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MA Contemporary Performative Arts

This international master's programme is for those who are practising artists with an interest in theatrical production in interdisciplinary artistic situations. The programme’s focus examines context and the artist's interaction with the surrounding community. You apply for the programme with an investigative project that then runs through the entire programme. You can examine new perspectives and challenge your practices through encounters with your fellow students, your supervisor and guest teachers from the arts as well as experts from other fields. You study alongside students from the master programmes in acting and music drama in several courses. The programme prepares students for postgraduate studies.

This programme is taught in English.

Foto: Johan WingborgStudents in the master programme in Contemporary Performative Arts 2016-2018, from the left: Adriana Essén, Anna Thunström, Annika Britt Lewis and Georgios Giokotos. Not in picture: Josefine Chiacchiero, Camilla Ekelöf and Maria Labraki. Photo: Johan Wingborg

Physical Performance

The focus in physical performance lies in the actor's physical narrative. Dramatic content is expressed through the behaviour and actions of the body. This is a highly visual form of dramatic art which seldom adheres to a dramatically linear sequence of events. Works are often ”devised” rather than growing out of a predetermined text and they arise most often from cross-border artistic impulses. They often involve shifts between theatre, dance, movement art, performance, installation, music and visual art.

shifts between theatre, dance, movement art, performance, installation, music and visual art.Performances often challenge traditional theatre venues and actor/audience relationships. This type of dramatic art is to be found within all forms of physical theatre, dance theatre, performance, post-dramatic theatre, mime, commedia dell'arte, ”devised theatre”, and art specific to a particular place.

Dance for Screen

This field can be defined as choreography for moving pictures – dance for the camera – and it is internationally speaking its own specific genre with a long and broad tradition. Dance for screen often involves innovative productions in which choreography is not first and foremost registered by a camera but is rather re-created to make a synthesis of several languages via dance, sound and visual images. Dance and film benefit from each other through their many similarities while building totally separate vocabularies.
This genre provides an opportunity to supply the broader public with completely new knowledge about the many aspects of dance, using quite new perspectives – slow motion, a bird's-eye view, on the seashore or in the centre of a city. The narrative is abstract and the possibilities infinite.

new perspectives – slow motion, a bird's-eye view, on the seashore or in the centre of a city”Dance for screen provides dancers and choreographers with a completely new stage to explore and a new audience to meet. Film-makers find a new field within which to operate, linked to movement, where the film's narrative is based more on visual factors and less on dialogue and lines.
Dance for screen is extremely visual and usually non-verbal, with great potential for reaching beyond language barriers and having an international impact.

Performative Sound Art

Performative sound art is an expression within the field of sound art in which performative interpretation is integrated with local sounds and where staging in public space is composed in dialogue with the sounding city spatiality, an exploration of the sounds that already exist in a particular place.
By means of physically movable sound sources and an interpretation created through movement, shifts occur in the listener's perception resulting in a new focus on public space with its soundscape and accents.
a new focus on public space with its soundscape and accents”The values of various artifacts are reinforced when they are used as sound sources and sound objects, which demonstrates the fact that different parallel contexts and artistic shifts can be in motion at the same time and on one and the same occasion.
A performative dramatic happening is thus created in which the sound aspect of the staging is central, highlighted by the interpretation, all in concurrence with the space itself and the visual elements.

Public Space and Venues
Other Than the Traditional Stages

The social fabric of society is manifested in public space. It is a theatrical stage on which the political, social and economic power structures cooperate with each other.
By working with social processes as a parameter and method, awareness increases of the difficulties and possibilities encompassed by public space, a problematisation that is the precondition for creating a dynamic stage, like an open workshop, in this space. This raises the question of the kind of complications, negociations and problem-solving that can arise while working in public space.
Stagings related specifically to particular places challenge the artist to explore and reflect on the multiplicity of codes and meanings borne by such a space. The artist must relate to that which is explicit and that which is not explicit, and also to who may put the question about who owns the right of interpretation regarding this particular space.
By moving one's practice to a new, often charged context, one’s role as an artist and the role of one's art are questioned and clarified.
How can art contribute to the transformation of social and cultural infrastructures by means of work in public space?

How can art contribute to the transformation of social and cultural infrastructures by means of work in public space?In Utopian democratic public space, there are no owners nor any person with a greater right of decision than anyone else.
Faced with working in this environment, which becomes like a new and unknown space, without walls to protect one, a space filled with signals and assertions, the artist is compelled to be open, tolerant, empathetic and decisive.

National and International Entrepreneurship
and Communication

As an artist, one needs specific knowledge about the market and communication, which differ from the usual forms of entrepreneurship.
The Programme Contemporary Performative Arts provides the student with specific knowledge about art's methods of communication.
The issue is to operate nationally and internationally, creating insights about the differences between various national and international contexts, from the starting-point of one's own artistic enterprise and trademark. The Programme will offer students tried and tested, hands-on methods and tools for meeting the demands made by the market on communication with the general public and their contexts.


Activities at the Academy of Music and Drama are permeated by an international perspective. The forms of artistic expression included in our education are international. This makes it extra important for us to create opportunities for our students to come into contact with international environments right from the beginning of their education.
Student and teacher exchanges are made possible thanks to our participation in international networks, as are also participation in international artistic projects and research projects.
As part of this Programme, students are expected to travel to different countries within the European Union in order to participate in workshops and courses at festivals and universities.

students are expected to travel to different countries within the European Union”Teachers from abroad will be visiting Göteborg and our teachers will be travelling to various seats of learning in Europe, more than ever consolidating the concept of an international network for teachers as well as students.


- The Programme will be synchronised with the Master's Programme in Acting, with shared courses and seminars.

Collaboration with Nahda Arts School for Social Theater in Cairo

The masters' students in acting and CPA were in Cairo during one week in September 2017 to partcipate in a series of workshops with the Nahda Arts School for Social Theater (NAS). This was the second time that HSM and Nahda collaborated through student exchange, as a part of the course "Cultural exchange with acting as language” with the goal to – among other things – identify different ways to create performative art in a non-Swedish context, and discover different ways of communicating through art without words. The workshops are led by Mustafa Wafi, Tinna Ingelstam (Nahda) and Henrik Andersson from the Academy of Music and Drama. Thanks to support from The Swedish Institute and scholarships from the Mary von Sydow född Wijks donationsfond.

Page Manager: Tobias Egle|Last update: 10/27/2017

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