M.A. Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research

A new master’s programme is currently being offered within the scope of a partnership between five European universities. It is aimed at students who are interested in working in international and intercultural contexts such as festivals, co-productions, exchange programmes and collaborations.

This master’s programme is a response to the challenges being posed by increasing international and intercultural collaboration in the performing arts, and is establishing a new field of study, that of general and comparative dramaturgy. Going beyond the classical understanding of dramaturgy, it aims to establish dramaturges as experts for international and intercultural issues, who can help people to view the proximity of the Other – too often perceived as threat – as an opportunity. The programme’s comparative approach intends to connect different theatre cultures with one another and to mediate between them. At the same time, the attribute of “general” dramaturgy means that these dramaturges, as the theoretical minds of theatre, will be equipped to answer questions that go beyond day-to-day operations and examine the foundations of theatre. These are both questions of aesthetics and interdisciplinarity which have resulted from a broadening of the concept of theatre and changes to the job profile of the dramaturge that have taken place over the course of the last few decades due to developments such as the “post-dramatic theatre” and the “performative turn”. The dramaturges will also be prepared to discuss questions from the fields of philosophy, sociology and politics, for example theories of space, history, the network and urbanism.

This master’s programme aims to prepare students for positions in international cultural collaborations, in cultural education and in multinational cultural productions during a study programme that focuses on both research and practice. It is open to students in the participating countries who have a pronounced interest in transnational collaborations in the arts. During their studies at two European universities, they will become intensely familiar with theatre practice and research in different national contexts and will receive profound insights into a wide variety of production conditions and processes in the different countries during a mandatory internship abroad.

Students will graduate from the two universities that they studied at with a double degree M.A. in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research.

Programme Content

The programme content of the Masters in CDPR includes, amongst other things, the fundamental issues of dramaturgical practice and theory, artistic-practical work in scenic projects, workshops and theory-practice seminars, independent artistic, theoretical and organisational-curating work, the theory, history and analysis of the theatre in all of its variations and manifestations, the representation and critique of theatrical forms, theatre technology, production dramaturgy and insights into the fundamentals of theatre organisation (stage, contract and publishing law, theatre management, press and publicity work).

Students will benefit from the advantages of a full university education: From a wide range of seminars that is oriented towards the primacy of education and doesn’t reduce the course to an instrumental training, over the possibility of making use of specialist libraries and the TFM media library, to a great variety of courses (lectures, workshops, symposia) at the institute and in related subjects and departments. In addition to the university courses, students have a self-managed rehearsal stage at their own disposal, technical equipment to work with video, sound and light, a digital platform for the documentation of their own works as well as the possibility to use the rehearsal rooms at Frankfurt LAB.

Direction: Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Müller-Schöll, Dr. des. Leonie Otto (Coordination).

Furthermore, Fanti Baum, M.A., Inga Bendukat, M.A., Dr. Ramona Mosse and Sophie Osburg, M.A. teach as full-time Theater Studies lecturers at the Institute for Theatre, Film and Media Studies.

Programme Content

Studying abroad and student exchange
Students complete an internship and two semesters at one of the partner universities in Brussels, Paris, Oslo or Helsinki* and receive a double degree M.A. in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research.
Apart from the general semester fees (administration costs, semester ticket), you won’t have to pay any further tuition fees at either your home university or at any of the partner universities. If we can’t offer you a full DAAD scholarship, you can still apply for ERASMUS grants or study-abroad BAföG. Before you study abroad, you will have an individual consulting session.

*In case of an exchange to Helsinki, currently no double degree can be granted.

Digital theatre research platform
We have been recording guest lectures, discussions, artist talks and scenic performance projects for a quite a few years and make them public for students of the Institute.
See here:


Hessian Theatre Academy
Due to the dual anchoring of this course in both the Institute for Theatre-, Film- and Media Studies and the Hessian Theatre Academy, the course has developed a close connection between theoretical and practical theatre work. The dramaturgy programme enables students to exchange and collaborate with students from other theatre areas (theatre studies, directing, drama, scenography, etc.) in courses and specific projects during their studies.

