Perfect your performance skills alongside theoretical learning
Our practical and performance-based BA (Hons) Acting course helps turn natural talent into a career and make dreams of performing on stage or screen a reality.
Explore a range of key performance topics, including:
- Stage acting
- Screen acting
- Scene study
- Vocal skills and singing
- Movement and physicality
- Stage combat
- Creative writing
- Technical production and stage management
- Solo performance
- Classical theatre
Go beyond acting training
You will train to be a versatile, proactive, and flexible performer, as well as study a range of theoretical and critical topics around key acting styles, contexts, and cultures throughout history.
Academically, you will discover critical and cultural studies and investigate topics including modernism, romanticism, and post-modernism.
Produce your own work
You will work to produce and perform in original work and develop high-quality professional contacts that prepare you for a demanding, diverse, and flexible career in the professional theatre industry.
Demonstrate your talents to agents and casting directors
Our annual Acting Showcase events allow our final year students to display their abilities to industry professionals and help them find agents.
Previous cohorts have been highly successful in finding representation, many of which found theirs through participation in the end of year showcase.
Creative and collaborative community
You will become a member of a shared creative community where cultural identity, experimentation and research are central to making live and recorded theatre. You will be able to take part in casting opportunities, auditions, and talks with industry professionals.
This course runs in parallel to BA (Hons) Acting for Contemporary Theatre, so you will work with and perform with other students throughout your degree.
Past students have worked with:
- Chichester Festival Theatre
- Edinburgh Fringe Festival
- The Marlborough, Brighton
On this course you will:
- Develop your acting skills and academic understanding of theatre cultures and contexts.
- Perform and produce original work throughout your studies.
- Access placement opportunities including roles at The Chichester Festival Theatre, Forest Fringe, Edinburgh Festival and more.
- Have the opportunity to study motion capture, voice work, and showcasing.
- Learn from and network with industry professionals.
Study modern acting techniques and critical approaches to theatre
Develop your performance skills
Our BA (Hons) Acting degree is a practical and performance-based course that develops the skills for professionally directed productions. You will focus on traditional skills used within Stanislavski’s system of acting, as well as incorporating methods and techniques from contemporary theatre.
You will also have opportunities to broaden your acting horizons through the study of motion capture, voice work and showcasing.
Expand your critical knowledge of theatre
Alongside your performance skills you will develop ability to critically understand theatre spaces, productions, texts, and cultures, as well as explore the concepts of modernism, romanticism, and post-modernism within theatrical contexts.
You will explore the concepts of narrative, physical theatre, verbatim theatre and cultural identity, clowning, Shakespeare, and children’s theatre.
Work with industry professionals
In your third year, you will have the chance to work with a professional playwright, director, and production team to perform a major part in a play. It will not only give you the chance to display your talents, but also act as a vital networking opportunity to help your future career within the industry.
Cycle weeks give you the opportunity to explore different areas of theatre performance throughout your degree. Three times a year every year, you will have the option to choose one of four areas to participate in alongside students from other courses within the Theatre Department:
These projects allow you to showcase your talents and ideas in a supportive and collaborative environment, as well as gain experience in a variety of roles in putting on a production.
Select a year
Acting Skills 1: Foundations
This module develops your the intellectual, physical and emotional foundations for an effective actor’s process. With weekly classes in key areas of skill development for the actor, you will concentrate on the voice, the body and approaches to acting that will provide the basis for the continued development of your craft.
Acting Skills 2: Voice, Text and Body
This module deepens your engagement with movement and voice as part of the actor’s craft. With weekly classes in key areas of skill development for the actor, you will also engage with more specific skill sets including approaches to text and acting for camera.
Critical and Cultural Theory 1: Theory-Lite
The aim of this module is to introduce students to a variety of theoretical, cultural and critical ideas used in the practice and evaluation of the arts. It aims to explore ways of describing, analysing and interpreting theoretical concepts that are vital to an understanding of the arts. Vocabularies and models such as intersectionality that describe the cultures in which the arts are seen and made are drawn upon and developed in order to explore the methods by which meanings are created and understood in the arts.
Critical and Cultural Theory 2: Modernism
This module interrogates the changing theoretical models and perspectives of the period that is often categorised as ‘Modernist’. You will explore, examine and debate the historical, social, cultural and theoretical influence of Modernism(s) challenge to traditional structures, forms and styles and investigate the impact this has upon contemporary arts practice.
