BA (Hons) Theatre & Screen: Theatre Design

Places available 2016/17

This course has places available. View the Apply section on this page for more details. For a full list of UAL courses open for 2016/17 entry, including others available at Wimbledon College of Arts, visit the Places available page.

Theatre Design at Wimbledon College of Arts equips students with both the knowledge and professional skills required in theatre design, covering both set and costume design, as well as realisation for performed events.


Course Leader

Lucy Algar

Course Location

Wimbledon College of Art, Merton Hall Road


Study LevelUndergraduate
Study ModeFull time
Course Length3 years
Home/EU Fee

£9,000 per year (2016/17)

Please note that fees for the 2nd and any subsequent years is subject to inflationary increase.  

International Fee

£17,230 per year (2016/17). 

International fees are subject to an inflationary increase as students progress through their course. 

Start DateSeptember 2016
Autumn Term DatesMonday 26 September - Friday 9 December 2016
Spring Term DatesMonday 9 January - Friday 17 March 2017
Summer Term DatesTuesday 18 April - Friday 23 June 2017
Application Route

Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS)

Application DeadlineOpen for UK, EU and international applicants for 2016/17 entry. Applications for 2017/18 entry will open in Autumn 2016.
UCAS CodeW462
University CodeU65

Content and Structure

Content: what students can expect

  • To focus on many different aspects of theatre design practice, such as analysis and interpretation of text, perception of character, dramatic space, the designer’s role and relationship within the creative team as well as working with performers
  • Visiting lecturers who are practicing designers and directors within their specialisms
  • An on-going contextual studies programme that builds our students’ knowledge and helps develop their critical understanding of the changing culture of theatre, film and the visual arts
  • On-going collaborative projects with both drama and dance programmes in other universities

Students will be be guided through a broad range of skills and technical areas, including:

  • Computer-aided design
  • Costume cutting and construction
  • Costume drawing
  • Fabric dyeing
  • Lighting
  • Metal and wood workshop
  • Recorded digital arts for live performance
  • Scaled precision model-making
  • Sound
  • Story boarding for live performance
  • Technical drafting


Year One

  • Unit 1: Introduction to study in Higher Education
  • Unit 2: Introduction to practice - Defining the subject
  • Unit 3: Critical and contextual studies
  • Unit 4: Establishing practice

Year Two

  • Unit 5: Understanding collaborative practice
  • Unit 6: Experimentation and exploring practice
  • Unit 7: Research in practice
  • Unit 8: Contextualising practice

Year Three

  • Unit 9: Theorising practice and practising theory
  • Unit 10: Towards independent practice

Work experience and opportunities

Students gain production experience on the course with our professional practitioners, as well as through specialist work placements with companies or individuals.

Our students also have the chance to collaborate with established and emerging choreographers and directors in areas such as design for dance and design for drama.

Students can also study abroad in their second year as part of the College’s Erasmus scheme.


Lucy Algar - Course Leader

Lucy Algar is a theatre and production designer whose work encompasses design and direction for performance within the areas of theatre and television, as well as site-specific installation artwork.

Lucy taught design (Costume Design, Scenography and Installation Art) at Royal Holloway, and was also guest lecturer on other courses including; MA Directing, MA Applied Theatre, Physical Theatre and Black and Asian Theatre.


  • Peter Farley - Designer
  • Michael Pavelka - Designer
  • Geraldine Pilgrim - Site-specific theatre maker

Visiting Staff

  • Gill Allen - Head of Production, East 15 Acting School
  • Dan Bird - Director
  • Tony Clark - Director
  • Jane Collins - Professor of Theatre and Performance
  • Marcel Dolman - Director and Designer
  • David Harris - Designer, technical drawing tutor and model maker
  • Pamela Howard - Designer
  • Rob Howell - Designer
  • Sophie Jump - Designer
  • James Perkins - Designer
  • Uri Roodner - Theatre Director
  • Vivian Sendall - Scene painter
  • Sjef Tilly - Designer


Our graduates progress into a range of roles within the field of theatre and performance after graduation, including designers and collaborators in television and film production, production managers and scenic artists.

Course alumni have been both finalists and winners of the Linbury Prize for stage design, progressing to being BAFTA and Olivier Award-winning designers with the National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company and the BBC.


