School of Art, Design and Architecture

BA (Hons) Musical Theatre

UCAS tariff 104
UCAS course code W312
Institution code P60
Duration 3 years (+ optional placement)
Course type Full-time
Location Plymouth

Train to be an accomplished Musical Theatre performer by working with experts from the University and Theatre Royal Plymouth, one of the UK’s largest regional theatres. Dissect original productions like NHS The Musical, network with local practitioners and get on stage at Plymouth Fringe. Learn through hands-on workshops with expert performers. Develop your acting through song in our award-winning theatre and build your dance technique in our sprung-floor studios.

Musical Theatre

Foundation-year courses

Whether you haven't yet submitted your application, you're worried about whether university is for you, or if you don't meet the entry requirements to apply for a three-year degree, a foundation year may be the perfect route to a full degree.
Our foundation year courses are specifically designed to introduce and develop essential skills for success in higher education.
Students rehearsing, theatre, performance, acting, musical.

Careers with this subject

Benefit from a highly practical and vocational course allowing you to develop real-world skills and expertise in musical theatre performance.
Progressive and socially-engaged, this course will also equip you with the practical, digital and transferable skills needed for tomorrow’s industry.
With dedicated support from our Placements Officer, you can engage with work-based learning opportunities, gain employability advice and receive guidance on your career progression.

Key features

  • Train with expert industry professionals and academic staff.
  • Showcase. Perform in a range of productions each year, leading to a final year showcase for industry.
  • Facilities. Rehearse and train in world-class and fully accessible award-winning theatre and studio space. Access all areas of theatre with our dedicated Tech team.
  • Placements. Access to our dedicated Placements Officer and a wide range of internships and volunteering opportunities with arts organisations across Plymouth and the South West. 154 placements this year for directors, producers, practitioners and performers including with paid placements with Jermyn Street Theatre (West End), Kneehigh and at Theatre Royal Plymouth.
  • Your degree will be taught by passionate people with experience from a wide range of academic and industry backgrounds who are driving real change in their fields.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • Introduction to the primary elements of musical theatre, with teaching in acting, dance and singing culminating in an end of year showcase performance.

    Core modules

    • Page to Stage 1: The Physical Action (ACT4002)

      In this module students work together, with leadership from staff to read, rehearse, design and present a number of fully realised scenes from plays. Students will experience all aspects of theatre production in a concentrated rehearsal process, with a performance at the end of each process.

    • History and Context of Musical Theatre (MTH4001)

      A lecture-seminar based module in which students are introduced to the histories and ideology of musical theatre and begin to situate musical theatre productions in their historical and cultural context. This module will include 2, 2 hour talks that introduce our School and programme level employability related opportunities and support, including details of the optional placement year.

    • Ensemble Singing Practice (MTH4002)

      This module explores ensemble singing practice through a wide variety of styles, from large scale musical numbers through to small group a cappella arrangements. Skills explored include musicianship, sight-reading, diction and language, vocal technique, vocal health, and part-singing.

    • Technique and Repertory (MTH4003)

      This module will develop students’ dance technique and physical skills through classes in jazz, ballet, contemporary dance and pilates. Students will engage with the aesthetic, technical and stylistic features of a variety of music theatre dance styles through the development of dance routines and combinations.

    • Acting the Song (MTH4005)

      This module gives students the opportunity to engage with the history of musical theatre through performance, engaging with the stylistic developments of the genre through the decades from operetta, Rogers and Hammerstein, the rock musical to Hamilton.

    • Ensemble Singing 1 and Music Theory (MTH4006)

      This module introduces ensemble singing practice exploring unison and part songs in a variety of musical styles. Rudimentary music theory will also be taught which will include understanding notation, musical terms, symbols and signs as well as interpretating the musical score. Other skills explored may include musicianship, sight-reading, diction and language, vocal technique and vocal health

  • Year 2

  • Deepen your training in Musical Theatre – learn advanced acting or dance techniques and synthesise these in production. You also have the option to study acting for radio, for voice-over and computer games, or dramatic writing and audio recording. 

    Core modules

    • Showcase 2 (MTH5002)

      This module asks you to further develop your technical dance, singing and acting skills in showcase performance. This module builds on the experience gained from the showcase module in the first year, and asks students to explore more technically challenging material from different genres of musical theatre. This module equips students with greater confidence and autonomy in rehearsal and performance to develop material for employability purposes - this can include showcase scenes as well as showreel-suitable material.

    • Main House Production 2 (MTH5003)

      Main House Production 2 gives students the opportunity to apply all that they have learnt on the programme so far in a staged performance open to the public. Students will acquire new skills and develop resilience from performing in a more complex and demanding piece of theatre.

    • Performance Practices (PER5002)

      This module encourages students to find their creative voice through the exploration and application of a specific performance practice. Students will develop and practically interrogate the skills and understandings that establish specific forms of contemporary performance practice as both skilled activities and culturally significant artistic statements.

    • Creative Research Project (MTH5004)

      Students will undertake an individual research project to examine the historic, social, political and artistic context of a Musical Theatre Production. Students will also creatively explore, propose and justify an original concept for a new production of the chosen piece and for a target audience.

    Optional modules

    • Dance Technique (DAN5001MX)

      Students will develop their technical dance skills and ability to apply a range of dynamic qualities and spatial properties in performance. The module will develop students’ understanding of dance as a cultural discourse and foster awareness and appreciation of other cultural dance forms. Students will engage with workshop participation and leading skills, as well as learning how to give, receive and use critical feedback.