Friedrich Hölderlin Guest Professor for General and Comparative Dramaturgy
With the support of the DAAD and the International Office of the Goethe University, the Chair of Theatre Studies regularly staffs a Friedrich Hölderlin Guest Professorship for General and Comparative Dramaturgy with international guests whose work combines theory and artistic practice in an exemplary manner. In past semesters, theatre scholar Freddie Rokem (Tel Aviv), academic Esa Kirkoppelto (Helsinki), academic Annalisa Piccirillo (Naples), the director and theatre academic Tore Vagn Lid (Oslo) as well as the theatre scholar Khalid Amine (Marokko) were guests in Frankfurt.

Lectures and Partner-Institutions
In addition to the full-time lecturers at the Institute and the Hessian Theatre Academy, as well as the lecturers of the partner universities, amongst others, the following lecturers teach and have previously taught this course: Prof. Dr. Norbert Abels, Prof. Dr. Khalid Amine, Robin Arthur, Bjoern Auftrag, Dr. Ira Avneri, Sibylle Baschung, Prof. Hans-Ulrich Becker, Esther Boldt, Prof. Dr. Dagmar Borrmann, Uwe Carstensen, Laurent Chétouane, Prof. Dr. Kattrin Deufert, Prof. Ingo Diehl, Dr. Miriam Dreysse, Markus Droß, Tim Etchells, Prof. Wanda Golonka, Prof. em. Dr. Werner Hamacher (T), Martin Hammer/Maria Magdalena Ludewig (T), Prof. em. Dr. Ulrike Haß, Prof. em. Dr. Carl Hegemann, Prof. Dieter Heitkamp, Rolf C. Hemke, Hans Hollmann, Manuela Infante, Prof. Dr. Christian Janecke, John Jesurun, Prof. Ruth Kanner, Alexander Kerlin, Prof. Dr. Esa Kirkkopelto, Prof. Ernst-August Klötzke, Chris Kondek, Juliane Kremberg, Konrad Kuhn, Katja Leclerc, Matthias Lilienthal, Prof.Stefanie Lorey, Christof Loy, Thomas Maagh, Florian Malzacher, Lina Majdalanie (geb. Saneh), Uwe Mengel, Kris Merken, Bernhard Mikeska, Bettina Milz, Sergio Morabito, Malin Nagel, Gerardo Naumann, Matthias Naumann, Christof Nel, Boris Nikitin, Prof. Mike Pearson, Katharina Pelosi, Benedikt von Peter, Christine Peters, Dr. Annalisa Piccirillo, Thomas Plischke, René Pollesch, redpark, Jeanette Rohrbacher, Prof. Dr. Freddie Rokem, Prof. rosalie (T), Felix Rothenhäusler, Richard Schechner, Imanuel Schipper, Prof. Thomas Schmidt, Johannes Schmit, Dr. Philipp Schulte, Prof. Heike Schuppelius, Bernhard Siebert, Dr. Tim Schuster, Jan-Philipp Stange, Katharina Stephan, Prof. Dr. Malgorzata Sugiera, Friederike Thielmann, Marion Tiedtke, Susanne Traub, Norihiko Tsukinowa, Gerd-Theo Umberg, Camilla Vetters, Dr. Dr. Marion Victor, Helena Waldmann, Barbara Weber, Prof. em. Dr. Samuel Weber, Rosa Wernecke, Prof. Dr. Kristin Westphal, Prof. Dr. Susanne Winnacker, Olaf Winter, Susanne Zaun, Ivna Zić, Jonas Zipf.

