CAREER PROSPECTS THEATRE STUDIES

Graduates of the Theatre Studies Master’s programme are acquainted with the latest developments in the theory and practice of contemporary theatre and dance. They are able to contextualise these developments, reflect critically on them, and make this reflection productive for diverse theoretical, practical, educational, and critical ends.

Many of our international students use their acquired knowledge and skills to become a dramaturge, writer, artistic advisor, or organizer of performance events in their homeland, or to start up platforms for the exchange of artistic knowledge.

Since the workfield is multifaceted and comprises both larger and smaller companies as well as public and private initiatives, many alumni combine various jobs—for instance, dramaturge and writer or programmer and artistic advisor.

A rough inventory of our alumni’s careers indicates that about 20% of our students find a job immediately after graduation; about 50% find a job within a year; and about 75 % within 2 years.

Below you will find some examples of jobs which require an expertise in theatre studies.

  • Guido Jansen works as a teaching assistant at Utrecht University. After discovering his didactic qualities—both as an intern and professionally—within the context of the Spring Festival’s Academy sessions, he now works as an assistant to the academic staff of the Media and Culture department. He teaches in Bachelor’s seminars on theatre and dance theory and analysis, media analysis, and dramaturgy.
  • Aukje Verhoog is the Curator of Spring Academy, of the annual Spring Performing Arts Festival in Utrecht. Spring Academy is a vital part of this theatre, dance and performance festival, offering in-depth reflection on the present works along with workshops and seminars led by invited practitioners.
  • Ásgerður G. Gunnarsdóttir is the Co-Artistic Director of the Reykjavík Dance Festival(RDF) in Reykjavík, Iceland. She is one of the two curators of the festival. In her work, she combines her background as a dancer, choreographer, and teacher with her dance research on both the local and the international strands in Icelandic dance history.
  • Nienke Scholts works as a dramaturge. After a 5 year collaboration with visual theatre and installation maker Dries Verhoeven (2007-2012), she works in close collaboration with artist Emke Idema (STRANGER 2012, RULE 2014). As writer/editor/dramaturge, Nienke is part of the small team that runs the production house Het Veem Theater, where she stages connections between artistic work and audiences. She is also a lecturer at the department for Theatre Design at the Utrecht School for the Arts (HKU) and a member and cofounder of Platform-Scenography NL. She also writes and publishes irregularly inEtcetera, a Flemish magazine for performing arts. 

Alumni of the programme have gone on to work as:

  • theatre or dance dramaturge
  • theatre or dance critic
  • dramaturgy instructor
  • researcher
  • public officials for cultural affairs
  • employees at training centres for the arts
  • director of cultural programs on radio, television or internet platforms
  • curators, organisers and programmers of theatre or dance festivals
  • public relations or education employee with theatre or dance companies or performing arts houses

The Theatre Studies programme does not directly prepare students for PhD studies, but occasionally, a student begins a PhD project after finishing this programme. If you wish to pursue an academic career, you might be interested in our Master’s programme in Media and Performance Studies.

Students that graduated from this programme have found jobs at

Are you considering starting your own business? Now is a good time to prepare. Utrecht University can offer you a number of opportunities to explore entrepreneurship.

You could, for instance, take electives from Master's degree programmes that cover entrepreneurship in their curriculums:

The Utrecht Center for Entrepreneurship (CE) also organises Spring schools, Summer schools, Winter schools, Honours classes and short seminars on entrepreneurship for non-Dutch students. All courses are offered in English except when the entire group is Dutch.

StudentsInc

Would you like to run a business while still at university? Do you want to graduate on running your own business? StudentsInc (Dutch language website) is home to a number of student businesses and offers programmes to develop your entrepreneurial skills.

UtrechtInc

Have you (nearly) graduated and do you want to start a business? UtrechtInc is the place to find financing, office space, expertise and coaching. UtrechtInc is there for

  • starting entrepreneurs and alumni, doctoral candidates, and researchers (preferably from Utrecht University, Hogeschool Utrecht, UMC Utrecht)
  • who are still in the ideas phase OR further along (less than five years) and have
  • and have a (IT) start-up focusing on health, environmental sustainability, or education.

Would you like to know more? Visit the UtrechtInc site, register your idea, and drop by for a cup of coffee.

Enactus

Would you like to know whether entrepreneurship is right for you? Are you driven, socially conscious, and ambitious? Are you willing to spend a year working on a business for at least 8 hours a week? Enactus Utrecht (Dutch language website) offers you the opportunity to run a business and provides workshops and professional coaching.

Useful links

  • Register at the Chambers of Commerce.
  • You can read about all the other things you need to take care of on the Revenue Service (Belastingdienst) website.
  • Join relevant groups on LinkedIn to share knowledge online and expand your network.
  • Will you run an especially sustainable, innovative, and/or internationally oriented business? The Netherlands Enterprise Agency can support you with subsidies, knowledge, regulation, and more.

Upon completion of your current Master's degree programme, you can follow a one-year (Dutch language) teacher training programme. This will grant you a first degree teaching qualification for secondary education. That means you will be able to work in the upper and lower years of vmbo, havo, and vwo in the Netherlands.

Take a look at UU's Master's degree programme selection site.

When you complete your Master's degree programme, if you enjoy doing research in your area of expertise, perhaps you should pursue a PhD. You will start out as a research assistant or trainee research worker. Check the two-years Master's Programmes of Utrecht University.

The best way to find a research traineeship is to contact the professor in the field you want to specialise in. Another option would be www.academictransfer.nl.

If you'd like to pursue a PhD at Utrecht University, your PhD programme will fall under the auspices of one of the Graduate Schools. For more information, consult the Prout | PhD Network Utrecht website.