BA (Hons) Contemporary Performance

students working

93% of UWTSD’s Drama students agreed that they have been able to contact staff when they needed to – NSS 2017.

Contemporary Performance develops your originality, invention and collaborative skills for the world of performance

Our course principles are:

Challenging conventional methods in performance

Exploring your own style of creating and devising

Creating collaborative interdisciplinary pathways

Students can use this degree to follow further specialist study and training in:

  • Performance and collaborating with other arts disciplines
  • Professional performance work
  • Forming new performance companies and creating new work
  • Teaching
  • Further specialist study/training

Key Facts

UCAS Code: W47W
Institution Code: T80
Course Length:
3 years 6 years part time

Tuition Fees for 2018/19:
£9000 (Home/EU students)
£11000 (Overseas students)
Scholarships and Bursaries

Swansea College of Art
Contact Email:
Language Choice:


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Art & Design Bursary information


  • What we do here is like being on the frontline of performance, just like certain scientists are the front-liners of science...

    Georgios ArchontisBA (Hons) Contemporary Performance student

We focus our practice and study on exploration, experimentation and creativity in contemporary performance. We build upon traditional and conventional approaches to create new, boundary breaking theatre.

We challenge our students to explore what performance is and what it can be in order to foster the creation of new ideas and new work.

Year 1 follows a carefully structured programme that focuses on the fundamental skills of vocal and physical expression and creativity, working towards a final production.

Year 2 encourages the development of your skills as a creative performance practitioner. You will develop your own creative voice and your ability to make exciting original work. You will have contact with professionals from many different parts of the performance, entertainment and creative industries.

Year 3 gives you the opportunity to demonstrate your skills in making work, either in solo or ensemble projects. You will continue to develop your practical skills as a performance maker along with valuable research skills, showcasing your production work in interdisciplinary and independent projects.

Year 1 is a common foundation year with BA (Hons) Applied Drama

Year 1

  • Play & Creativity
  • Digital Arts in Performance
  • Voice & Body
  • Create & Perform
  • Contextual Studies
  • Reflective and Academic Skills

 Year 2

  • Physical Theatre
  • Performing Cultures
  • Site Specific Project
  • Boundaries of Performance
  • Practice as Research

Year 3

  • Advanced Practice
  • Independent Project
  • Investigating Performance
  • Professional Practice
  • Interdisciplinary Arts
  • International Independent Study Module (optional)

Modules are designed to give students an opportunity to gain a solid understanding of theory and the opportunity to put their own ideas into practice. The modules ensure that you have a strong foundation in the core skills needed to work in a competitive, creative professional environment.

Interdisciplinary focus
Our students explore the fundamentals of theatre and performance through specialist classes in voice, movement, theatre making and text.

Staff Expertise
Our staff are experts in creating performance and we work closely with visiting professionals who bring their own unique practice perspectives through weekly delivery, in performances, in workshops and in masterclasses. 

Our performing arts portfolio in Swansea has provided rigorous, challenging and inspirational creative industries training to an impressive spectrum of students over a 10 year span. Swansea offers a richness of unique sites, a vibrant centre and an evolving cultural landscape.

Guest lecturers bring in their local and international experience with wonderful opportunities to gain relevant, current and dynamic hands-on experience. Previous collaborators include: Re:Live, Mr. and Mrs. Clark, Organised Kaos, Volcano Theatre, Mark Winstanley, Morgan Thomas, and Marc Rees among many others. 

We also offer this programme as a part time study option. If you need flexibility in your study but are still passionate about training and developing your skills, then contact the programme director to discuss the ways in which our part time study pathway can meet your needs.

Students will work with our core staff:

Students may also have guest lectures from, or work with, visiting specialist performance practitioners. Previous professional practitioners have included: Mr and Mrs Clark, Organised Kaos, Marc Rees, Volcano Theatre, Re:Live, NTW, People Stand Up, Mark Winstanley, Carri Munn and Morgan Thomas, among many others. 

As part of the Swansea College of Art we also have direct access to guest lecturers who visit us directly from the film and TV industry, music and production sector and the art world.

All students will be assessed through a range of different methods. 

In addition to performance and workshop observation, you may be assessed through short presentations and written assignments such as project workbooks, essays and portfolios.

Importantly for you - there are no traditional examinations!

You will be invited to visit the University to take part in an interview/workshop.

Entry is based on individual merit as well as an academic profile which is ordinarily expected to be a minimum of 80 UCAS Tariff points.

Graduates from these programmes will have the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue careers in the following areas:

  • Performance and performance-making
  • Leaders of inclusive creative practice
  • Professional performance/production work
  • Forming new companies and creating original work
  • Working with Third Sector organisations and broader educational work
  • Further specialist study/training at postgraduate level for example PGCE

UK/EU Tuition Fees

Visit our UK/EU Tuition Fees section to find out more.

Overseas Tuition Fees

Visit our Overseas Fees section to find out more.

Bursaries and Scholarships

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit our Bursaries and Scholarships section.

Our students have access to a diverse range of equipment and resources, which in most cases are sufficient to complete their programme of study. We provide the basic materials necessary for students to develop their practical work within our extensive workshop and studio facilities. However, it is likely that performing arts students will incur some additional costs to extend their investigation of their personal practice. For example, purchasing their own specialised materials and equipment, joining in optional study trips, and printing.

In a broad and wonderfully varied creative industry, our degree programmes aim to prepare you to find your place and to get your voice heard! Whether that is by helping you start your career; advising upon further intensive training possibilities; or engaging in postgraduate study.

BA (Hons) Contemporary Performance programme offers you a wealth of opportunities to develop your practical and academic skills in the exploration and application of theatre and performance. You will always be encouraged and supported in your quest to become an independent practitioner, skilled and focused on your commitment to the value and significance of live performance.

The course is practical in nature but benefits from an academic foundation so that your practical skills are grounded in theoretical understanding and developed simultaneously.