Beginning with Stanislavski’s later research into the craft of the actor, and continued and developed in the research of Meyerhold, Grotowski, and others, this module serves as an introduction to Physical Theatre (devising) practices. It builds on skills learned elsewhere in the programme and offers compositional, intellectual, and methodological skills and techniques for you to use to create new theatre work.
Text and Performance
This module introduces you to practices and methodologies for making text-based devised theatre. It is especially directed towards theories and practices of ‘adaptation’ and reworking’ and designed to encourage you to find new ways to stage and adapt dramatic texts. the module starts with a series of lectures on the adaptation theory, before moving onto adaptations of Shakespeare and the restoration stage, onto theories of contemporary stage adaptation with a particular emphasis on texts, and finally playwrights from the late 20th and 21st century.
Theatre Project: Narrative
This module explores a variety of stimuli for performance-based devised theatre products, with a particular emphasis on narrative. It aims to investigate different approaches to devised story-telling theatre and identify specific crafting devices and methodologies to develop work.
Theatre Project: Site Specific
This module encourages you to consider the possible relationships of performance to everyday experience, society and political/historical contexts. Through the analysis of a range of site-specific practices, you will explore geographic, architectural and philosophical approaches to the creation of site-specific theatre. You will question the various definitions of “Site-Specific” practice, developing your critical awareness and understanding of how performance interrogates ideas of place and space.
Acting Skills 3: Devised Text and Character
This module develops your devising, screen acting and singing skills as you produce a staged performance scene, a self-tape and a song performance. the module aims to establish an advanced vocabulary in the articulation of acting approaches and understanding of the intellectual and creative processes involved in acting in different mediums.
Acting Skills 4 (Classical Theatre)
The module offers you an introduction to Classical Theatre (Renaissance Drama) in performance. It further develops your vocal and physical ability, together with writing and dramaturgical study. You develop understanding of the impact of performance in relation to both historical and contemporary contexts and implications of classical performance.
Children and Young People’s Theatre
This module introduces you to a number of examples of innovative contemporary theatre work for children and young audiences in the UK. You will produce your own short (20-30 min) work for children ensuring that a dialogic relationship with students inform their research agendas and devising methodologies. Your compositions and professional work are analysed and evaluated with specific reference to appropriate devising methodologies and theatrical concerns.
Clown, Comedy and Mask
In this module, you will explore specialist field of physical theatre and performance. You will examine its historical roots in Commedia dell’Arte, through into a study of the contemporary practice and art of the theatre clown. You will consider the historical function and influence of the clown and its place in contemporary theatre through practice and self-evaluation. Using neutral mask and the transformative qualities of the red nose mask, the module explores physically led approaches to improvisation, character and comic performance, alongside a critical, creative and cultural questioning of the functions and constructions of collectively devised comedy.
Critical and Cultural Theory 3: Romanticism
This module explores the importance of revolution, the sublime, the gothic, landscape, and imagination as motive forces in the making of art and culture. By examining the notion that Classicism and Romanticism are opposites, as the reaction of many 19th century artists to 18th century Enlightenment would appear to demonstrate, the module aims to investigate notions such as wilderness, fantasy, heroism and nationalism and to initiate a discourse between the art of the present day and that of 19th century romanticism.
Critical and Cultural Theory 4: Postmodernism
This module relates theories of postmodernism to contemporary arts practice. It begins by considering postmodernism’s relationships to both romanticism and modernism, exploring ‘definitions’ of postmodernism and illustrating postmodern features in a range of arts practices. A selection of postmodern term and practices such as Pastiche, Hyperreality, Event, a crisis in subjectivity, Intertextuality, the merging of ‘high’ and ‘low’ art, Deconstruction and recognition of the ‘Other’ are explored in more detail in relation to specific arts practices and texts. the module also allows you to debate the cultural, social and philosophical implications and validity of postmodernism for arts practice today.
Drama in Education
This module examines the role of drama in educational contexts and applies devised theatre concepts, facilitation skills and pedagogical considerations in the design and development of educational theatre: workshops and performance.
Gender, Sexuality and Theatre
This module will develop your critical understanding and creative engagement with how notions of gender and sexuality inform approaches to the creation and analysis of theatre and performance. It aims to examine a variety of artistic approaches to the politicisation of gender and sexuality in contemporary performance. Rooted in a critical understanding of feminist discourse and gender studies, the module introduces you to the work of key artists and performance theorists, providing appropriate case-studies to frame the creation of the student’s own performance work.
