Duke in London-Drama

A 6-Week Summer Drama & Performance Program

Program Alert

Duke in London - Drama is on hiatus while the Global Education Office revises the program. We will not be accepting applications for this program at this time. If you are interested in studying the arts in London, please visit our new program Duke in London - Arts which is scheduled to run in 2022.

Study Drama and Performance in the Theater Capital of the World

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Experience and study 15-20 productions in London

Over the six-week period, you'll experience intensive study of drama and performance through coursework, live performances, expert-facilitated discussions, and participatory scene work. You'll live in a residence hall at University College London (UCL) in central London and take courses taught in collaboration with a distinguished group of British theater practitioners and scholars. 

There is no prerequisite except the desire to learn more about drama and theater and the commitment to actively participate. The program welcomes undergraduate students from all disciplines – engineers as much as English majors, pre-meds as much as future performers – who have a lively interest in theater. 

Program Fast Facts

Location: London, United Kingdom

Term: Summer

Dates: June 27, 2020 - August 8, 2020

Application Deadline: February 1st

Academic Theme(s): English, Theater Studies

Credit Type: Duke Credit

Eligibility: There are no prerequisites for this program. Non-Duke students are welcome to apply.

Duke Affiliation: Co-sponsored by the Duke Department of Theater Studies and the Duke English Department

Housing: Residence Hall

GEO Advisor: Carolyn Covalt

  • Abbey Road

  • Globe Theater

  • London

  • Regent's Park

  • Shakespeare's house

  • Duke in London-Drama


You’ll enroll in two courses, each offering one Duke credit. No pass/fail option or auditing is permitted for either course. Both courses may be used to count toward the major requirements in the English Department or the Department of Theater Studies.



Theater in London: Text  

(DS2, DS3, or DS4; ALP, CCI) 1.0 Credit

Prerequisite: None

A survey of drama from the Elizabethan period to the present based on performances offered by the Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal National Theatre, and other theaters in London and Stratford-upon-Avon. Twenty plays will be seen and studied. Text fulfills one course of the Reading Drama requirement of the Theater Studies major. 

Theater in London: Performance 

(ALP, CCI) 1.0 Credit

Prerequisite: None

Understanding the growth of a play from the script to final production, with focus on shows playing in London. Includes backstage theater tours, scene work, observations, audition workshops with theater practitioners, and supervised projects. Performance serves as an elective toward the Theater Studies major.


Classes generally meet weekdays from 9:30 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. Performances are generally weekday evenings and matinees, with an occasional weekend performance.


A select group of distinguished actors, writers, directors, and designers involved with the productions you'll see will visit the class when possible. Past guests have included:


  • Lynn Redgrave
  • Samuel West
  • Juliet Stevenson
  • Roger Rees
  • Alex Jennings
  • Toby Stephens
  • Linus Roache
  • Daniel Evans
  • Sophie Thompson


  • Marianne Elliott
  • John Caird
  • Matthew Warchus
  • Phyllida Lloyd
  • Peter Gill
  • Deborah Warner


  • Lee Hall
  • Samuel Adamson
  • Martin Sherman

Theater Composers

  • Gary Yershon

The program usually includes excursions to the Chichester Theatre Festival, Hampton Court Palace, Hatfield House, and Stratford-upon-Avon.


So that every student understands drama from an actor’s or director’s point of view, you'll be required to participate in two scenes coached and evaluated by a noted British actor.

In recent years, acting workshops and scene work have been supervised by Rory Kinnear and Paul Ready, leading actors with the National Theatre of Great Britain, and William Houston, leading actor with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Students are not graded on acting ability, but on the ideas and effort they bring to their scene work.

Students in musical theater are offered the opportunity to participate in a master class in musical performance led by Michael England, Musical Director of Spamalot and a leading musical theater performer (recently this has been Olivier Award winner Daniel Evans, star of Sunday in the Park with George, and Gavin Creel, currently starring on Broadway in Godspell).


You will be housed in single-occupancy rooms in a residence hall of the University College London (UCL), centrally located near Russell Square and King’s Cross. It’s also near the British Museum and convenient to the underground and Theatre District. There are kitchen facilities in the residence hall and many inexpensive restaurants nearby.


