Let’s prepare you to step into the performing arts industry.
Actively create, make and perform your own work, as well as collaborate with students from other courses across the arts school – these are all things you will get to do whilst in the process of improving and building your techniques and skills to a high standard on our Performing Arts course.
Hear from graduate Rees Matthews
The practical nature of the course ensures that you will be on your feet, doing what you love and working on live performances in theatre, site-specific venues, and festivals. You will be given recorded performance experience too, as you create films, audio dramas, animations, as well as immersive and multi-media events.
Your learning journey with us will be unique to you. Our small group sizes and high contact hours mean that you will be mentored by our experienced tutors to become the creative professional you want to be.
You may graduate to become a performer, actor (for stage or screen), professional dancer or physical actor, writer, director, choreographer, deviser, applied theatre practitioner, film-maker or digital artist. Or you may decide to go into postgraduate study or work in education, marketing, creative administration, or run your own company.
As part of your learning journey, you will have the opportunity to undertake work placements as well as work in multiple collaborations across other disciplines and with external industry professionals, giving you the ideal opportunity to meet and network with potential future collaborators or employers.
Explore student performances
Your Creative Career
- Performance Maker
- Solo Artist
- Theatre Practitioner
- Art Entrepreneur
More about the course
- Minimum age 18
- Successful interview or audition
- Academic achievement – we would normally expect applicants to haver achieved 80 UCAS Tariff Points at entry but whilst qualifications are important our offers are not solely based on academic results and we make offers based on other evidence of talent and suitability for the course.
- Mature students with related experience
- Applicants whose first language is not English and require a tier 4 student visa must achieve Level B2 in an approved secure English Language test prior to enrolment. For further guidance please visit the UK Visa and Immigration website www.gov.uk/student-visa
Your experience with us will be one of being mentored to become the creative professional you want to be. Part of this process will be the opportunity to undertake two bespoke work placements as well as work in multiple collaborations across other disciplines and with external industry professionals. You will work on live and recorded performances in theatre venues, ‘found’ venues, and festivals. You will create films, audio dramas, animations, as well as immersive and multi-media events.
You will get to create, devise, develop, perform, as well as collaborate with students from other courses across the arts school – an ideal opportunity to meet and network with potential future collaborators.
This course will allow you to discover what performance is and how you create it. You will be supported to freely explore and to develop a comprehensive repertoire of skills, such as: acting, movement, aerial circus, voice, writing, directing, choreography, puppetry, and mask.
Working in small groups, you will benefit from high levels of individual attention from tutors. Throughout the course, you will learn the practical skills you need to become a successful entrepreneur in the creative arts. These skills include: film editing, music making, website design, and business planning.
You will create several performances a year, collaborating with professional directors or art, music and film students. Your performances will be staged in a range of venues – from professional theatres, to festivals, and innovative performance spaces. Alongside this rich portfolio of work, you will also learn important marketing strategies to promote your own practice.
Studying Performing Arts at HCA offers the space, contact time and opportunities needed to establish a strong creative practice.
You will learn how to network and get into the industry by working with a wide variety of professionals from different areas of the Performing Arts, such as film and TV sets, repertory theatre and small-scale touring companies. All our tutors are actively engaged in the Performing Arts industry through their work outside of HCA.
Furthermore, you will have two work experiences – one in each of your first and second years. Projects with external directors/choreographers will also bring you valuable industry insights. Our students run their own performing arts company from the first year of the course. In your second year, you will learn how to write a business plan and set yourself up as a self-employed practitioner.
You will have the confidence built and your skills improved to help you be ready to take control of your own career as an innovative and self-sustaining performer and performance-maker. You can also explore broader opportunities in the creative arts such as art management or teaching, or transfer your creative and collaborative skills to other areas of employment or postgraduate study. In your third year, to help you take control of your career, you will provide you with a small personal professional development fund so you can book additional professional workshops or use it as an initial investment to set up a company.
The performing arts landscape has changed enormously over the last few years. It’s really important that students develop a wide range of skills. The way this course is structured, students are getting this really rich suitcase of tools to go out and into the real world.
A massive learning experience for me as a performer. The three years have shown me what I actually want to do, rather than just what I originally thought. I am naturally a hard worker, but this course has challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and make contacts with people in the Industry independently. I know exactly what I need to do to reach my dream job in the Industry.
This course opens up and shows you how much more you can actually do with performing arts – that’s why I have enjoyed it so much.
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What you will study
This is the start of your journey as a self-sustaining performance practitioner, armed with the performance skills and business know-how to survive and succeed in an incredibly rewarding but competitive industry. You will develop the technical skills of voice, movement and acting with a variety of public performance opportunities at local and regional theatres and venues. You will create a variety of collaborative projects, sometimes as part of commissions from external agencies and employers. Alongside these practical skills, you will explore different approaches to performance as well as a selection of modern and contemporary practitioners. Crucially, you will explore fundamental business models, arts funding and develop business skills. These will be developed through bespoke work placements and/or the setting up of small businesses under the Young Enterprise model.
You will continue to explore and develop practical performance skills and create work for public performance, including commissions from employers and external agencies in a variety of venues. In your second year the focus will be much more on cross disciplinary collaboration. Your performance and creative skills will be underpinned by more in-depth critical approaches to performance theory and practices as well as an awareness of the impact of new and emerging technologies, audiences and performance spaces. This will be enhanced by the study and exploration of contemporary practice, practitioners and companies that have successfully negotiated these new technologies, approaches and audiences. You will be also be challenged to develop a product/service and select a business model suitable to turn the product/service into a sustainable enterprise.
In your final year you will continue to develop and finesse your own creative and business identity through in-depth and focused theoretical and practical exploration which will feed into your Solo Practice and Extended Research Project(which may be a practical research project). In tandem with the forging of this solo identity, you will work on a major collaborative project for public viewing. By the end of your final year, you should be able to enter the profession through the skills, knowledge and networks you have accumulated over the three years or go on to further study.