Production 1: Ensemble Practices
This module provides you with extensive performance and production experience, as you explore the devising process rooted in character narrative, specifically in relation to dance theatre. You will be given insight into the way that characters can define (and hinder) a clear making process and, in the process, will consider structural processes, such as narrative as a key determinate to the progression of the piece.
Production 2 (Classical Theatre)
The module offers you an opportunity to build on your skills and knowledge of Classical Theatre by participating in a major community performance of a Shakespeare (or contemporary) play in a contemporary educational context.
Theatre, Politics and Activism
This module aims to explore the relationships between theatre and politics, alongside the idea of theatre as politics post-Brecht. You will be introduced to a number of artists and theorists exploring political ways of thinking about theatre and political approaches to theatrical engagement.
Visual and Technical Arts
This module aims to introduce and develop key skills and practices in Visual and Technical Arts in/for (devised) theatre and performance. This module caters to a visual and technical arts-related practice and is underpinned -practical and theoretically -accordingly. This module is for students wishing to develop their knowledge and skills in making work that deals with methods drawn from the Visual Arts and as such encompass a range of possible routes for exploration: Multimedia Performance, Installation Art, Photography and Video, Sound and Sonic Art, Time-Based Art, Live Art and related ‘Fine’ Art practices.
You will have an opportunity to select an area of study of your choice over an extended period, to research and present their findings in written form.
The module offers you the opportunity to work in an ensemble, as you develop your creative and performance vocabulary in a major performance of an original theatrical event.
The module offers you the opportunity to perform a major part within a modern written play, working in an ensemble, under the direction and supervision of staff or visiting director.
This module provides you with an understanding of the extant professional working protocols and practices of the acting industry. You are mentored by a series of guest lecturers, who offer specialisms across the diverse spectrum of professional practice. the Education and Outreach department at the Chichester Festival Theatre will compliment the delivery of the module, providing bespoke sessions.
This module develops your devising, expressive and communication skills in solo performance.
This modules allows you to practically engage with a specialist acting style and methodology to gain focused skills in a specific acting technique.
Teaching and Assessment
Feel the support of expert and industry-experienced acting tutors
In the first year you can expect to attend six hours per week of taught skills classes, at least four hours of rehearsals for third year directing exercises, six hours of project classes, at least six hours of group rehearsal and two hours of lectures and seminars.
You should also expect at least six hours of timetabled personal study and preparation. This amounts to 30 hours per week during term time.
Skills development sessions are taught by a range of dedicated specialists in small classes of about fifteen, whereas some modules are taught in lecturers and small seminar groups.
You will be assessed through a range of assignments including practical and performance contexts. These assessments will include group and individual performances, directing exercises, presentations, creative installations, and essays.
During your degree you will be involved in at least twelve examined performances, including three major productions, over the three years. There are no formal exams.
Discover a collaborative creative community and dedicated performance spaces
The ShowRoom is recognised nationally for presenting some of the most exciting companies touring on the UK circuit, and the programme is shaped to support the learning of students.
We often run workshops and post-show discussion for Theatre students with visiting artists. We believe that one of the best ways to learn about professional theatre is by watching a training with arts industry professionals. This is at the heart of the ShowRoom’s ambition.
The ShowRoom is highly adaptable, with retractable seating, making it an excellent teaching and workshop space in addition to its role as a venue. It is run by our Theatre Manager and Department Technician, who work closely with our students, helping them to realise creative and adventurous ideas in a professional working space.
Other facilities include:
- Studio spaces exclusive to the department
- Rehearsal Rooms
- Recording studio
- Editing facilities
- Audio/visual equipment
- In-house lighting and sound technicians to assist student projects
Gain vital experience within the theatre industry
Our BA (Hons) Acting course has a strong vocational focus and supports you to find work in professional contexts.
You will benefit from the Theatre Department’s excellent links with the professional theatre industry and have opportunities to work closely with a range of artists, theatre companies, producers, and festival programmers.
Past students have had opportunities for placements with:
- The Chichester Festival Theatre
- Total Theatre Awards, Edinburgh Festival
- Forest Fringe, Edinburgh
- The Marlborough, Brighton
- The Paper Birds Theatre Company, Leeds
- Arts Admin, London
- Bootworks Theatre
- The Basement, Brighton
- Battersea Arts Centre, London
- Search Party
- Brian Lobel
- Schools and outreach environments
Explore the opportunity to study part of your course abroad
As a student at the University of Chichester, you can explore opportunities to study abroad during your studies as you enrich and broaden your educational experiences.