  • Sarah Greenwood - four times Oscar nominated and BAFTA winning production designer for films including Atonement, Anna Karenina, Pride and Prejudice and Sherlock Holmes
  • Richard Hudson - Set designer for The Lion King
  • Ann Maskrey - Costume designer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland
  • Edward Thomas - BAFTA winning production designer who has worked on Dr Who and Torchwood

Entry Requirements

We select students based on the quality of their applications, looking primarily at their portfolio of work and personal statements.

Applicants will have, or are expected to achieve, either:

  • A Foundation Diploma in Art and Design
  • 1 GCE A Level
  • 3 GCSEs grade C or above


  • BTEC Extended Diploma or NVQ Level 3
  • 3 GCSEs grade C or above


  • University of the Arts London level 3 Pre-University Diploma and Extended Diploma in Art and Design
  • 4 GCSEs grade C or above


  • International Baccalaureate Diploma pass achieved at 28 points or above 
  • An equivalent level of performance in other internationally recognised national school leaving or university entrance qualifications


  • Other evidence of prior learning and experience via Accreditation of Prior (Experiential) Learning - AP(E)L and / or alternative qualifications assessed as offering the same level as the above requirements 

In exceptional circumstances, applicants may be considered if they present a portfolio of equivalent standard to a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design and have:

  • 2 GCE A Levels
  • 3 GCSEs grade C or above

Where conditional offers are made to GCE A Level applicants these will normally be at grade C or above.

English Language Requirements

All classes are conducted in English. If English isn't a students' first language they must provide evidence at enrolment of the following:

At interview and portfolio review

 We look for:

  • An interest, commitment and motivation for studying the subject
  • An understanding of the subject, including examples of contemporary and historical practice
  • An ability to communicate your ideas visually, verbally and in writing
  • Your portfolio to demonstrate a range of appropriate skills and technical abilities 
  • An ability to self-direct and evaluate your own work

Portfolio advice

Your portfolio should show the following:

  • A set model, storyboard sequence and costume drawings from a recent project
  • A good level of drawing abilities, including life drawing
  • Ability to work with form, colour, texture and space, either fictional or architectural
  • An ability to understand character in the context of a dramatic situation
  • An interest in contemporary and historical life
  • An interest in collaboration and making performances
  • Previous experience of theatre work
  • Sketchbooks and notebooks

Optional Theatre Design project

This project is optional, but can provide a good opportunity to demonstrate your interpretive skills and design ideas.

You should choose one from the following list:

  • 'Cabaret' by Kander and Ebb
  • 'The Tempest' by William Shakespeare
  • 'Turn of the Screw' by Benjamin Britten
  • 'Waiting for Godot' by Samuel Beckett

For your portfolio you should complete at least six designs based on your choice, together with supporting work such as costume reference material, character sketches and fabric swatches. You can also include ideas for staging if you wish. Please ensure you work from the play text rather than a video.

Home / EU applicants

All applicants for this course will be invited for interview.

Applicants will be seen by a team of Theatre and Screen tutors.

Interviews will take place between the following dates:

  • 1 - 5 February 2016
  • 22 - 26 February 2016

Applicants may be offered a place on an alternative BA Theatre and Screen course at Wimbledon.

This decision will be based on our assessment of an applicants' creative potential and interests.

International applicants

Interviews and portfolio reviews - applicants can be interviewed in a number of different ways: 

  • By phone
  • In their country, if your application was made though one of our official representatives 
  • At our international office based at Chelsea College of Arts


Home / EU applicants

You must apply through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), where you’ll need the following information:

  • University code - U65
  • UCAS course code - W462

International applicants

There are three ways international students can apply to an undergraduate course at Wimbledon College of Arts:

To apply through the College, you’ll need to download and complete our international undergraduate application form and send this, along with your portfolio and any supporting documents, to the address below.

Download International Undergraduate application form [PDF, 185 KB]

International Office
Chelsea College of Arts
16 John Islip Street

Deferred entry

This course will give consideration to deferred entry application from both Home / EU and International applicants.

Study Abroad applicants

Through the Study Abroad programme international students can apply to join an undergraduate course for a period of up to three terms. 

For information on how to apply visit the Study Abroad section

Enquire about this course

If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.

Make an enquiry