A stage designer designs sets and scenes for performances and events. Setting up the set for a major theater production requires knowledge of art, science, and design. There is a high demand for stage designers in the world of theater.

Today’s stage designers hold advanced degrees in theater arts and must have an understanding of art as well as technology and lighting to create realistic stage designs.

Stage design masters can teach you, even more, tricks and tips to use to create winning sets. This can open up opportunities with larger theater groups or even full-time employment in this field. Here is a list of 10 colleges (in no particular order of rank) for masters in set design.

1. Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (AMU)

Degree – Master in Stage Design
Duration – 2 years

The focus of the program is the design process of dramatic space for theatre, opera, and ballet. This program offers both traditional and non-traditional designs for film and television as well as site-specific designs. The aim is to guide students in the creative process of mastering stage design as an authorial component of theatre-making and also master the technical and technological requirements of designing the stage space. 

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Academy of Performing Arts in Prague_©studyinprague.cz

2. Rome University of Fine Arts (RUFA)

Degree – Master of Arts in Set Design
Duration – 2 years

Throughout the entire course of study, students will be supported by a well-structured, constantly updated cycle of joint efforts, internships, and work placements with leading proponents in the world of Italian set design.

The MA Degree Program in Set Design is an opportunity for students with an artistic and creative personality, in search of a professional environment, to express their vision and design talent, and to receive highly specialized training.

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Set Design in Rome University of Fine Arts_©www.unirufa.it

3. Idea Barcelona, Spain

Degree – Master stylist for fashion, media, and performing arts
Duration – 1 year

With this master’s degree, students can take on projects where clothing becomes the axis for creating visual impact, communicating the brand’s personality or character. After completing the program, students will be able to design looks for various publishing media, showrooms, fashion events, and retail outlets.

4. University of Arts in Poznan

Degree – Master of Arts (MA) in Stage Design 

The program teaches students about how to create scenery, backgrounds, and sets for a variety of different performances and presentations. This course covers everything from construction to color theory, as well as lighting and backdrops. 

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University of Arts in Poznan_©uap.edu.pl

5. University of Cincinnati , USA

Degree – Master of Fine Arts in Stage Design (MFA)
Duration – 3 years 

The university offers students unparalleled opportunities to perform, learn and live in a thriving next-generation city known for its intense interest in the performing and media arts. Students also benefit from the fact that Cincinnati frequently hosts major media and performing arts events and is home to the newly renovated Music Hall, one of the nation’s most beautiful and revered performance centers.

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University of Cincinnati_©ccm.cu.edu

6. Trinity College Dublin  

Degree – Stage Design (MFA)
Duration – 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time

The Stage Design program is purposely designed to allow students to either specialize in one area of stage design or to combine disciplines as desired.

Full-time and part-time students will have to take three concurrent modules in the first two terms. The final module will be taught in the third term and subsequent summer months or the second year of the course. 

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Stage Design at Trinity College in Dublin_ ©www.thelier.ie

7. ELISAVA University in Spain

Degree – Master’s in Set Design for Theatre, Film, and TV
Duration – 1 year

The aim is to acquire the necessary knowledge to be part of a theatrical design team or to be part of the artistic department of an audio-visual project preparing them to be designers of a set. The curriculum explores the discipline from the artistic and conceptual side in parallel to present and know the techniques and technologies associated with the scenographic creation.

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Stage Design at ELISAVA University _©www.elisava.net

8. The University of Melbourne

Degree – Master of Production Design
Duration – 2 years full time

The Master of Production Design offers students the skills, knowledge, and hands-on experience necessary to successfully take on design roles for either stage or screen. This structured coursework program provides an enriched and comprehensive pathway into the profession encompassing formal classes, workshops, and studio-based learning where students will explore the role of production design for stage or screen. 

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University of Melbourne_©www.educations.com

9. Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, USA

 Degree – Master of Fine Arts in Stage Design program (MFA)
Duration – 3 years

The program prepares a select group of scenery, costume, and lighting designers for professional careers in the American Theatre, international theater, and related design fields. The program of study emphasizes intensive collaboration between designers and directors, rigorous analysis of texts, thorough research, and a fervent effort to nurture unique artistic voices. 

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MFA in Stage Design_©stagedesign.northwestern.edu

10. The Technical University of Berlin, Germany

 Degree – Stage Design and Scenography, M.A.
Duration – 2 years

The master’s program aims to equip students with the practical knowledge and skills for a career in the areas of stage design and scenography while strengthening their distinct artistic and creative development. The dual nature of the program brings together two approaches regarding the dramaturgical design of space. 

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The Technical University of Berlin_©www.tu.berlin

References:

  1. UCONN University of Connecticut . MFA Scenic Design. [online]. Available at: https://drama.uconn.edu/programs/design-tech/mfa-scenic-design/ [Accessed date: 16/03/2022].
  2. The Technical University of Berlin, Germany [online]. Available at: https://www.tu.berlin/en/studying/study-programs/all-programs-offered/study-course/stage-design-and-scenography-m-a/ [Accessed date: 17/03/2022].
  3. The University of Melbourne [online]. Available at: https://study.unimelb.edu.au/find/studyareas/theatre/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIma_elJPS9gIV0MKWCh2EwAZcEAAYAiAAEgLkiPD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds/ [Accessed date: 16/03/2022].
  4. Trinity College Dublin [online]. Available at: https://www.tcd.ie/courses/postgraduate/courses/stage-design-mfa/ [Accessed date: 15/03/2022].
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She is an Architect and an artist who loves to paint and watch movies a lot!!! A nature enthusiast person loving Nature and believes that conservation is a state of harmony between men and land. She likes to learn new art forms in her spare time.

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