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Scholarly and practice-led research in the performing arts constitutes a key area of the University of Surrey's intellectual activity. Our research-active staff focus on theories, philosophies and contemporary performance practices, regularly publishing and presenting their work – an ethos that we would encourage you, as a prospective postgraduate researcher, to share with us.
The School of Arts provides research opportunities across a broad range of interconnected subject areas in its Departments of Music & Media and Theatre & Dance, including dance, digital arts, music, theatre and sound recording. We cater for practice-based and academic study within a research environment distinguished by methodological innovation and intellectual pluralism. Facilities include studios, rehearsal rooms, a 200-seat theatre, a gallery, digital media labs, high-quality recording facilities and extensive archives.
Key research areas include:
• Contemporary dance and dance theatre
• Critical dance theory
• Dance on screen and new media
• Movement visualization and analysis
• Practice as research (PaR)
• New media design, interaction design
• Digital storytelling; new media and community
• Shakespearean drama
• 20th and 21st-century experimental theatre and performance
• Avant-garde and counter-cultural history
• Devising and collaboration
• Dramaturgy, directing and devising
• Economies of performance
• Phenomenological approaches to performance
• Performance philosophy (especially Deleuze)
• PhD in Dance
• PhD in Digital Media Arts
• PhD in Performance
• PhD in Theatre
Research degrees overview
Our research degrees in performing arts prepare you for success at each stage of your PhD project development. The structure is designed to provide intensive graduate preparation for a future career and is suitable for either part-time or full-time candidates. Completion of the programme entails submission of a thesis, the submission of practice if undertaking a practice-based PhD, and an oral viva with external examiners.
Supervision in theatre and performance is offered by staff in both Theatre Studies and the Guildford School of Acting.
PhD students in all programmes in the School of Arts can expect three levels of research training:
1) University-level training provided by the Postgraduate Skills Development Programme and the University Library, including a PhD induction, workshops on writing skills and preparation for the confirmation and viva. There is also an annual student-led University Postgraduate conference.
2) School-level training is offered in the form of interdisciplinary seminars, reading groups, visiting speaker events and conferences.
3) Students will also receive subject-specific training that will vary depending on their programme. You may participate in research "intensives", featuring formal presentations of work by students, keynote seminars, study groups on current themes in Arts research, and research skills training sessions. You may meet regularly for debate and discussion and participate in annual formal presentations of research.
For all our research degrees in performing arts, entry is on the basis of a good honours degree and usually an MA in a relevant arts subject or appropriate professional experience. Candidates submitting proposals that include practice-based research will be required to evidence appropriate experience and expertise in the relevant area of practice. Students are initially registered for a PhD with probationary status and, subject to satisfactory progress, are subsequently confirmed as having PhD status. Non-native speakers of English are required to have IELTS 6.5 or above. Auditions will be held for entry to some programmes. Please see online for further details.
Studentship opportunities - October 2016 entry
Deadline for Studentship application 4pm 12 January 2016
• AHRC TECHNE Doctoral Training Partnership studentships: As a member of the TECHNE Doctoral Training Partnership, the University of Surrey invites applications for Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) studentships (stipend and fee waiver). Fully funded doctoral awards are available at the University of Surrey in Music, Sound and Sonic Arts. http://www.surrey.ac.uk/fass/research/studentships/ahrc/index.htm
• Internal studentships are available for top-quality students, covering tuition fees at the Home/EU rate and maintenance at current research-council rates for full-time or part-time study. http://www.surrey.ac.uk/fass/research/studentships/index.htm
For full programme information and information on how to apply, please visit:
Some or all of the PhD opportunities in this programme have funding attached. Applications for this programme are welcome from suitably qualified candidates worldwide. Funding may only be available to a limited set of nationalities and you should read the full programme details for further information.