BA in Contemporary & Applied Theatre Studies (International)
The BA in Contemporary and Applied Theatre Studies is an innovative four year, full-time honours degree (Level 8) in drama and theatre studies but can be shortened to three years in the case of some international applicants. Launched in 2015, it is the first programme of its type in Ireland and gives students a round and broadly-based education in drama and theatre, and a specific set of skills in the contemporary and applied aspects of the field. It deals with all the general areas of drama, such as ensemble performance, the study of plays, theatre visits and studio practice. Students will have the opportunity to develop their own artistic skills and specialise in their own particular areas of interest. The programme will give participants a diverse, sophisticated and vocational experience.
Applied theatre is considered to be the study of drama and theatre across a range of practical applications and non-traditional settings, not defined by stage performance or the study of literary texts. Contemporary theatre signals that the programme will deal largely with current and emergent modes of theatrical production and reception.
Unique aspects of the BA CATS programme include:
- A unique qualification in drama not offered elsewhere on the island
- A strong balance of studio/workshop to classroom teaching
- Access to two professional theatres (Lime Tree Theatre & Belltable), their staff and facilities
- Participation, as part of coursework, in three full-scale productions, staged to professional standards
- Up to 15 theatre visits per year as part of the course
- The opportunity to engage with professional, touring and community-based theatre practitioners and projects
- The chance to develop a specialised set of skills and knowledge in areas such as drama facilitation, drama teaching, technical theatre, cultural policy and administration
- The four-year programme (Year 3 spent off campus) can include professional placements, giving students a unique range of contacts in an extensive range of arts organisations in Limerick, across the country and abroad
Modules & Off-Campus Programme
The programme focuses on the contemporary role of theatre and its practitioners in society. At its heart is the concept of ensemble, which values and emphasises the importance of the practice of the group and collective when working in drama. The idea of a pro-social theatre is also very important for our programme. This highlights how theatre can be used to engage with specific sites and audiences, and it exists not only as entertainment, but also has a core societal function. This programme will be offered in close association with the Lime Tree Theatre which is located on the College campus, and which has hosted over 100,000 patrons since opening as a professional venue in October 2012. Through our relationship with the Lime Tree and our other venue, the Belltable, students on the programme will be exposed to the best local, national and international practice through visiting companies, festivals, etc., and from the input of a range of visiting lecturers and practitioners. Teaching on the programme is research-led and informed by a practice-based approach. Students will encounter a range of classroom-based, studio-based and virtual learning contexts. Each module will be assessed independently of each other through continuous assessment and a variety of assessment methods each semester.
Three years of the BA CATS programme are delivered on campus at Mary Immaculate College, and one year (Year 3) on a professional work placement and/or a study abroad programme. Semesters 5 and/or 6 of the BA CATS Programme offers students the opportunity for work-based learning and professional placements are provided for students in a variety of relevant settings. If they so choose, students can also expand their knowledge and skills through international study in one of MIC's partner universities in Europe, North America and Australia.
Possible destinations for graduates include further academic study in the field of drama/theatre; or further vocational training in a specific discipline of drama/theatre such as acting, theatre design or stage management. Graduates may also enter employment with a theatre company or venue, or may work in a freelance capacity in some aspect of drama/theatre artistic practice. Graduates of the BA CATS programme may be particularly suited to work in the following specific disciplines of theatre:
- Community theatre
- Theatre for Young Audiences
- Youth Theatre
- Theatre in Education
- Drama education/teaching
- Street theatre
- Theatre for development;
- Museum theatre
- Reminiscence theatre
- Theatre in health education
- Technical theatre
- Documentary/Verbatim theatre
- Site-specific theatre