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MA Puppetry Design and Construction

  • Award:

    MA Puppetry Design and Construction

  • 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:

    RW07 – UCAS Conservatoires


Discover all aspects of puppetry design and creation in this course that offers a significant, hands-on production role alongside workshops and other specialist tuition.

Course overview

One of only two master’s degrees on the subject in the UK, this course covers all aspects of puppetry design, including digital design and fabrication, and construction ranging from simple to complex mechanics. You’ll also explore puppeteering and a variety of different performance approaches.

Every year, we commission a significant design production that will form a core part of your training. You’ll take on a significant role in that production alongside school workshops and other specialist tuition in traditional puppet making techniques, sculpting, mould making, carving, weaving and state of the art contemporary techniques which includes using 3D printers, CNC machines and laser cutters.

Working with our core staff of experienced industry professionals, you’ll develop your construction skills and identify, and expand upon, your areas of particular interest as you progress through your study. 

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

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 and making 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 design puppets for a self-directed performance, or work as a puppet designer/maker on a College or external production.

  • You’ll also have the opportunity to secure placements with some of the practitioners and companies such as Max Humphries, Nick Barnes and Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru. Our production and design department has offered 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, 3D printers, 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

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