Interview Process - BA Theatre Practice courses | The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama

Interview Process - BA Theatre Practice courses

If you are selected for an interview for a place on one of the specialist BA (Hons) Theatre Practice courses (Costume ConstructionDesign for the StageProduction LightingProp MakingScenic ArtScenic ConstructionStage ManagementTechnical and Production ManagementTheatre Lighting Design, and Theatre Sound), we will email you with an invitation for you to select the most appropriate interview location, date and method.

We encourage applicants to attend an interview at our campus in London if possible, as this gives you the best opportunity to see the School and its facilities, and to meet a wider range of staff and students. However, whether your interview is held at Central, at one of our UK regional or international sessions, or takes the form of a ‘distance interview’, we will seek to gain the same degree of information about you and give you the opportunity to gain the same degree of information about us.

We ask you to submit a digital portfolio (or folder) containing examples of your work that you feel demonstrates why you are suitable for the course. These do not all have to be linked directly to your chosen specialism. Further suggestions about portfolio content are provided below.


At the start of your visit, we will introduce the degree and the individual courses, as well as outline its structure and assessments. Following this, we will conduct a short group exercise that acts both as an ice-breaker and to give a flavour of how the specialist areas work together on the degree programme. This exercise will use your images (see below) as a starting point. Following this there will be a tour of the campus and individual interviews with a specialist tutor. A small reception with refreshments follows, allowing you to meet current students and senior staff together with people who can answer questions about, for example, finance, accommodation and student life. The afternoon will finish by 5.00pm.


For your interview, we would like you to bring three contrasting images taken from a variety of sources that you find interesting and that have a powerful effect on you. These may affect you emotionally, make you angry, make you cry, or laugh. The images should NOT be linked.

Find out as much as you can about the circumstances or context of each image. This might be political or social, or concern the person who created the image.

Consider what makes your chosen images powerful or effective. Consider the composition, colour, context, the light, subject and objects in the image. Think about what sounds there might be. Think about what has been included and what has been ‘cropped’ or left to the imagination.


During your individual interview we will discuss the items included in your portfolio and the specialist course for which you have applied. If you wish to be considered for more than one specialist course within the BA (Hons) Theatre Practice degree, this can be accommodated on the day. We encourage you to read up on any of the other BA (Hons) Theatre Practice specialist courses you may be considering prior to the day and to let us know upon arrival.

In addition to discussing items in your portfolio, interview questions will include asking you about:

  • What excites and interests you about working in the performing arts and why;
  • A show or performance you have experienced (whether live, streamed or recorded);
  • What it is that attracts you to the specific course;
  • What experiences you have had that will help you when undertaking the course (please note, such experiences do not always need to be theatre related).

Throughout the interview we will be looking for your potential to:

  • Be a committed and enquiring practitioner within the creative industries;
  • Reflect on and discuss your experiences and views;
  • Develop the knowledge and understanding to succeed in your chosen area;
  • Develop creatively, personally and intellectually;
  • Communicate ideas and collaborate effectively within a group or team;
  • Manage your own work and development.


A portfolio is a visual demonstration of some of your best work from school or college, your hobby or work place. This should not contain everything you have ever done but a focussed selection of relevant items. A portfolio will differ depending on the subject you’re applying for. A good portfolio will demonstrate a passion for theatre and live performance and why you are suitable for the course.

Examples of portfolio content might include some of the following, depending upon your particular specialist interest:

  • Photographs, drawings, sketchbooks, etc., which illustrate your process, visual awareness and practical ability;
  • Production notes, photographs of productions and/or production programmes that you have been involved in;
  • Reviews of productions or performances that have excited you (whether seen live or via streaming services) or other writing;
  • Paintings, examples of sewing, use of textiles, small artefacts or models, puppets, technical and/or working drawings;
  • Props lists, setting lists, prompt copies, cue sheets, schedules or any other paperwork that you have produced, or have been given, that has helped you to organise your tasks;
  • Other ‘off-the-wall’ items that you think somehow relate to your specialist interest.

We welcome images of large objects such as costumes or model boxes but we are unable to accommodate the actual large items on the day. We recommend fewer, strong items (with six as minimum) rather than overfilling a portfolio.

This digital portfolio should be emailed to us at least one week prior to your interview date. Please send that to listing your name, interview date and the words ‘Digital Portfolio’ in the subject line of the email. The portfolio should be submitted as PDF and/or PowerPoint files, no larger than 15MB in total. You can include links to relevant videos that demonstrate your work within your portfolio file(s). Please check that any such links work and can be easily accessed before you submit your portfolio. We will not be able to view any links that require a password.


If you are an applicant with a disability and feel that you may need support during the interview process, it is important that you contact our Disability and Dyslexia Support unit as early as possible. They can be reached at

Finally, you will be advised of the result of your interview via the UCAS system at a later date, which could be up to several weeks after the interview to allow us time to assess as many candidates as possible.


This will be conducted by Skype, telephone or by ‘live’ email exchange and will be based upon portfolio material you will have been asked to submit in advance. The interview will be conducted by the Admissions Tutor in liaison with a colleague who will have sight of your submitted materials.


Central hosts interviews in Bristol, Leicester, Manchester and Newcastle for the BA (Hons) Theatre Practice courses. These will take place in February each year. The UK regional interviews will follow the same outline as the London interviews, minus the tour and reception, though you will still have the opportunity to ask questions about finance, accommodation and student life.


Central hosts international interviews for the BA (Hons) Theatre Practice courses. These will take place on selected dates in New York, San Francisco, Singapore and Sydney. The international interviews will follow the same outline as the London interviews, minus the tour and reception, though you will still have the opportunity to ask questions about finance, accommodation and student life.