career
We aim to put you in front of and amongst the profession. This includes the opportunity to network and undertake a placement, as well as introducing your work to the industry at our graduate exhibition in London.
Andy Sinclair Harris
Concept Designer at Walt Disney Imagineering, Hong Kong
Charlie Morgan Jones
Wagner Ring Cycle, Avenue Q, Derren Brown: Underground, London Fashion Week, Eden Project - Rainforest at Christmas
Jessica Hung Han Yun
Lighting Designer, includes work at Royal Court, Lyric Hammersmith, Sheffield Crucible, Manchester Royal Exchange, Donmar Warehouse, Edinburgh Festival
Motion Capture Technical Artist at Target 3D
Costume Designer and Maker: Lara Jensen Studio, Madame Tussauds, receipient of BAFTA scholaship.
Senior Lighting Designer, Arup
Set and Costume Designer: Museum of the Home, Little Angle Theatre, Polka Theatre
Graduating from this course you will have a career as:
- Performance designer
- Art director
- Immersive experience designer
- Video designer
- Lighting designer
- Game designer
Meet the staff
Subject Leader in Visual Production
Subject Leader in Visual Production.Read their full profile
Subject Leader Lighting Design
Subject Leader, Lighting Design.Read their full profile
Programme Director Design for Performance
Lecturer, Performance Design.Read their full profile
How to join
Institution code: R51
Course code: W461
64 UCAS points*
This is equivalent to two Cs at ‘A’ level or one Merit and two Passes at BTEC (QCF) National Diploma or equivalent.*We offer places based upon your future potential. We may offer you a place based on lower UCAS points than shown here, or an offer that is not linked to UCAS points if we have evidence of your potential from your application, portfolio and interview.
Our Portfolio page gives an overview of what we will ask you to provide once we receive your application.Portfolio
Mode of study
Full or part time
Course Fees (2023 Entry)
Course fees for 2024 entry have not been published yet
UK/Republic of Ireland students (Fee per year)
International students (Fee per year)
Fee Exemption Criteria
- You audition as part of a progression agreement.
- Your household income is under £25,000 per year.
- You are in receipt of benefits including disability benefits: Universal Credit, PIP, DLA.
- You are Care Experienced (Care Leaver/in the care of your Local Authority).
- You have Caring Responsibilities (Young Carer/ Carer).
- You are irreconcilably Estranged with no contact with parents/family due to a relationship breakdown living independently without financial/emotional support from parents/family.
- You can offer other evidence of financial hardship.
- You are being auditioned overseas.
If you think you are eligible for the above fee waivers, our admissions team will be able to provide you with more details when you apply.
There will be an equipment list for this course. You may also incur additional costs as part of the course. As an indication, this could include the following:
Theatre tickets: £100-£150 at the beginning of each year
Course materials (books, play texts, art and model making materials): about £50 per term
Stationery: £60 per year