Derby Theatre - Our organisation - University of Derby

Derby Theatre

Your own theatre to work in

Previously Derby Playhouse, Derby Theatre is now owned and run by the University of Derby. With the support of Arts Council England, the University has developed a three year Pilot Programme for Derby Theatre to establish a new and entirely unique operating model as a “Learning Theatre”.

The vision for the Learning Theatre is to create a highly successful, artistically recognised, regional producing theatre that combines, and places equal value on, the University’s educational mission, professional theatre, the need to nurture and develop the next generation of theatre-makers, and a commitment to a city-wide community education programme.


Theatre degrees at Derby

Our Theatre Arts courses are delivered in the studio theatre spaces here at the Derby Theatre, and offer highly practical and broad-based course that covers all aspects of theatre work including performing, directing, playwrighting, technical and production opportunities in community based venues and on our main stage performance space.

Single honours or joint honours?

Our (BA) Single Honours degree course is a vibrant and exciting programme taught by practising professional artists with expertise in their own specialist fields.

We'll encourage you to consider theatre from many perspectives and we'll offer you the opportunity to explore different elements of working practice related to Theatre Arts.

During the course you will encounter a range of practices including acting, directing, applied drama, writing for performance, technical theatre and promotional/administration work in theatre production. 

Joint Honours Theatre Studies will offer you the opportunity to study at the Derby Theatre alongside Single Honours students here at the Derby Theatre, plus being able to combine studying theatre alongside another chosen subject of your choice: other subjects will be delivered at our main campus' either Markeaton Street or Kedleston Road.

Performance opportunities

You will also take part in public performances in the main house of Derby Theatre, in studio based productions and at off-site specialist community environments and schools (if you choose the Applied Drama modules). Public performance is an integral part of this course and there is also the opportunity to be involved in extra-curricular activity at the Theatre. 

We work regularly with other partners, such as Buxton Opera House (with whom we regularly co-produce performances such as the Shakespeare in the Dome project) and participate in festivals (such as Edinburgh Fringe Festival, National Student Festivals and the Buxton Fringe Festival).

Derby Theatre tour

Derby Theatre (formally Derby Playhouse) is a working theatre where University of Derby Theatre Arts students are based. To find out more visit