Estimates are based on previous years’ programs and the current exchange rate. All costs are subject to change.

Summer 2020

  Duke Students Non-Duke Students
Tuition $7,158 $7,158
Program Fee $3,300 $3,300
Transcript Fee N/A $120
Other Costs Other Costs Other Costs
TOTAL (Estimated): $17,308 $17,428

Explanation of Costs

Financial Aid

Duke students receiving financial aid are eligible for aid for this program (work-study funds must be converted to loans). Students are individually responsible for making the necessary arrangements with the Karsh Office of Undergraduate Financial Supportand the Duke Bursar’s Office.

Non-Duke students are not eligible to receive financial aid at Duke and should contact their home institutions for financial aid information.


This program offers the following scholarship opportunities:


Attendance is required at all classes, excursions, and group events. Given the intense nature of this program, late arrival and/or early departure is not permitted.

  • Arrival: June 27, 2020
  • Departure: August 8, 2020


You will make your own travel arrangements to and from the program site. You are expected to arrive on the arrival date above, which means departing the U.S. the day prior. You may depart the program site at any point on the departure date. Once you have a flight itinerary, log in to MyGlobalEd to update your travel registry.

Housing Before/After

You will need to make your own housing arrangements if you will be arriving before the program start date or leaving later than the program end date.



No visa is required of U.S. citizens to participate in this program. Non-U.S. citizens should pay special attention to the visa requirements for their specific citizenship by contacting the country embassy to find out if any visa restrictions are in effect.


All participants must have a valid passport. Make sure your passport has at least six months of validity beyond the program end date to avoid unintended disruptions. For instructions on obtaining or renewing your U.S. passport, visit passports.state.gov.

International Student Identity Card

An International Student Identity Card (ISIC) is optional. ISIC is the only internationally recognized form of student ID, endorsed by UNESCO. If purchased in the U.S., the card also carries with it a supplemental insurance policy, which can prove to be very helpful in the event of serious injury. You may purchase this card through www.myisic.com. Processing of the card takes between 4-15 days.


Leadership of the program will rotate between professors Sarah Beckwith, Bradley Rogers, and Jeff Storer. The program faculty director(s) can assist with questions related to program academics, admissions, on-site needs, etc. The faculty director for 2020 is Jeff Storer. For all other inquiries, please contact the GEO representative listed.

Bradley Rogers

Assistant Professor in the Department of Theater Studies

Sarah Beckwith

Katherine Everett Gilbert Professor of English

Jeff Storer

Professor of the Practice of Theater Studies


Deadline: February 1st

This program has rolling admission. Applications will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis until the program fills; after that, qualified students are added to a waitlist and notified of openings. Applications must be received by the deadline to be considered. Application opens November 1.

Priority: Priority is given to applicants who apply early.

Minimum GPA: There is no minimum GPA.

Non-Duke students: Non-Duke students are welcome to apply for this program. In the past our roster has included students from Yale, William and Mary, University of Michigan, Michigan State, Emory, Wesleyan, Wake Forest, and Point Pleasant.

You must be a degree-seeking student in good standing at an accredited college or university. Consult your university’s registrar and/or study away advisor for assistance with transfer credit. Students who are not matriculated at a college or university are not eligible to participate in Duke’s study away programs.

*Special Note for First Year Applicants: Program acceptance cannot be determined until after Dean’s Checks are completed in January.


Start your application early to ensure that it is complete by the deadline! Incomplete applications will not be forwarded to the program directors for consideration.

Submit the following items using MyGlobalEd

  1. Online application
  2. Official transcript(s) from all colleges and universities attended. First-year students should wait for fall semester grades to be posted before submitting their transcript.
  3. Personal statement, no longer than one page, explaining why you would like to participate
  4. Academic letter of recommendation (one)


Madeline Taylor on London: Oh, The Things that Bring You to Duke!

"We were sprinting through the streets of London, past 221B Baker Street, past famous historical landmarks, just to catch this production with an actual British rock star playing Jesus. We normally saw shows for class each night, but this one was not on the list. Even though we had a free night, we still chose to go out and see another show. It was a magical performance.”

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