Postgraduate Course

MA Advanced Professional Theatre Practice

MA Advanced Professional Theatre Practice


The details
Advanced Professional Theatre Practice
October 2023
1 year
East15 (Loughton) Campus

This course will launch in September 2022.

East 15 Acting School’s Advanced Professional Theatre Practice course is a blended learning course designed specifically for established professionals currently working or teaching in the performing arts. Our unique program allows you to continue to work on professional projects whilst integrating your professional practice and knowledge with academic and practical learning.

The degree is delivered through a combination of online study with intensive live workshops and uses your existing professional and teaching practice as a medium for development and exploration. This flexible approach means that you can live abroad or study with us alongside your personal or professional commitments whilst developing your practice as a theatre practitioner, teacher, director, designer, dancer or interdisciplinary artist with a specific interest in theatre and performance.

Applicants must either have an established professional profile (including formal or informal training) in live performance; i.e. actors and other performers, directors, designers, stage and production managers, or practitioners holding a Diploma from an accredited conservatoire or hold a BA degree and experience in a relevant field.

View more Masters courses from East 15 Acting School, including Actor training and Theatre Directing.

Why we're great.
  • Online study and peer discussion forum.
  • Intensive teaching blocks (2x two-week blocks in Terms 2 and 3).
  • One-to-one tutor support.

Our expert staff

Our training is by professionals and for professionals, allowing our graduates to work successfully across the globe.

Our international, outstanding teaching faculty is made up of professionals from all areas of live and recorded performance.

Learn more about our staff here.

Specialist facilities

The blended learning approach used for this program is unique amongst courses taught at East 15 and will consist of 2x two-week teaching blocks in Terms 2 and 3 which will take place at our picturesque Loughton Campus.

We are just a five-minute walk from London Underground station, Debden, where you can travel in only thirty minutes to Central London, West End theatres and mainline train stations including the Eurostar.

We have three sites at our Loughton Campus – Hatfields, Roding House and Unit Four. Hatfields is a beautiful Georgian dower house, set in five acres of lawns with orchards, flowerbeds and a small lake, providing an idyllic atmosphere for study, relaxation and performance.

Just a short walk from Hatfields is Roding House, a £1.3 million facility containing 10 rehearsal rooms, a green room/café, a sound recording studio and a video editing suite, and our costume department.

Next to Roding House, Unit Four is a £1.5 million facility which is home to the Stage & Production Management department. The Unit contains a large workshop, paint shop, prop shop, prop storage facilities and teaching spaces.

Our on-site Corbett Theatre is named in honour of Harry H Corbett, a key member of Joan Littlewood’s Theatre Workshop and early benefactor of East 15. It is used extensively for student productions and is a practical training hub for our BA Stage and Production Management students.

The building is a medieval tithe barn that was dismantled and transported to Hatfields in the 1960s. These unusual origins create a unique performance space with a special atmosphere. Renovated to include full technical facilities, tiered seating for 130 people and fitted dressing rooms, the theatre provides an excellent resource for public productions, while the adjacent Bar and Café provides a social meeting point for students and staff.

Your future

On completion of the MA Advanced Professional Theatre Practice program, you are recognised as a graduate of East 15 conservatoire training, equipped with the ability to build on your existing professional knowledge and further identify and develop your skills through research in a professional environment moving forward.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A 2:2 degree, or equivalent, in a relevant field such as acting, directing, dance, design, producing, performance or theatre and relevant professional experience;


An established professional profile (including formal or informal training) in live performance which may include: actors and other performers, directors, designers, stage and production managers;


Practitioners holding a Diploma in any subject from an accredited conservatoire (FDS membership) and relevant professional experience.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here. Please select your country page where you'll find this information.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.


Course structure

We offer dynamic and unique courses for actors, directors and students of theatre practice. Training at East 15 draws upon 50 years of tradition combined with a keen sense of the world of stage and screen today.

Our carefully selected modules will give you the chance to explore and develop your specialist training.

