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Introduction to Theatre Directing: Creative Practices

Short Courses – 10 Week – Online


This class will be taught online using a mixture of MS Teams and Zoom – you can take part from the comfort of your own home from anywhere in the world!

This ten week, online course will provide theatre directors with an expanded toolkit they can use as they develop and pitch theatrical productions. Led by an experienced director, each week the students will examine a play through a different lens, enhancing their ability to articulate their own ideas.

You will be lead through the directors process in preparing for a show. Each session will have a distinct focus and will guide you through the many aspects to directing a theatre performance, looking at the creative relationships between the director and the various production heads involved in a making a live performance, analysing text, working with your actors and many more.

By the end of the course you will have:

  • Worked with different methods to analysing and approaching text
  • An understanding and methodology to creating a distinct format and framing devices for your production
  • Developed your skills in pitching and presenting your idea to others
  • Received practical advice on directing a live production

At the end of the course students will have developed a unique vision for their own production of a classic play of their choice.

Credit Rated Pathway

We are offering a credit-rated option for this class, giving students the opportunity to gain SCQF credits upon submission. This will not be mandatory, however students can register for the credit-rated option by following the information in the Credit-Rated tab below.

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If you have any questions about this course before you book it, please get in touch with us at

Please see our FAQs for more information about all aspects of choosing, booking and attending your course.

The important details



10 October - 12 December 2024

Thursdays, 6:30pm - 8:30pm


Course Information

This course is open-access however students are expected to have some theatre experience.

We expect you to undertake a certain amount of self-directed study and preparation out with class times. Students should be open, honest, generous, respectful, hard-working and willing to work as part of a team.

Week One: Choosing and Working With Text

Week Two: Design and Working With a Designer

Week Three: Working with Light

Week Four: Working with Sound

Week Five: Working with Music

Week Six: Working with Video

Week Seven: Pitching Your Production

Week Eight: Forming Creative Teams

Week Nine: Casting Performers/ Pitching

Week Ten: Working with Movement and Dance

This schedule is a guide and maybe subject to change

You will need access to a device such as a desktop computer, laptop or tablet which allows you to access the internet with a screen large enough to see the group members during online sessions. You will need internet connection which is fast enough to take part in video sessions on MS Teams/Zoom and to watch film footage.

You may also want to consider whether you have a space you can use where you can work without interruption. Please keep in mind that the other students taking part in the course will be able to see what’s behind you when you are online.

  • Plan and prepare to attend all classes
  • Dress comfortably in clothes which are suitable for the activity you are taking part in.
  • Bring a notepad and pen/pencil in case you wish to make notes.
  • Please bring a bottle of water to stay hydrated during your class.

Credit-rated short courses are designed in accordance with the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF).

By studying a credit-rated short course, students can benchmark their learning against national standards, and credits may be used towards further education programmes at many institutions throughout the world.

The course is 20 hours of study and is worth 10 SCQF credits and 5 ECTS credits. This course is set at SCQF level 8.

There is an additional fee of £100 to take part in the credit-rated portion of the course. Please ensure you have already signed up to the course via the Book Now button on the webpage. Once you have completed that, please sign up for the credit-rated option, by completing this booking form:

Credit-rated Booking Form

By studying a credit-rated course, you will need to be matriculated to RCS*, we require some additional information from credit-rated students for this reason. Please read through the section below thoroughly before you submit. If you have any questions about what is required, please email and we can help you.

* Please note although Credit-Rated Short Courses students require matriculation to get their accreditation, you will not be a full time matriculated student of RCS. Credit-Rated Short Courses do not qualify for student visas due to the short term nature of the course. You will also not qualify for a student email address or student card.

Please read the following eligible evidence dependant on your nationality and immigration status:

Scottish/Welsh/English/Northern Irish 
(Please provide 1 of the following)
– Passport
– UK Driving Licence
– Other Photo ID

Irish (Please provide all of the following)
– Passport

Europeans with Settled or Pre-Settled Status (Please provide all of the following)
– Passport
– Online Immigration Status (via Sharecode)

Europeans (post-Brexit) (Please provide all of the following)
– Passport
– Proof of Entry to the UK
– Online Immigration Status (via Sharecode)

Non-Europeans who can use the e-gates (Nationals of the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore and Japan) (Please provide all of the following)
– Passport
– Proof of Entry to the UK
– Vignette
– Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)

Online Credit Rated courses:
– if studying an online credit-rated course from your own country (outside of UK) you are only required to submit your passport.
– if studying an online credit-rated course within the UK, but do not hold a UK passport, please follow the guidance from above.

