The Bartlett School of Architecture


Design for Performance and Interaction MArch

This radical programme teaches students to design performances and interactive experiences.

Design for Performance and Interaction MArch
About the programme

What happens when we design not in three dimensions but four? This radical, multidisciplinary Master's degree teaches students to understand and design performances and interactive experiences.

This programme welcomes students from an array of artistic and technical backgronds to work with interactive technologies to consider objects, space, people and systems as potential performers. 

At the core of this programme is the belief that the creation of spaces for performance and the creation of performances within them are symbiotic activities. 

Ruairi Glynn, Programme Director

Throughout this programme, students gain advanced skills to design for performance and interaction, informed by multidisciplinary theories taken from performing arts, digital media, spatial interaction, anthropology, sociology, cybernetics, cognitive neuroscience and aesthetics. Structured to offer the widest scope for creativity, the course facilitates and empowers students to find their own unique design vision, with an emphasis on prototyping, from interactive objects to staged events and performance architecture.

The programme is taught in UCL’s cutting-edge facilities at Here East, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park - a space renowned as a hotbed for technological innovation and home to some of the UK’s leading performance and design companies.

Programme highlights

  • Design and make individual and collaborative projects that feature in an end-of-year public exhibition of interactive objects, installations and performances
  • Learn to communicate your ideas in four dimensions through animation, film, live presentation and staged events, podcasts and online, virtual and augmented environments 
  • Gain a working knowledge of technical systems including sound, lighting, interactive computation and electronics. 
  • Use state-of-the-art technologies at UCL at Here East including virtual reality systems, motion capture rigs, multi-channel surround sound systems and robotics
  • Gain an understanding of parametric tools required when designing or adapting large performance spaces including acoustics, lighting, seating (spectator line of sight) and simulation of occupant behaviour

Key staff

Programme Director: Ruairi Glynn
History and Theory Coordinator: Prof Stephen Gage
Skills Coordinator: Dr Christopher Leung

Modes and duration

Full time – 15 months, beginning in October
Flexible  –  two to five years

Entry Requirements 

Normally a minimum of a second-class degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants are also expected to have a strong portfolio of design and/or performance work. Applicants with extensive experience in the field may also be considered. 

The application deadline is 27 July 2018 for 2018 entry
We strongly advise early application, as our programmes are over-subscribed and competition is high. 


The Bartlett School of Architecture is one of the world's top-ranked architecture schools and our graduates enjoy excellent employment opportunities.

This programme empowers graduates with specialist knowledge and skills that are relevant across a wide variety of areas and creative industries, including spatial and urban design, lighting and sound installation, performance and event design and virtual and physical community building.  

All Staff

Programme Director
Ruairi Glynn | Interactive Architecture Lab
Practising installation artist and Director of Design for Performance & Interaction MArch, Ruairi Glynn has exhibited internationally with recent shows at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, the National Art Museum of China in Beijing, and the Tate Modern in London. He has worked with leading cultural and research institutions including the Royal Academy of Arts, the Medical Research Council and BBC and has built public installations for commercial clients including Twitter, Nike and Arup.

History and Theory Coordinator
Prof Stephen Gage
Professor of Innovative Technology at The Bartlett, Stephen Gage is an internationally recognised leader in the education of interactive and performance architecture. He has taught at The Bartlett since 1993, holding posts as Director of Technology and Director of Architectural Design as well as leading various funded research projects, and supervising Masters & PhD students. His graduates are now some of the industry leaders in interactive and performance architecture including Jason Bruges, Dominic Harris & Usman Haque, to name just a few.

Skills Coordinator
Dr Christopher Leung
Christopher Leung trained as an architect at The Bartlett and earned a doctorate from UCL for his work on passive thermal actuators applied to environmental control in buildings. His work explores the relationship between machines, occupants and buildings, and has been published in peer-reviewed journal articles, together with his collaborations in the sixteen*(makers) group.

Paul Bavister
Award winning architect Paul Bavister’s practice specialises in public sector design, in particular acoustic and performance spaces. Paul is an active member of sound art group Audialsense, and has lectured internationally on the relationships between sound and architecture. Paul is Senior Associate Director at Flanagan Lawrence, Director of Soundforms, and both a design tutor and PhD candidate, at The Bartlett School of Architecture.

