Skip to main content

MA Design for Performance

  • Award:

    MA Design for Performance

  • Awarding body:

    University of South Wales 

  • Location of study:

    Cardiff (RWCMD, Llanishen Studios and Old Library)

  • Start date:

    21 September 2025

  • Duration:

    Two years full time

  • Course code:

    712F – UCAS Conservatoires


Enhance your expertise with our course that offers specialist tuition and opportunities to design performance environments, installations, characters and sets for a series of live public performances and immersive experiences.

Course overview

Bring your creative designs to life with our course that explores traditional design approaches for characters and sets across theatre, events, installation, exhibition, film and TV.

You’ll delve into digital and physical modelling, character drawing and storyboard creation, guided by expert tutors operating at the top of their field.

In our safe and immersive learning environment, you will have the opportunity to gain all the practical and creative skills you’ll need to kickstart your career in the industry.

Collaboration is at the heart of this course. In your RWCMD placements or on those with our industry partners, you’ll learn about different creative disciplines and get a real feel for what it’s like to be a member of a production support team – all in readiness for life after graduation.

The course ends with a public exhibition of your cohort’s work in Cardiff and then for four days on London’s South Bank, which includes an industry night for an invited audience of potential employers.

Our Design for Performance graduates have consistently been successful Linbury Prize finalists and have gone on to roles as early career designers in leading companies across the UK

Why study this course?

  • In this course with hands-on training at its core, you’ll develop and apply your existing knowledge and skills to an advanced specialist field of study at a professional level.

  • You’ll gain, through the breadth of projects and classwork, a comprehensive understanding of the theoretical and practical principles of designing for theatre, film and TV – making you highly desirable to employers.

  • Our full-time staff and the visiting lecturers are all practitioners still working in industry, with both national and international profiles. They bring the most current best practices to your training.

  • As part of our in-house theatre company, you can gain real-world experience throughout the course and get a deep understanding of what working in a live performance environment is really like. Depending on your specialism, you’ll have the chance to create physical or digital character models, character drawings/designs or storyboards for a College or external production. 

  • You’ll also have the opportunity to secure placements with some of the leading production companies, such as Bad Wolf, BBC Wales and WNO. Our production and design department also offers placements with leading theatre and opera companies across the UK. 

  • We’re leading the way in state-of-the-art theatre technology, and you’ll have access to all of our facilities, such as our design studio spaces, prop workshops/paint shop, designated CAD studio, editing suites and large-scale construction and scenic art workshops. 

  • The small cohort size and high level of staff support means that you’re learning in a nurturing and safe working environment.

  • Masterclass presentations run throughout the course, delivered by leading international practitioners. Designed to complement individual specialist study needs, these classes allow you to develop a comprehensive appreciation of excellence, multidisciplinary practice and performance collaboration. 

  • You’ll take part in scheduled visits to local theatre companies, offering additional insight into the industry at work. When major productions visit Cardiff, we’ll try to arrange visits and organise a tour or talk for your cohort.

Other course information

Scenic construction work is thriving alongside the rise of Film and TV production in Wales. We’re delighted to support the College to train the next generation of practitioners to take on new jobs in the industry.
Hannah RaybouldOperations Manager for Bad Wolf


Balance showcases the work of 40 graduating designers and stage management students, featuring designs created across the last two years for productions, projects and films made at the College. 

Sign up to receive our latest updates

An email asking you to confirm your address will be sent. Please check your spam / junk folder if the email doesn’t arrive within a few minutes.

The College takes the protection of all personal information seriously and is fully committed to the protection of the rights and freedoms of all individuals. We will process your data according to our privacy statement, which you can read at

Year of entry:

What’s on

Latest news