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MA Acting
1 Year Full-Time

The Masters Acting Programme is designed for ambitious and creative actors who want to further develop their skills through intensive practical masters level study. The MA will support actors in developing their repertoire and refining their signature style as a performer. 

The MA Acting is practice and performance based with substantial opportunity for the individual student to tailor the programme to their own needs and aspirations. 

Programme Aims
The programme aims to develop individuals who, on completion of the programme, will be able to demonstrate, at Master’s level, the ability to:

  • Demonstrate a clear and informed understanding of acting, performance and theatre practice

  • Work effectively and professionally with theatre makers and performers

  • Collaborate creatively with colleagues to create new theatre work that responds appropriately to differing needs, cultures, stimuli and contexts

  • Deploy a refined and critically informed methodology for the analysis of acting, theatre and performance

  • Exhibit a defined ‘personal’ style of acting and performance making

Unique Features of the Programme
The IAB is the only truly international institution of performing arts in Europe. It fosters an international approach to, and understanding of, theatre and performance. The IAB MA Acting programme has a number of distinguishing features, including:

  • The intensely practical performance driven nature of the programme

  • Opportunities to experiment with and create theatre and performance work

  • Relationships with the IAB partner MA in Dance and MA in Musical Theatre

  • A unique focus on the development of the informed and empowered actor

  • Its student centred, individual research approach to teaching and learning

Teaching and Learning Strategies
The MA Acting programme is committed to a student-centred approach with a strong emphasis on learning through doing. The majority of a student’s time will be spent in practical workshop and laboratory sessions, exploring the principles and practices of performance and contemporary theatre practice.

Students will participate in a substantial number of performance projects in a variety of settings and contexts. The programme will include specific and focused lecture programmes exploring the history, theory and context of global theatre. This will run parallel to a comprehensive programme of lectures and workshops in creative theatre producing.

Modules and Structure

The MA Acting consists of seven modules and is made up of 90 ECTS units (180 UK credits). The programme starts in September each year.

This module provides the student with a rounded actor training, primarily exploring the practices of Stanislavski – The work is intensive (with multiple sessions each week) and challenging. The work in this module will provide developmental support for both those with prior training in the method and for those from other backgrounds. The module is exclusively practical and performance driven. (10 ECTS Units)

The mastery of the voice and a clear understanding of the expressive and creative potential of movement are central to the acting process. This module, through multiple weekly sessions, explores voice and speech for the actor (both from a technical and a creative perspective) and movement techniques. Creative movement technique is explored using a multidisciplinary perspective. Thematically this module works in parallel to Acting techniques. (10 ECTS Units)

This module provides the student with the opportunity to engage in the exploration of narrative devices / conventions of realist theatre from both a practical and theoretical perspective. Within this module students will create two pieces of public performance, one of which will be a piece of student-devised / adapted micro-theatre, staged in a non-traditional performance venue. (10 ECTS Units)

This module explores alternative approaches to theatre making. The first part of the module will require the student to engage with, and develop performances using a range of non-mainstream theatre practices (the exact practices explored will be determined by the interest of the group) The second part of the module will involve students in exploring and performing plays written in heightened and/or poetic texts. (10 ECTS Units)

This module provides the student with a clear and practical understanding of theatre producing in a variety of contexts. Creative Theatre Producing is not explored as an abstract concept but as a set of real-world practical skills that will enable the student to realise his/her creative and artistic vision. (10 ECTS Units)

This module provides the student with the ability to contextualise and evaluate their own work and the work of others. Through this module students will critically engage with a range of theoretical and conceptual approaches relevant to contemporary performance practice. The module is also designed to support the student in the development of Master level research and writing skills. (10 ECTS Units)

The Final project is the culmination of the programme. The project allows each student to undertake a substantial and sustained body of practical, creative performance work with capitalizes on their experience, learning and aspirations and intentions as an artist.

Each student has the opportunity to negotiate their own plan and strategy for their studies. The Final project is shared between all MA students at the IAB and it is hoped that the project will see collaboration across the MA community. (30 ECTS Units)

Who is this Programme For?

The MA in Acting Programme is designed for mature and adventurous individuals who wish to develop or enhance their career as an actor. The MA Acting programme is designed for those with prior experience of theatre. The experience may come from undergraduate studies in the performing arts, professional theatre experience, or from long term and sustained amateur theatre experience.

Depending on choices made through the programme students may go on to careers across a broad spectrum of theatre and arts practice:

  • Actor (in diverse theatre forms)

  • Theatre Maker / Producer (in traditional and more unusual contexts)

  • Theatre facilitator (working with others in the creation of new work)

  • Educator / Community work (using theatre as an educational or community tool)

  • PhD Study

Applicants are normally required to have achieved a University degree in an area related to the performing arts. Those who hold unrelated degrees are also encouraged to apply if they can demonstrate substantial levels of performing arts experience as a theatre maker or performer. Applicants without degrees may apply if they are able to demonstrate that they have substantial and directly relevant professional or professional-level work experience (normally three years minimum).

MA Acting graduate Freya from Berlin talks about her year at IAB

Masters Acting show November 2018

Masters Acting show November 2018


Programme Details

Awarding Institution: Liverpool John Moores University

Tuition Fees for Courses Starting September 2020

The Tuition Fee category to select is normally determined by the country of your residence. To be eligible you must have had full residency status in that country for a minimum of six months prior to submission of your application to the IAB. We will ask you to provide proof of residency. 

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