    • Dancing for Camera (DAN5002MX)

      Taught by experienced practitioners, students learn to compose and perform dance for camera and to develop and edit material to produce high quality ‘screendance’. Screendance as a hybrid and interdisciplinary form will enable students to develop new ways to innovate and create choreography in the site-specificity of media space.

    • Acting through Song (MTH5001MX)

      Acting through song involves ‘telling the story’ and ‘selling the story’, as well as performance skills in characterisation and specific vocal expertise. Working from a range of scores and lyrics, students experiment with different approach to acting through song in a supportive salon environment, with tutor and peer feedback throughout.

    • Stage 2 Professional Development, Placement Preparation and Identifying Opportunities (SSC500)

      This module is for students in the School of Society and Culture who are interested in undertaking an optional placement in the third year of their programme. It supports students in their search, application, and preparation for the placement, including developing interview techniques and effective application materials (e.g. CVs , portfolios, and cover letters).

  • Optional placement year

  • Gain valuable skills and experience by completing an optional placement year.

    Core modules

    • School of Society and Culture Placement Year (SSC600)

      Students have the opportunity to gain work experience that will set them apart in the job market when they graduate by undertaking a 48-week optional placement year. This year allows them to apply and hone the knowledge and skills acquired from the previous years of their programme in the real world.

  • Final year

  • Curate your professional digital profile, meet and network with agents and casting directors and perform in your final end of year showcase.

    Core modules

    • Audition Technique (MTH6001)

      A technical guide to auditioning for musical theatre, with practical classes and real-world simulations supported by an introduction to expectations and practices around casting and professional representation.

    • Showcase 3: Digital Showcase (MTH6002)

      This module is all about getting your work out there and seen by agents, casting directors, producers, and potential employers. This module equips students to produce short-form digital showcase material and introduces and explores the concept of an online, professional ‘digital profile’.

    • Main House Production 3: Final Major Show (MTH6003)

      Main House Production 3 gives students the opportunity to apply all that they have learnt on the programme in a public, full scale musical theatre production, and to acquire new skills and stamina from performing in a complex and demanding full-length piece of theatre.

    • Performance Research (PER6001)

      Students will plan and conduct a research enquiry relevant to the application, practice and study of performance (including acting, dance, theatre, live art, and cross-form practices). Through lectures, workshops and tutorial guidance, students develop appropriate ways of collecting, analysing, documenting and organising material to present and evidence their research process and findings.

    Optional modules

    • Applied Dance (DAN6001MX)

      This module offers students access to community-based professionals and work-based experiences with a meaningful employability focus. Through co-taught seminars and independent practice students learn the skills to work with and for community groups, applying community dance practice and performance-making as a means to address real-world problems and social issues.

    • Choreography Repertory (MTH6004MX)

      Students learn, rehearse and perform dance repertory to a high standard. To support students’ ability to execute the choreography effectively a continued engagement with dance technique and its relationship to creative and performance skills is incorporated. Students will gain an understanding of their role as a contributing interpreter of this repertory and how to make this work their own.

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BA Musical Theatre Programme Specification 7157

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff


A level
104 points, including a minimum of 2 A levels, General Studies accepted.International Baccalaureate
26 points. If overseas and not studying English within IB, must have IELTS 6.0 overall with 5.5 in all other elements.
18 Unit BTEC National Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma
BTEC National Diploma modules
If you hold a BTEC qualification it is vital that you provide our Admissions team with details of the exact modules you have studied as part of the BTEC. Without this information we may be unable to process your application quickly and you could experience significant delays in the progress of your application to study with us. Please explicitly state the full list of modules within your qualification at the time of application.
All access courses
Pass a named Access to Higher Education Diploma (preferably performing arts, humanities or combined) with at least 33 credits at merit and/or distinction.
T level
Merit in any subject, music experience required alongside qualification.
Mathematics and English language grade C. Equivalent qualifications may be considered.
We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary. 
Diversity and accessibility are really important to us and so we audition all of our candidates, UK-based and international in a way that works for you and for FREE. 
All applicants will be asked to submit a video recording of a monologue and a song form the musical theatre repertoire.

Fees, costs and funding

Student 2023-2024 2024-2025
Home £9,250 £9,250
International £16,300 £17,100
Part time (Home) £770 £770
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per 10 credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. More information about fees and funding.

Additional costs

This course is delivered by the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business and more details of any additional costs associated with the faculty's courses are listed on the following page: Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business additional costs.

Tuition fees for optional placement years

The fee for all undergraduate students completing any part of their placement year in the UK in 2023/2024 is £1,850.
The fee for all undergraduate students completing their whole placement year outside the UK in 2023/2024 is £1,385.
Learn more about placement year tuition fees

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). 
UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code. 
To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.
Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email

Insight: Technique and Repertory

As the first module students will work on at the University, we will develop students’ dance technique and physical skills through classes in jazz, ballet, contemporary dance and pilates. This module aims to prepare students for auditions; what it feels like to be in that space, to try and pick up choreography quickly and feel confident so that they perform to the best of their ability. 
Dance trips and performance

The House

Take centre stage at The House, our cutting-edge theatre right on campus that allows you to hone your craft in world-class facilities. As a performance venue, The House attracts some of the best national and international theatre companies to the city, providing you with opportunities to build professional networks as you study.  

Steel Wire Tension Grid above the stage at the House
Audio Console
Rehearsal space with a lighting rig at the House

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