Students who have undertaken this in the past have found it to be an amazing experience to broaden their horizons, a great opportunity to meet new people, undertake further travelling and to immerse themselves within a new culture.
You will be fully supported throughout the process to help find the right destination institution for you and your course. We can take you through everything that you will need to consider, from visas to financial support, to help ensure that you can get the best out of your time studying abroad.
Pursue a variety of creative performance careers
Our BA (Hons) Acting degree will prepare you for a range of careers after you graduate.
Across all three years of the course, you are engaged in a developed vocational programme designed to cultivate significant skills, ideas, and experiences relevant to creative performance careers.
You could choose to continue your studies at postgraduate level.
Study options at the University of Chichester include:
- MA Theatre
Course Fees 2023/24
Typical offers (individual offers may vary):
You will need to attend an audition. You will present two prepared speeches, discuss your interests with staff, share ideas for making theatre and take part in a devising workshop. You will have the opportunity to meet current students over lunch.
Interviews and Auditions
Auditions and interviews usually run from January until March/April.
We aim to offer you a genuine dialogue during your application process. This gives you a sense of worth and achievement from the audition process itself; a sense of ownership for you during the process and, ultimately, is an opportunity for us to get a clear understanding of who you are, what you need, and how we can best prepare you for your degree.
We judge you on your skills, your potential, and your personality, not your background.
Booking Your Audition
If you are invited to audition you will receive an email asking you to book your audition date on ChiView. If you are unsuccessful we will email you to let you know.
You can usually choose between multiple days on ChiView at one time. If none of the current dates suit you please contact email@example.com.
Once you have booked your audition, you will be able to access the audition guidance document on ChiView – just log into the ChiView portal, click on ‘Events schedule’ and then ‘View details’ to access the document, which will tell you how to prepare for your audition, what to expect on the day, etc.
If your situation changes and you can no longer attend your audition date, you should cancel your booking in ChiView by visiting your ‘Event Schedule’ and clicking ‘Cancel Attendance’. You also need to inform the admissions team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, so we can send you a new audition invitation.
Sometimes if you are viewing your ChiView portal on a phone you will not be able to see the page correctly. If this happens you should try again on another device.
You may need to clear your browser history.
If you are still unable to see the ‘View details’ button, please check that you have successfully booked your audition by clicking ‘respond to interview invitation’.
If all else fails please email email@example.com with your query and applicant number.
Your Audition Day
Once you have booked your audition, please log into the ChiView portal, click on ‘Events schedule’ and then ‘View details’ to access the audition guidance document, which will tell you (amongst other things) what will happen at the audition itself, a basic itinerary of the whole day, parking information, etc.
In brief, there should be an introductory talk by the department, the chance to meet lecturers and other applicants, as well as your opportunity to perform for the audition panel.
After Your Audition
After your audition, the panel will discuss your performance and pass our decision onto the admissions team, who will update UCAS and email you with the outcome, whatever it might be.
- We make bespoke offers: Your offer is specifically for you. If we offer less than your predicted grades, this will reflect the potential and quality of your audition and we’d like to take a bit of pressure off of you heading into your exams.
- We don’t do unconditional offers: Unless you already have your grades (you are a mature student), we will always insist on certain grade achievements because we want you to succeed in all aspects of your academic life including your A levels, BTEC, etc.
- If you do not get the grades you wanted: Don’t panic. You received an offer because you were good enough for the department at audition. On Results Day, just ring us on the clearing hotline, so we can discuss things with you.
- We may offer you a different course: We may offer you a place on an alternative, relevant course within the department, rather than offer you the course you applied for. If this is the case, we will state this in your offer letter/email and update your course on UCAS. We will explain our reasoning, which will revolve around placing you on the most appropriate course where we think you will thrive.
Frequently asked questions
How do I apply?
Click the ‘Apply now’ button to go to relevant UCAS page.
What are UCAS tariff points?
Many qualifications have a UCAS Tariff value. The score depends on the qualification, and the grade you achieved.
How do I know what my UCAS tariff points are?
Head to the UCAS Tariff Points web page where you can find a tariff points calculator that can tell you how much your qualification and grades are worth.