We understand that deciding where and what to study is a very important decision for you. We’ll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities as described on our website. However, if we need to make material changes, for example due to significant disruption, or in response to COVID-19, we’ll let our applicants and students know as soon as possible.

Components and modules explained


Components are the blocks of study that make up your course. A component may have a set module which you must study, or a number of modules from which you can choose.

Each component has a status and carries a certain number of credits towards your qualification.

Status What this means
You must take the set module for this component and you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component but you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
You must take the set module for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Compulsory with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.

The modules that are available for you to choose for each component will depend on several factors, including which modules you have chosen for other components, which modules you have completed in previous years of your course, and which term the module is taught in.


Modules are the individual units of study for your course. Each module has its own set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria and also carries a certain number of credits.

In most cases you will study one module per component, but in some cases you may need to study more than one module. For example, a 30-credit component may comprise of either one 30-credit module, or two 15-credit modules, depending on the options available.

Modules may be taught at different times of the year and by a different department or school to the one your course is primarily based in. You can find this information from the module code. For example, the module code HR100-4-FY means:

HR 100  4  FY

The department or school the module will be taught by.

In this example, the module would be taught by the Department of History.

The module number. 

The UK academic level of the module.

A standard undergraduate course will comprise of level 4, 5 and 6 modules - increasing as you progress through the course.

A standard postgraduate taught course will comprise of level 7 modules.

A postgraduate research degree is a level 8 qualification.

The term the module will be taught in.

  • AU: Autumn term
  • SP: Spring term
  • SU: Summer term
  • FY: Full year 
  • AP: Autumn and Spring terms
  • PS: Spring and Summer terms
  • AS: Autumn and Summer terms


Preparation for Postgraduate Study


Performance Theory and Practice


Creative Project


Teaching and Workshop Facilitation


EA724-7-SU or EA725-7-SU


Term 1

In the first term you will:

  • Reflect on your previous experience as a preparation for study and development planning
  • Identify and respond critically to a range of theories relevant to contemporary performance practice and develop an individual appreciation of how they can enhance and enrich your own practice
  • Locate your own professional work in the context of contemporary and recent practitioners in a variety of theatrical forms
Term 2

Based on ideas and processes explored in Term 1, this term will see you collaborate with your cohort to create and perform a short piece of original devised theatre or film.

Alternatively, you have the option to be assessed through a professional theatre project produced off-Campus, providing that you can submit documentary evidence.

In this term you will also consider the professional skills and knowledge you can offer as a teacher and facilitator and translate your own creative practice into engaging and effective learning sessions.

Term 3

In your third term, you will apply a range of the knowledge, skills and approaches explored during taught modules to develop and present a substantial written or practical project.

Fees and funding

Home/UK fee


International fee


What's next

Open Days

We don’t currently offer Open Days for this course but if you would like more information, then please email us at


When you apply for one of our postgraduate courses, we will assess you on your experience (both academic and practical) and your potential for success.

Applicants to our MA Advanced Professional Theatre Practice course are considered on the basis of a written application, plus an established professional profile (including formal or informal training) in live performance, for example: actors and other performers, directors, designers, stage and production managers (or a related profession).

Candidates will also be invited for interview.

All MA students must complete the East 15 Direct Application Form..

For full details, please see the East 15 website.

Hatfields, Loughton Campus

Visit Loughton Campus

You’ll be in intensive training at one of the most prestigious and internationally respected conservatoires in the country, gaining the skills and knowledge necessary to pursue a career in the performing arts. But fear not! It’s not all work and no play at East 15 Acting School in Loughton.

View from Square 2 outside the Rab Butler Building looking towards Square 3


Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.

Find out more

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications. The University would inform and engage with you if your course was to be discontinued, and would provide you with options, where appropriate, in line with our Compensation and Refund Policy.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

Ask us a question
Ask us a question

Want to quiz us about your course? Got a question that just needs answering? Get in touch with us on live chat!