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Creative Actor

Course Code: UFM0002

Level: 5
Subject area: Performing Arts & Live Events
Awarding body: Plymouth Marjon University
Qualification: Foundation Degree
Course type: Full-time
Time of Day: Daytime
Duration: Two years
When you'll study: Various days and times

Choose A Start Date & Apply
About the course

The Foundation Degree will enable you to develop the creative, technical and employability skills essential for working in today’s highly diverse performing arts industry. This course focuses strongly on re-imagining traditional theatre forms (mask, puppet, commedia dell’arte), many of which, while strongly present in actor training in Europe and further abroad, are slowly disappearing from contemporary actor training in the UK. The course has, at its heart, an approach to actor training that sits outside the ‘applied Stanislavski’ model that dominates actor training in the UK. It looks to Europe and beyond, to the schools of training characterised by the teachings of Jacques Lecoq, Phillippe Gaulier, Michael Chekhov and Monica Pagneux, and further developed in the UK by John Wright and companies like ‘Told By An Idiot’, ‘Rash Dash’, ‘Red Ladder’ and ‘The Rude Mechanicals’.  Studying this course, you will often find yourself working outside of a traditional theatre building base.

What you'll learn

The Foundation Degree is taught by academics and professionals from a variety of creative and performing arts  industries. It is delivered through formal teaching (lectures and workshops), supplemented by training in core practical skills development. It also provides you with the option to engage in real world performance, through participation in professionally commissioned and directed productions, across both years of the course. You will benefit from a rich mix of theoretical and practical training for theatre and performance, and will graduate with an intellectual and practical understanding and knowledge of the industry, alongside a working portfolio and the tools necessary to launch a career in the creative and performing arts industries.

First year modules:
Crafting performance
This module explores the creative and practical processes involved in developing a performance from concept through to touring production.

Playing the object
This module explores a range of performance techniques that relate to object and puppet theatre. You will develop skills in a range of specialist areas, from traditional and contemporary sources.

Playing the mask
This module explores the creation and development of performance through the focused manipulation of a range of masks and mask performance techniques.

Creative voice
This module focuses on developing the technical and artistic skills of the voice.

Creative body
This module is a partner module to ‘creative voice’ and focuses on developing the technical and expressive skills of the actor’s body.

The playful actor
This module takes a non-naturalistic approach to actor training and will explore playfulness, openness,  spontaneity and awareness of what it means for the actor to be ‘present’ and ‘in the moment’.

Second year modules:
Research in practice
This module explores essential skills and tools necessary to develop entrepreneurial agency in the world of theatre.

The playful actor two
This module is a further development of ‘the playful actor’ module. You will continue to explore notions of playfulness, spontaneity and awareness of what it means to be a ‘creative actor’, provoke the space, and take risks in the moment of ‘playing’.

Creative voice two
The purpose of this module is to deepen, broaden and develop skills in vocal performance technique. As well as working at a higher level of technique, this module expands upon the first year by placing a strong focus on independent practice.

Creative body two
The purpose of this module is to deepen, broaden and develop skills in physical performance technique. As well as working at a higher level of technique, this module expands upon the first year by placing a strong focus on independent practice.

The actor and the ensemble
This module explores techniques for creating ensemble focused performance work, investigating a variety of contemporary approaches to ensemble performance.

Playing Shakespeare
This module engages you in a contemporary approach to working with the language of Shakespeare.  You will engage with verse speaking, metre, structure and meaning. This module brings together many of the strands of the course and enables you to explore and experiment with heightened language.

Entry requirements

We welcome applications from those who have all of the following:

  • 64 UCAS tariff points (to include a full level 3 qualification)
  • five GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above, to include English and maths

or alternatively:

  • equivalent qualifications
  • relevant work experience.

Should entry requirements not be met then individual cases will be considered.

You will be expected to pass an audition before being offered a place.

International students will be expected to meet the English language requirements of IELTS 5.5 or equivalent and have the equivalent of the above level 3 qualifications or professional experience


There are no exams. Assessment methods include:

A critical written response to a question or title related to an aspect of live or pre-recorded performance.

Essay outline
A short and early assignment.

A self-reflexive, critical piece of writing that provides a theoretical and academic context for a piece of practical work.

A collection of assessments covering the learning outcomes of the module, which usually takes several different forms such as reports, evaluations, presentations, tasks utilising various media formats.

Practical performance assessment
A piece of creative practical work, either undertaken in groups or individually realised, enabling students to engage the actor’s craft through the creative processes involved in live and pre-recorded performance.

Reflective journal
A descriptive account of the work undertaken, usually accompanying a practical project, which includes personal and group reflection. It will involve explanation and interpretation of processes and practices under consideration.

Research project
Detailed individual research or a sustained practical project, which is contextually grounded. All independent projects are negotiated with and supervised by an appropriate tutor.

Presentation of experience, knowledge and skills to peer group to evidence understanding and knowledge.

The assessed delivery of a practical workshop to peers to evidence skill and understanding.

What's next?

Upon successful completion you may progress to the BA (Hons) Professional Acting for Stage and Screen top-up degree at the College.

Important information

Fees quoted apply to courses starting in the academic year 2020/21 (August 2020 – July 2021). There may be a slight increase in fees for courses starting 2021/22.

If you are aged 16-18, due to Government funding, tuition fees may not be applicable for your course. (Please note: this does not apply to Foundation Degrees or Access to Higher Education courses, and other courses not eligible for public funding.)


Course Code: UFM0002

Course Fees

A Full Course Fee: £7450

B Reduced Course Fee (for those in receipt of qualifying benefits): Not applicable to this course

C Ancillary course costs (ie books and equipment): Not applicable to this course

D Advanced Learner Loan Fee: Not applicable to this course

How old are you? How much will you pay?
16 - 17 This course is not usually available to this age group. Please contact or phone reception on 01752 305 300 for advice.
18 - 23 A
24+ A

Please note fees are quoted for one year only.