Luca DelatorreCharcoalblue
Luca Delatorre is an acoustic and soundscape designer merging his musical performance background with his training in architecture and engineering. He is a senior consultant at Charcoalblue, the world’s leading theatre, acoustics and digital design consultancy. His interests span the interactions of architecture, sound and hearing. His research has examined musicians’ acoustic perception on stage and the conditions that allow them to perform at their best. His research was directly applied to the design of Hoddinot Hall in Cardiff for the BBC Wales symphonic orchestra and Milton Court at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Ersinhan Ersin | Marshmallow Laser Feast | xpld
Visual artist and Director at the legendary Marshmallow Laser Feast, Ersinhan Ersin’s work explores interaction between virtual spaces, light and the body. He often collaborates with performers including the New Movement Collective, and Imogen Heap. His work has been exhibited around the world including Lisbon Triennial, Istanbul Design Biennale, and Sundance Film Festival.

Jessica InInteractive Architecture Lab
Formerly an architectural designer at Heatherwick Studio, Jessica In is responsible for the production of Google Campus in Mountain View and the Hudson Yards Vessel sculpture projects in New York. She has taught at The Bartlett on undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

Sean Malikides 
Sean Malikides is a mechatronic engineer and designer working at the intersection of science, technology and the arts. His work explores novel scientific concepts and their application in an artistic or educational context, most notably his collaboration with Nick Ryan in the development of custom electronics for the ‘DX17’ interactive sound sculpture, as well as his recent collaboration with the Interactive Architecture Lab and Marshmallow Laser Feast in the development of the kinetic light installation ‘Iris’.

Phoenix Perry | Code Liberation Foundation
Computer science researcher, game company owner, artist, programmer, game designer and activist Phoenix Perry creates physical games and user experiences. As an advocate for women in game development, she founded Code Liberation Foundation, which teaches women to program games for free. Phoenix mentors new leaders in the field and strives to infuse the industry with new voices. She is also principal founder of Dozen Eyes Games, a company producing works for social change and interactive installations.

Yuri Suzuki
Sound artist and electronic musician Yuri Suzuki produces work that explores the realms of sound through exquisitely designed pieces. Between 1999 and 2005 he worked for Japanese art unit Maywa Denki, where he developed a strong interest in music and technology. In 2005 he moved to London where he has developed his own hugely successful artist practice. He has also taught on the Royal College of Art programmes Design Interaction and Information Experience Design.

Alexander Whitley
Choreographer and dancer Alexander Whitley has created work for several of the UK’s leading companies including the Royal Ballet, Rambert, Balletboyz and Birmingham Royal Ballet. He is a New Wave Associate artist at Sadler’s Wells Theatre, and an associate artist at DanceEast. He collaborates across art forms, working with filmmakers, designers, digital artists and composers to broaden the scope of dance. His own Dance Company, has enjoyed sell out performances and has a reputation for engaged work with world-class collaborators.

Fiona ZischInteractive Architecture Lab
Architect and experimental psychologist with experience in film production design and designing for extreme environments, Fiona Zisch researches the cognition, experience, and reciprocity of architectural space, bodies, and movement. She works between the Institute of Behavioural Neuroscience at UCL and The Bartlett School of Architecture. She also teaches undergraduate Experimental Psychology at UCL and speaks at and organises international architecture and neuroscience conferences and festivals.

Please note: The tutors listed here are subject to change and do not include the many other Bartlett staff, critics, and consultants that students will also encounter.

Affiliated practices and groups 

Our staff are very closely linked to several creative practices and institutions, in particular: 

  • Arup
  • Bompass & Parr
  • Ciminod Studio
  • Jason Bruges Studio
  • Intel
  • Marshmallow Laser Feast
  • onedotzero
  • Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance
  • Royal Central School of Speech and Drama
  • ScanLAB Projects
  • Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company
  • Stufish
  • Troika
  • Twitter
  • Soundform
  • Umbrellium


Programme Director: Ruairi Glynn
Admissions enquiries: Thea Heintz

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