Drama as a field of academic study is well established in British universities, and the University of Hull has played a significant part in its development since 1963. In Britain’s most recent national Teaching Quality Assessment, Hull’s Drama has achieved the maximum of marks.
In Hull, drama is being taught in the Donald Roy Theatre, which lies at the heart of the University’s Gulbenkian Centre. Originally designed by the German-British architect Peter Moro in the late 1960s, and now a listed building, the Gulbenkian Centre is an impressively-equipped Arts Complex with vast educational and artistic potential.
Apart from a large, adaptable Theatre and a versatile Studio Theatre, the building also houses Academic Offices, a state-of-the-art Radio Studio, and generously accommodated Property Stores, Paintshop, Rehearsal Room, Wardrobe, Laundry, and Dressing Rooms.
The department's „main house“ theatre is the primary venue for all public productions. The space is very adaptable, with mobile seating blocks enabling productions to be staged in a variety of ways including proscenium, thrust, traverse, promenade or in-the-round. In addition it has four rehearsal rooms, one of which is equipped with a dance floor. The Donald Roy Theatre can seat up to 250 people. Ticket prices have remained at a subsidised low price of £4.00; shows often sell out quickly.
Technical teaching in the theatre takes place over the three years of the department's BA programme. As part of the course, the first year sees a broad introduction to the theatre and its uses, in the second year, in depth practical options take place focusing on areas, including: Theatre Administration, Stage Management, Costume Design and Realisation, Set Construction, Set Design, Set Realisation and Stage Lighting. In the third year students concentrate on practical projects taking lead roles in productions, including Directing.
Hull University is one of the younger Universities in Great Britain. It was founded in 1927 through the support of local benefactors. The foundation stone was laid by the Duke of York (later King George VI) in 1928. Located on Cottingham Road in Hull, East Yorkshire, the new University College Hull was an outpost of the University of London and offered courses in the arts and pure sciences.