Modules and Content
Course structure and content
Studies can only be commenced in the winter semester. The standard fulltime period of study is two years (four semesters). Two four-week internships must be completed in the course of these two years, generally during the academic breaks, as well as the Master’s exam, consisting of a practical and a theoretical section. The course of studies is divided into four content-related areas: theory, practice, communication and realisation, which comprise a total of nine modules. The Master’s programme requires 80 semester hours. Classes are conducted in German and English.
Module 1: Basic cultural and social science concepts in performance art
Module 1 deals with the history and theory of performance as well as related terminology and concepts. This includes basic knowledge of theories in cultural and social sciences that are of relevance to performance, and of the history of cultural performances, together with an in-depth familiarisation with key terms applied in performance art.
Module 2: History, theory and aesthetics of performance art
Module 2 centres on the history and theory of performance art in all areas of theatre and dance history, in different forms of contemporary dance and theatre, and in popular performances. It discusses the various contemporary manifestations of performance arts: in popular culture and in children’s and youth theatre and dance. It provides a diversified spectrum of basic theoretical and historical knowledge, thus letting students acquire skills that find their practical application in the analysis of the production, staging and reception of performances.
Module 3: Dramaturgy, media and aesthetics
Module 3 provides theoretical knowledge of various performance compositions, and performing media as well as an understanding of how to develop concepts and dramaturgies as a basis for independent artistic practice. It aims to consolidate skills in respect to aesthetic judgement and professional critique of performance activities. The students thus learn to deliberate on, differentiate and explain dramaturgical concepts, and accordingly to apply performance techniques to translate artistic intentions.
Module 4: Body, movement and stage
In Module 4 students become acquainted with a selection of practical dance and movement techniques that they can use in their performance projects. Besides gaining dancing skills, the focus is also on training the body and voice as a means of theatrical expression. Students will become proficient in the areas of voice training, language and body work with the aim of applying these skills in a targeted manner in their own performance work.
Module 5: Methods of dance composition
Module 5 expands students’ choreographic and theatrical skills as they deepen their understanding of improvisational and compositional techniques in choreography and directing. Students learn to explore the body and movement in depth, and to transform their knowledge into choreographic methods and theatrical concepts. The module aims to enable students to develop choreographies on their own, while at the same time bringing them to analyse and reflect on choreographic and theatrical concepts.
Module 6: Concepts and methods of theatre, dance and movement pedagogy
Module 6 deals with historical and contemporary concepts and models of theatre, dance and physical education pedagogy. It extends the understanding of artistic work with non-professional performers. The communication of aesthetic, social, cultural and political dimensions of theatre, dance and movement pedagogical work are developed and discussed.
Module 7: Didactics of performance art
Module 7 concentrates on performance art in institutions such as schools, non-academic cultural and educational centres, and non-institutional contexts. Students develop skills and abilities that enable them to manage performance processes and projects. The module deals with various production frameworks and conditions, for instance in respect to occasions and venues for performance, directorship and ensemble work. The goal is to gain an understanding of the strategies for optimally leveraging production circumstances and guiding processes involving group dynamics.
Module 8: Cultural management
Module 8 develops students’ project organisation and public relations skills. Students will learn how to develop concepts for projects, how to apply for funding, and how to execute their artistic vision. The module also delivers insights into cultural policy and knowledge of institutions. Students will be introduced to the principles of public relations and working with the press and acquire competencies in managing grants and subsidies within the context of local, regional, national and European culture and funding policies.
Module 9: Performance project
The aim of Module 9 is to develop and perform an artistic piece of work, with guidance provided, to evaluate it and also to critique the projects of the other course participants. In this module students are assisted in bringing together the skills acquired in Modules 1-8 and applying them to their own artistic work. The performance projects form the core of the practical and theoretical training. They are presented to an audience and publicly discussed.