The Master Programme in Dramaturgy is engaged in close exchanges with, amongst others: dasarts Amsterdam; Frankfurt LAB; Kampnagel Kulturfabrik, Hamburg; Künstlerhaus Mousonturm, Frankfurt; Oper Frankfurt; PACT Zollverein, Essen; Plateforme de la jeune création franco-allemande; Ruhrtriennale; Schauspiel Frankfurt; Tanzlabor 21, Frankfurt; dem Festival „Frankfurter Positionen“ der BHF-Bank-Stiftung; dem Festival Impulse, NRW; Théâtre des Amandiers, Nanterre; Tanzquartier Wien; Theater der Welt; Wiesbaden Biennale; Zentrum für Kunst und Medien, Karlsruhe; Volksbühne Berlin.

International Network
The Masters Programme in Dramaturgy has a distinct international orientation due to the invitation of international scientific and artistic guest lecturers and the collaboration with different european and non-european universities. Cooperation partners include the following universities: Universitetet i Bergen, Stockholms universitet, Teatterikorkeakoulu Helsinki, Aberystwyth University, Københavns Universitet, Université Libre de Bruxelles; Université Paris 8 Vincennes – Saint-Denis, Université Paris 10 Nanterre, Universidad da Coruña, Universität Wien, Univerzita Karlova Praha, University of Chicago, Universität Tel Aviv, Kunsthøgskolen i Oslo.

Information and Application

Application process for the international master’s programme in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research (double degree) at the Institute of Theatre, Film and Media Studies (Goethe University) and the institutes of “Spectacle Vivant” at the Université libre de Bruxelles; “Mise en scène et dramaturgie” at the Université Paris Nanterre; the “Theatre Academy” of the Teatterikorkeakoulu Helsinki* and the “Theaterhøgskolen“ of the Kunsthøgskolen Oslo.

Standard period of study:
Four semesters

Master of Arts in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research Double degree from the Goethe University and one of the following universities:

Université libre de Bruxelles
Université Paris Nanterre
University of the Arts Helsinki*
Oslo National Academy of the Arts

Commencement of studies: Each year at the beginning of the winter semester (October)

Application deadline: May 31 (date of postmark)

*In case of an exchange to Helsinki, currently no double degree can be granted.

Admission requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree or an equivalent qualification accredited by the home university
  • At least two months’ practical experience in the field of dramaturgy or the performing arts
  • Language skills in German (DSH 1 / B2), English (B2) and one other language, preferably French or that of another partner institution in the MA CDPR program (B1)

Application documents
All documents are to be submitted in English both in print and per e-mail combined in one PDF file (cdpr@tfm.uni-frankfurt.de). An application via uni-assist is not possible. Please also have a look at the FAQs for further informationen about the apllication documents

  • Certified copy of the applicant’s degree from an institute of higher education
  • Curriculum vitae including details of education and academic pursuits
  • Letter of motivation that states the reasons for the applicant’s intention to begin studying “Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research”
  • A list of the two favoured Partner Universities (not binding)
  • Proof of the applicant’s interest in dramaturgical practice (e.g. documentation of the applicant’s artistic and theoretical work to date) and/or performance research
  • Analyse and mediate an artistic work that impressed you deeply, with the aim of awakening the interest of a specific group of readers (on two printed pages, 3600 characters including spaces)
  • Language certificates corresponding to the language requirements

Selection procedure
Based on the application documents, which are to be submitted both in print and digitally via email, the audit committee will invite applicants to the entrance examination in writing. The examination will take place at the Goethe University on one weekend in June. Because the selection committee also includes representatives of the international partner institutions, we ask that students to submit their applications in English.

For students who are interested in receiving a degree from the Université libre de Bruxelles, DAAD scholarships covering travel expenses and study expenses to the amount of EUR 720€ per month have been applied for. DAAD scholarships for periods abroad at other partner-institutes will be applied for in October 2018, so full scholarships may be received from October 2019 (winter semester 2019/20) onwards.
If a student does not receive a DAAD scholarship, he or she may still receive ERASMUS-scholarships and/or “Auslands-BAföG”.

Goethe University
Institute for Theatre, Film and Media Studies Master’s programme in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research
Norbert-Wollheim-Platz 1
D-60323 Frankfurt am Main



Master in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research – Frequently Asked Questions

Language skills
Which certificates are accepted as proof of my German skills?

