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Dramaturgy and Playwriting (degree programme)

Tackle the challenging questions of theatre, art, and society through dramaturgy and playwriting with a creative and critical mind.

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Why study here?

The core of the programme is built around questions about art and theatre, a commitment to artistic processes and stage-related work. You will have a comprehensive view of dramaturgy, as it is seen as a mixture of elements, as the logic behind a performance, work or event. The programme explores both playwriting and comparative dramaturgy.

Content and objective of the programme

Dramaturgy is a dialogue between the different elements making up the play, the performance, the artwork or the event, and an interaction between the artistic whole and the audience and environment. Through a vibrant, critical world view and a thorough knowledge of the traditions of drama and theatre, you will acquire the tools needed for developing your dramaturgical thinking.

In the programme, dramaturgy is understood as more of a question rather than a perfect and complete system. The five-year degree programme approaches art and theatre in a spirit of questioning, experimentation and research.

The three-year bachelor’s studies must be completed before moving over to the two-year master’s studies.

The teaching in the Degree Programme in Dramaturgy and Playwriting is divided into four different areas:

  1. Playwriting and knowledge of drama
  2. Comparative dramaturgy and how to create a performance 
  3. Scriptwriting for different media, such as radio, TV, films, new media
  4. The work of a dramaturge in different areas of performing arts (literary dramaturge, production dramaturge, planner of programmes, curator or organiser of events)

In the programme, we strive for an open, questioning, and dialogic environment and for courage to encounter the challenging questions of theatre, art, and society with a creative and critical mind. You will need to put up with feelings of incompleteness and insecurity, and perhaps learn to utilise them in your work. 

Graduates of the programme can work as a playwright, dramaturge, scriptwriter, and a performance artist, among many other jobs, often switching between roles and perspectives. The goal is for the students to build a well-rounded competence that combines practice and theory and enables them to work in various kinds of work environments. 

Our graduates are skilled professionals and creative artists and researchers who produce new content and methods that will renew and challenge the fields of theatre and other performing arts.

Master’s studies

Master’s studies consist of independently selected study modules, joint activities of the degree programme and independent artistic work, as well as studies under the guidance of one’s tutor or the programme’s professor.

At the start of the studies, students will reflect on what they would like to focus on and create their initial work plan for their master’s studies revolving around one or several artistic questions. The goal is to create an atmosphere of artistic growth and experimentation, emphasising the slow journey of maturing into an artist. Aside from individual artistic development, we emphasise the collegiality and community spirit among students both within one’s personal degree programme and among all master’s students. 

The objective is that after completing a master’s degree, the student will be capable of versatile and independent thinking and artistic work in the field of dramaturgy. In the programme, students will learn to create dramas and performances that develop and shed light on contemporary dramatic, aesthetic, and ideological notions. Students acquire skills for developing their individual artistic characteristics and research-oriented attitude, which will give them the readiness to pursue doctoral studies.

Master’s studies in dramaturgy highlight the ability to grasp extensive artistic entities and to work independently as well as the readiness to analyse and reflect upon one’s own work. Students are expected to perceive their field and their own work as part of a larger context of art, culture, and society. The Degree Programme in Dramaturgy and Playwriting aims to educate professionals and creative artists and researchers who produce new content and methods that will renew and challenge the fields of theatre and other performing arts. 

New students to master’s studies are admitted every other year. Each year, students may apply either to master’s studies offered by the Theatre Academy or Master’s Studies in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research arranged as an international collaboration project.

Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research, 120 cr

The two-year Master’s studies in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research are organised as a collaboration with Goethe-Universität in Frankfurt, Université Libre in Brussels, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre in Paris and KHiO, the Oslo National Academy of the Arts. Students will complete a minimum of one academic term as an exchange student in one of the partnering schools; in other words, at least a fourth of studies will take place in the form of study exchange. It is also possible to spend a total of one academic year as an exchange student, in one or several locations. Each student of comparative dramaturgy plans out their own study path together with the professor. Studies are full-time and attendance is mandatory. Teachers responsible for Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research studies 

A comparative dramaturge engages with such dramaturgical, process-based work occurring in the field of performing arts that is not limited simply to the dramaturgy of the text but also covers other areas of performance (e.g. movement, lighting, sound, costume, space, audience participation). Graduates acquire a diverse understanding of dramaturgy as well as the ability to engage in cooperation that exceeds the boundaries of different fields of art, nations and working cultures. 

New students to Master’s studies in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research are admitted every other year.

Teachers

The Degree Programme in Dramaturgy uses a tutor system, in which each student has one of the permanent teachers of the degree programme as their personal tutor. Some of the studies are arranged in the form of one-on-one artistic and pedagogical discussions with the tutor. 

Teachers in the degree programme (to be updated in December)

Applying to the programme

Our University is one of the most sought-after places to study in Finland. Browse the admissions statistics from previous years.

Doctoral studies

It is possible to complete a licentiate and a doctoral degree at the University as a third-cycle degree. After graduating with a master’s degree, you will have the option to apply for doctoral studies in theatre and drama and specialise in research-oriented, artistic or applied doctoral studies.