Theatre Arts & Performance Studies


Brown University’s Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies is home to three Graduate Programs

Graduate programs are unique in their equal commitment to creative practice and theory. MFA and PhD students collaborate on performance projects formally and informally throughout their graduate careers, on projects such as Writing is Live. MFA playwrights and directors attend courses on the Brown campus and join in critical theoretical discussions about theatre and performance on a regular basis.

The Doctoral Program

The Doctoral Program in Theatre Arts and Performance Studies stresses research and scholarship in theatre history, theory and criticism, and performance studies. Faculty members encourage rigorous and creative thought that engage performance modes and methodologies from the humanities and social sciences. Faculty and graduate student research includes work on theatre, performance in everyday life, festival, film, dance, new media and animation. As a top-ranking program in Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, our doctoral students have a 100 percent placement rate in postdoctoral and/or faculty positions.


The application deadline for the Doctoral Program in Theatre Arts and Performance Studies is January 4.

Learn More About the Doctoral Program

MFA in Playwriting

Brown's MFA in Playwriting is a three-year funded program. This program is a place to study what writing for theater has been, while honing a creative practice that also feeds voraciously on the nontheatrical: all kinds of literature, art, rebellion, and thought. Above all it is a place—and time—to write like you've never written before.


The application deadline for the MFA Playwriting Program is January 3, 2024.

Learn More About the MFA in Playwriting

MFA Program in Acting and Directing

Committed to creating whole artists, the MFA Program in Acting and Directing, housed at Trinity Repertory Company in downtown Providence, offers actors and directors interdisciplinary artistic training. Graduates of the program continue to earn their way onto well-known stages, into avant-garde collaborations and film. 


The Brown Trinity MFA Programs are not accepting applications for the 2024-25 academic year. Please check back for updates.

Learn More About the MFA Program in Acting and Directing

Student Handbooks

Please consult our undergraduate, doctoral, and MFA handbooks for detailed information about our programs. Handbooks are updated as things change. Please download the most recent version for the most accurate information.

These handbooks are addressed to current and prospective students to be used as a planning guide and reference resource throughout a student’s academic career. 

Pertinent University web resources should be regarded as the primary references for degree requirements and options.