Community Theatre Arts Management

The details
East 15 Acting School
Southend Campus
Full Year
Undergraduate: Level 5
Thursday 03 October 2019
Friday 26 June 2020
04 October 2018


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA W496 Acting and Community Theatre

Module description

In this module students will examine a range of community theatre contexts of arts management. Students will explore the structure and management of small-scale community and voluntary sector arts organisations, and community and education departments within large organisations. The module includes preparation for work placements assessed in the final year. By the end of the module students will be prepared to learn and begin to apply arts administration skills in a professional company context.

Aspects of event management and production management will be explored. This may include such aspects as marketing, databases, budgets, liaison with agencies, licensing, risk assessment, audience management and other aspects of Health and Safety, along with scheduling and logistics.

Module aims

The aims of the module are:
To introduce students to management of the voluntary and community arts sectors.
To explore a range of arts organisational roles and processes.
To reflect on the role of organisations in community theatre provision.
To develop an understanding of the management of arts organisations in preparation for the placement with a company.
To experince production management through the development and delivery of an event.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module:
Students will be able to demonstrate ability to:
Understand the processes of a range of arts organisations
Understand the roles and responsibilities in production management
Critically analyses arts organisations' business and marketing practices
Exercise relevant practical and administrative skills

Module information

The structure and purpose of organisations involved in community theatre: community, voluntary, public and relevant departments under the umbrella of larger organisations.

Case studies in organisational structure of small to medium-sized arts organisations and departments:
Management structures, organisational roles, project roles
Involvement of administrative support through the life of a project
Relationship of artistic and production goals of a project
Placement of a company through its philosophy and organisational style
Databases, budgets and the use of Excel
Cultural policy development, its underlying assumptions and its influence on arts organisations
How projects are funded
Case studies of management in community arts organisations

Basic arts administration skills
CV preparation and presentation, interview and self-presentation skills applicable to:
An independent, freelance artist
A small-scale performing arts organisation
Community/Education departments within large organisations
In preparation for entry to their final professional preparation year, students will learn how to explore avenues to approaching companies who employ performers in the community theatre sector and recognise their transferable skills from non-theatrical employment.

Students will meet guest lecturers from organisations in the community theatre sector, initiating the establishment of networks with arts practitioners in Southend, London and the South East England region. Students will undertake research to identify opportunities for their final work placements and investigate organisations:
Working practices
Level of activity in the community sector
Culture and management

Students may undertake initial observation visits to potential work placement providers

Event management will be explored in the context of the annual street theatre event. Students will undertake production roles, focusing on:
Liaison with agencies an licensing
Marketing and promotion
Liaison and engagement of the community
Risk assessment, audience management and other aspects of Health and Safety
Scheduling and logistics
The definition and functions of key role in production management

They will consider issues of scale, visibility, sightlines, audibility and accessibility in outdoor performance and explore approaches to capturing and sustaining the audiences' attention outdoors. Students will learn how to encourage and manage audience participation through the design of outdoor performance.

Learning and teaching methods

lectures, seminars, independent study, practical project groups.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework   Company Appraisal    30% 
Coursework   Event Management Portfolio    40% 
Practical   Information Management Exercise    30% 
Practical   Video Documentary     

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Ms Ainslie Masterton, email: amast@essex.ac.uk.
Ainslie Masterton, Guest Lecturers, Work Placement Providers
For further information email amast


Travel costs for UK - based unpaid, approved work placements and live projects which are an integral part of a module may be covered by your department. (NB this will usually exclude field trips and site visits). Please check with your module supervisor to ensure that the activity is eligible.

External examiner

Dr Kerrie Vanessa Schaefer
The University of Exeter
Senior Lecturer
Available via Moodle
No lecture recording information available for this module.


Further information
East 15 Acting School

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