English and drama

Thinking Through Theatre

Module code: Q3255
Level 4
30 credits in autumn teaching
Teaching method: Seminar, Film, Workshop, Tutorial *
Assessment modes: Coursework

Thinking Through Theatre will introduce you to a range of analytical, critical and practical issues and approaches that have an impact on how theatre is thought about and constructed. The module will broaden your understanding of what theatre is and how it can be made. In seminars you will discuss some of the important key terms, debates and ideas that inform and delimit theatre-making as a political, social and ideological arena of aesthetic practice. In parallel workshops you will explore and extend those ideas practically. Throughout the module you will be encouraged to develop a critical attitude to viewing, experiencing and making theatre and will be introduced to skills and techniques for developing socially responsible studio practices. Alongside seminars and workshops you will attend performances (inside and outside of class), which will inform weekly discussions. By working collaboratively to think through issues and develop material throughout the term you will gain relevant critical and practical skills necessary for working together effectively and generously for the duration of your degree.

The module aims to embed a fundamental idea that permeates the rest of the degree as a whole: that theatre 'thinks', that it processes concepts and issues in a way in which essays, for example, do not. Over the the course of the module you will be introduced to the different ways in which theatre 'thinks' about the world and the means it has at its disposal for effecting this.

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a knowledge of the issues and contexts involved in making contemporary theatre
  • Identify how performance 'thinks' when processing issues and themes
  • Summarize how theory relates to practice and practice to theory
  • Demonstrate practical and groupwork skills by means of performance