Train with theatre company The Actors Wheel as a creative and entrepreneurial performer, gaining experience in performing in a wide range of venues and contexts. Please note this programme is currently subject to approval.
Three A-levels at grades CCC or above
Or BTEC triple grades MMM or above
Or Access 23-45 D/M with min 6D
Or T levels P (C+)
And GCSE English Language at grade 4 or grade C or above
Applicants with other qualifications are welcome to apply
UCAS points 96
UCAS code W410
UCAS institution code P63
Duration 3 years full time
Contact Charley Lumley, our Applicant Support Coordinator, if you have any questions. Email firstname.lastname@example.org and Charley will get back to you.
Taught by academics and theatre professionals actively researching and making work in the industry, this programme will help to connect you with theatre companies and cultural organisations in the city of Plymouth and beyond, both nationally and internationally. It will prepare you for your future career through focused training not only in performing and in critical thinking, but also in self-producing, self-marketing and entrepreneurship, teaching you how to set up a company, apply for acting jobs, and organise a tour.
Through practical training and seminar discussions, this course will develop your acting and performance-making skills and your theoretical understanding, and encourage you to think deeply about theatre, culture,and society. In each year you will build specialisms, for example in physical theatre and naturalism in year one, in experimental practice and acting for media in year two, and in community theatre and international tour preparation in year three.
You will take part in three major productions as well as smaller shows, one each year, performing to diverse audiences as well as invited industry contacts. As well as working within the vibrant Marjon Arts Centre in the Quad Theatre, our 300-seat theatre, and the Tempest, our black box studio, you will be given opportunity to work and train in a variety of leading and fringe theatre venues across the UK and internationally, with local links combined with international expertise to guide your journey into further study and/or industry.
Taught by theatre professionals and expert researchers with a wealth of experience, this course features unique links with theatre makers and companies. You will have opportunity to connect with and learn from artists active in the field of theatre and performance.
Our core staff team is led by director Ellie Chadwick (previous work at Barbican Guildhall London, Exeter Phoenix, Jackson's Lane London, Trinity Centre Bristol, Tate Modern London), and includes performance maker Sharon Smith (member of international collective Gob Squad), performance artist Natalie Raven (work presented across Europe and North America).
Additionally, we have arts practitioner Kate Massey-Chase (experienced facilitator of community projects, including in prisons, addiction recovery services, mental health services, with young refugees, adults with Parkinson’s, and in schools) and performer/director Karma Tucker (experienced singer, dancer, actor, and director of professional and youth theatre with recent productions in the South West and London).
Past guest lecturers on our performing arts programmes include director Natasha Nixon (previous work at West End, The National Theatre, The Young Vic Theatre, Lyric Hammersmith), actor Alice Feetham (as seen in TV series Save Me) and actor Adam Courting (voice actor for BBC Radio 4).
The black box performance theatre is a large and versatile 300-seat space. Some acting students are rehearsing while other students look on. It is used for a variety of events and performances.
Opportunity for local, national, and international touring across all 3 years of study
Strong alumni network of working acting professionals
Work, study, and perform in a 300-seat theatre and black box studio within the vibrant Marjon Arts Centre
Train in our state of the art radio and TV studios on site at BBC Broadcasting House in Plymouth
Industry-focused modules with collaboration opportunities, including working in collaboration with established companies within the locality - as well as further afield.
Create an original work ready to tour, a business plan and marketing materials including headshots, and show and voice reels
I chose this course at Marjon because I was interested in finding out and working on different aspects of acting. There are many things about this course that I enjoy. For example, in first year I did a classical performance where we looked at Shakespeare. Within this module, there was an audition process and we learnt about what often happens in an audition and then put it to practice to help build confidence. This has encouraged me to audition for other opportunities outside of university. N
“I have been given opportunities that I wouldn’t get anywhere else. I performed at The Minack Theatre in Cornwall, I remember standing on the stage staring out to the stormy sea, and I thought “this is what I am trained for”. I have been pushed outside my of comfort zone but for the better, I now have the confidence to go for auditions. When I came to Marjon I had lost sight of where I wanted to go but now I’m ready to start a PGCE to train as a Drama teacher. Thank you Marjon - for everything.”
"This course gives me the opportunity to tour not only regionally and later, the country, but to experience performing internationally. With a wide range of industry experience inbetween; from camera work to physical theatre; Shakespeare to Beckett. The course gives me the time to find my strengths and weaknesses, what I like and dislike doing within the industry."
How do I set up my own theatre company, and how do I tour work?
What methods and techniques for training in acting and performance are there out there, and which ones suit me?
How can innovative digital media and technology enhance acting and performance?
How can I represent myself and express my identity on stage?
What routes to sustainable employment are open to me?
Can theatre impact positive social change?
Our graduates go on to work as actors in theatre, film and TV, a range of theatre industry roles including technical roles, playwrighting, front of house management, directing and running their own theatre companies.
Students also develop the thinking and critical skills needed to go on to postgraduate study such as qualifying to teach drama in schools.
Every lecturer is a practicing professional in their field ensuring they are up to date with current industry practice, we also draw on an extensive network of visiting industry professionals and directors.
Students are taught through reflective praxis, which is a process of learning through doing and reflecting. This includes practical skills training, practical classes exploring acting for different theatre and media forms, rehearsal and performance, reflection and engaging with current industry debates.
Students are taught through weekly classes alternated with blocks of intense daily rehearsals for productions.
Students are assessed through practical work. This is supported by research and reflection which is assessed by presentations, written work such as essays and blogs, and discussion, to ensure students develop the necessary communication skills for the industry. There are no written exams.
Ellie is a theatre practitioner and researcher with international experience. As a resident artist at the Watershed Pervasive Media Studio in Bristol with her company Sleight of Hand, Ellie directs and produces experimental theatre practice using immersive technologies and community-engaged approaches. She has previously worked for the University of Bristol, the University of Warwick, and Shanghai Theatre Academy. In addition to teaching at Marjon, Ellie continues to work for a variety of companies and venues as a freelance theatre director in London, the South West, and further afield.
Fees UK students: £9,250 per annum
Fees for International students: £12,500 per annum
This fee covers your tuition and access to course-specific equipment and facilities, as well associated services including access to the library, study skills support, IT support, student support and wellbeing services and membership of the Student Union. There may be additional costs by course.
Our Student Funding Advisors offer confidential and impartial advice about your funding options.Learn more
Kate is an experienced Performing Arts teacher. She is passionate about social justice and the use of drama and theatre for social and political purposes, and as a platform for individual or social change. She is currently researching the use of theatre in mental health contexts.
Dr Natalie Raven is a proudly working-class scholar and performance artist with over 15 years professional experience in industry, presenting and exhibiting her work across Europe and North America. She has teaching and research interests in: performer training; material and materiality in performance art; scenographic approaches to performance making; feminist performance (1960 - present); body-based performance practices; queer performance; semiotic and phenomenological approaches to performance making; re/presentations of self and identity in performance; site-specific performance in outdoor environments.
Karma directs musical theatre productions and teaches across a range of modules including Acting Through Song, Dance, Ensemble, Singing.
Training Company Model
By studying with us students automatically become a company member, as well as a student on the programme. We intentionally keep numbers small in order to enable our person centred approach to training, each student benefits from regular one to one tutorials in order to ensure their progression is tailored to the individual.
In addition to the structured course elements there will be numerous additional opportunities to develop your practice and CV which are actively encouraged.
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