The Credit Rated or Admissions team may require further information or proof from individuals, and may be in contact with you to provide further evidence.

Providing a ShareCode
If you are providing a ShareCode as part of your evidence please visit and follow the instructions to access your code, and provide it in the Experience section of the Booking Form.

Alasdair Hunter is a Scottish director and part of a new generation of Shakespearean artists across the world who have found connection through their membership of the Shakespeare Theatre Association.

After studying theatre at the University of Glasgow and training as a director at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and Shakespeare’s Globe, Alasdair started his career in assistant directing, working for companies such as Borderline, The Tron, Random Accomplice, Perth Theatre, the Lyric Belfast and the Flea Theatre in New York City.

He started directing Shakespeare’s plays in 2007 with TITUS ANDRONICUS and has had a focus on Shakespeare’s plays ever since, producing and directing guerrilla productions of MACBETH and ROMEO AND JULIET in Glasgow.

He has directed 17 of the 38 Shakespeare plays, including HAMLET for Bard in the Botanics, THE TEMPEST for Stone Soup Shakespeare, and most recently SECRET MISCHIEFS (Measure for Measure & Richard III) for the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and KING LEAR for East 15.

In 2019 he founded SHAKESPEARE.SCOT in 2019, which launched with a performance of PERICLES aboard the RRS Discovery in Dundee in partnership with Dundee Rep.

SHAKESPEARE.SCOT curates performance projects that bring together Scottish and international artists to collaborate with the plays of William Shakespeare as the starting point.

Alasdair spent five years working for the National Theatre on the NT Connections programme, visiting and supporting companies of young people across the breadth of the UK and Ireland.

Alasdair is part of the international Shakespeare Ensemble that finds its lineage in the original practice projects curated by Ben Crystal at Shakespeare’s Globe and the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse that he worked on in the mid-2010s.

Alasdair enjoys fruitful teaching and guest directing relationships with top UK drama schools including the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Rose Bruford and East 15 Acting School.

Alasdair also works abroad, particularly with the Prague Shakespeare Company, where he will direct LOVE’S LABOUR’S LOST in summer 2023.

This course will run online on Thursdays evenings for 10-weeks from 10 October – 12 December 2024, 6:30pm – 8:30pm.

The course fee is £195 which is the equivalent to £19.50 per session, and can be paid in full or in instalments before the course end date.

Further Information

We want to ensure as many children, young people and adult learners as possible can access the performing and production arts education that is offered through Short Courses at RCS. Financial support options available for Short Courses include:

Agnes Allan Bursary

Agnes Allan was a teacher, passionate about inclusion, and this bursary scheme exists to offer support to students to participate in the performing or production arts.

The Agnes Allan Bursary provides some support to students who may require financial assistance to take part in a short course in dance, drama, music, production or screen.

Anyone who wishes to take part in our Short Courses and faces a financial barrier can apply for bursary support to help meet the cost of tuition fees.

James McAvoy Drama Scholarships

BAFTA-winning and Golden Globe nominated actor James McAvoy is committed to nurturing the creative potential of young Scots who experience barriers to access and participate in drama at RCS Short Courses.

James is a graduate of the BA Acting programme at RCS and Patron of the Junior Conservatoire of Drama. The Glasgow-born actor has funded the new James McAvoy Drama Scholarships to enable young people to experience the world-class drama training at RCS as he did.

The scholarship aims to support applicants who would otherwise find meeting the cost of tuition fees at RCS a barrier to accessing pre-Higher Education drama training at the Royal Conservatoire.

You can find more information about these funds on our Financial Support page.

We run various promotional offers for our Short Courses and Summer Schools. You can view our current offers on our Promotional Offers page.

You should contact us at to request your discount code before booking a course.

Please note, only one promotional offer can be applied per course and should be used at the time of booking as we are unable to apply a discounts retrospectively.

Please see our Short Course FAQs for more information about all aspects of choosing, booking and attending your course.

Please see our Short Courses – Terms and Conditions for more information about your contract with Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and Cancellation and Refund policies.

Sign up to our mailing list to receive the latest updates of courses, offers and news from Short Courses. You can do this by completing this short online form found here.

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