  • German language certificate [DSH-1 / B2]
  • TestDaF: all results with a TDN of min. 4
  • Goethe-certificate C 2
  • KMK- Exam: German Language Diploma / Deutsches Sprachdiplom Zweite Stufe (DSD II), constant Niveau C1
  • DSH of other universities with the minimum level DSH-1
  • telc Deutsch C1 Hochschule

Here you can find more information on the DSH Level: http://www.goethe-university-frankfurt.de/44395113/dsh

When do I have to hand in the documents proving my German skills?
By 31 May (Application Deadline).

English language certificate [B2]
For the application, these language certificates are accepted:

  • a BA certificate of a philological study programme with a focus on the corresponding language,
  • a university entrance qualification for a country in which the language is listed as an official language,
  • a leaving certificate that documents at least 3 years of education in the corresponding language; the grade can’t be less than C,
  • a certificate testifying a successfully accomplished language course at a German or international university or higher education institution, which yields a B2 level,
  • specialist assessments.  […]
  • the admissions committee can accept other certificates given that they are equivalent to the listed certificates.

Other languages
In addition to the German and English certificates, skills in another Language at B1 level are compulsory.


Do I need to translate all my certificates?
First of all, all copies have to be certified/notarized.

If in doubt about the translation or the eligibility of your certificate, please contact us individually (cdpr@tfm.uni-frankfurt.de). We may need to consult with our International Office on the matter.

Please attach:

  • Your higher education certificate, along with
  • A transcript of records (enlisting the courses and grades) (in English or German)

Do I have to send an original copy of my degree certificate or is a copy enough?

  • Please don’t send either. We need certified copies of both your Bachelor degree certificate as well as of your language certificates.

I will not have finished my current degree/have received my graduation certificate by the application deadline. Can I still apply?
Yes. In this case we just need a Transcript of Records. This should indicate an average grade and should certify that you have achieved at least 80% of the total Credit Points of your course of study so far. The Transcript of Records should either be equipped with a stamp by an authority that gives grades or should be verifiable online. We also need verification that the Bachelor course will be finished by the end of the first Master-Semester. This also needs to be certified by a grade-giving authority. If you are offered a place on one of our courses, you are eligible for preliminary enrolment; the Bachelor certificate has to be submitted in the first semester at the University-Service-Centre of the Goethe University.

Do I have to apply with Uni Assist?

Do I need to translate my artistic/theoretical work?
If it is in English, French or German, you don’t need to translate your work. Contact us if your work isn’t in one of those languages and we can figure something out.

Generally, we recommend adding an English abstract to the respective works.

What does „evidence of interest in dramaturgical questions (i.e. through documentation of artistic or theoretical work)” mean? 

  • We have left this question open on purpose, as we are interested in your interpretation of the task. Please send in what you consider suitable and relevant.

Expenses and funding

How much do I have to pay each semester?
There is a fee of approx. 370 EUR per Semester at Goethe University (this includes a ticket for public transportation in the province of Hessen and free entry to most museums in Frankfurt: : https://www.uni-frankfurt.de/43965660/kosten and https://www.uni-frankfurt.de/38935069/semesterbeitrag).

The fees for the two semesters abroad in Brussels will be funded by the DAAD stipend included in the MA CDPR programme (ca. 720 EUR per month), while ERASMUS stipends will be issued for the exchange with Paris.

Which further stipends can you recommend?
Here you will find the list of stipends that our International Office has provided for us.



Please keep in mind that you will receive DAAD funding if you go to Brussels, which may infringe the eligibility to some of the listed programmes.

For general questions on studying in Frankfurt:
For further questions on studying in Frankfurt, check out the website of our International Office: http://www.goethe-university-frankfurt.de/44341978/home

For specific questions on the MA in Comparative Dramaturgy and Performance Research:
If you have any further questions, write an e-mail to cdpr@tfm.uni-frankfurt.de

Study regulations CDPR

Link to the study regulations:
Link to the module handbook:
Link Framework FB 10, MA: