Find out more about BA Video Design for Live Performance in this video
BA (Hons) Video Design for Live Performance
Three years full-time
This is a dynamic and innovative new programme for students interested in the fast-changing and exciting world of digital video design and production. It has been shaped by and upholds the practical, hands-on ethos of Guildhall School’s Technical Theatre Department.
Watch our videos
Our students in action at Glastonbury and Ministry of Sound!
About the course
The programme will provide you with specialist training in the rapidly-expanding field of projection and video-based arts forms. It uses state-of-the-art equipment and facilities in line with the latest industry developments. The teaching is practical and project-based, and you will work on a range of projects with professional designers, programmers and animators, such as gallery installations, projection work for Guildhall productions and VJing at festivals and club nights.
The programme shares some of the professional theatre skills and theory modules of the BA in Technical Theatre Arts, but these are complemented with a more specialised series of modules related to video design and content creation, technical management, system design and live operation / programming. Throughout the programme you will be able to attend cross-year seminars and lectures given by visiting guest artists.
This programme provides students with a unique range of opportunities to practise and apply the skills they have acquired. Such opportunities include contributing to Guildhall School’s programme of acclaimed productions, taking part in festivals and arts commissions around the country, and commercial activity, for example with the Barbican Centre.
Festivals & Arts Commissions
Recently the department has presented work at:
- Guildhall Yard for the Shakespeare 400 Festival and the 800-year anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta – over 16,000 people attended three performances.
- The British Museum, where we presented a large-format projection-mapping installation on the building’s entrance as part of the ‘Day of the Dead’ celebrations.
- Cambridge Science Festival, where we produced a real- time visualisation of EEG data captured by Cambridge University Neuroscience department.
- The opening of the multimillion pound Arts Centre Pontio in Bangor, Wales where a large format multimedia performance took place involving video projection and aerial acrobats.
We have also established links into a range of festivals and events, including:
- Glastonbury Festival, the world’s largest multi-arts and popular music festival. Since 2014, staff and students have provided video design for one of the festival venues. Watch our students test the designs on a model box here.
- Troyfest and Trufest, two summer festivals where students have presented a large-scale architectural video projection on to Baskerville Hall manor house
- Lux Festival, an annual international ‘light art’ festival in Helsinki where Guildhall School staff and students have presented work.
Some other recent work carried out by the Technical Theatre Department includes:
- The Pump House Gallery, Battersea Park
- Walthamstow Garden Party – video mapping on The William Morris Gallery
- Gravity Fields Festival
- Sadlers Wells (and UK tour) Jasmin Vardimon Company
- Inside Out Festival
- BIPAF – South Korea
- Barbican Weekender – UK
- BeatBreakr at Ministry of Sound
- Oxford Christmas Lights Festival
- The Tower of London (large-format projection mapping project)
Projection mapping techniques are used by commercial brands in advertising, product launches, VIP events, AGMs and at parties. Guildhall School’s close working relationship with professional organisations, for example the Barbican Centre, allows us to collaborate in providing high-quality services for companies holding events and conferences. Through these opportunities students will experience working in a variety of commercial settings, from small to large-scale projects.
As a student on this programme you will gain invaluable skills, knowledge and experience from working on a range of these real-world projects. It is a hands-on opportunity to test and develop the skills you will acquire in the classroom and studios.
The core focus in Year 1 is on familiarisation with the software and hardware, while nurturing your design skills and building confidence in a professional setting. There is a range of opportunities to make the most of our extensive resources as you learn your trade, becoming directly involved in a supportive role as a member of the crew.
In Year 2 you will continue to take a series of classes to help develop your creative skills and hardware competency. But there is also a switch in emphasis regarding your role on practical projects. You will gain more responsibility as you progress, moving from a supportive ‘crew’ member to a more distinct role within the team. You will have responsibility for things such as system checks and maintenance and content production (working with third-year designers or visiting professionals). You will also have more of a say in the selection of equipment and how projects are planned.
In Year 3 you will take a final series of classes to refine your video design skillset. You will have opportunities to make content and design materials that may then be used on real-world projects. You will lead a team of second and first-year students who help you to realise your artistic and technical objectives, while still receiving guidance and support from your tutors and visiting professionals.
Alongside your production work you will also complete a portfolio, which will be invaluable when seeking employment at the end of your studies. And you will undertake a self-directed graduation project that will allow you to focus on a chosen area of specialism.
As well as equipping you with the skills and knowledge to enter the video, theatre and entertainment industries, the programme provides you with a range of transferable skills which are valuable to any employer. These include:
- Team working
- Verbal and written communication skills
- Problem solving
- Time management
- Cash handling
- Practical application of IT
- Research skills
- People management
A Guildhall School graduate may expect to pursue a career as a:
- Video designer
- Video engineer/technician
- Video operator/programmer
- 3D designer
Our graduates have an excellent track record of achieving employment at industry-leading organisations. Former students work in roles at 59 Productions, D3 Technologies and XL Video, to name a few, as well as several successful West End shows. The development of this specialised programme is expected to enhance further our relationship with these employers.
Find out more & Apply
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Find out more about studying Video Projection Mapping at the School by watching this video: