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A production still of Orestes 2.0
Orestes 2.0 (2020) Photo: Manuel Rotenberg.

Application Information MFA Program in Directing

We thank you for your interest in the MFA Directing Program!

Applications for the Fall 2024 admission cycle will open on September 6, 2023 and close on January 3, 2024. 

Application Information

The information below describes materials you will need to upload as you complete your application. After you’ve prepared these materials, you can submit your application via the UC San Diego application portal.

For a complete application, the following materials must be included:

  • Unofficial copies of transcripts/academic records from all post-secondary institutions attended
  • A minimum of three letters of recommendation from individuals that can speak to your artistic, leadership, and collaborative abilities as well as your potential for graduate studies. For the online letter of recommendation process, you must provide the email address of each recommender.
  • Portfolio of work including clips and/or images of your directing work, a resume listing plays you’ve directed and any other artistic engagements or achievements. 
  • Statement of purpose. Approximately 2-3 pages in length about yourself, your interest in directing, your view of the role of a director, purpose for attending graduate school, and how you hope to see yourself within the landscape of contemporary theatre. 
  • Diversity Statement. A one page statement articulating your skills, experience, and/or willingness to engage in activities that would enhance inclusion, diversity, and equity efforts in our department and beyond into American theatre. 


You will be notified if a personal interview with the head of directing is to be scheduled. Each interview will be scheduled for approximately 30-45 minutes. We hope to gain an impression about your range of skills, the scope of your imagination, your ability to analyze dramatic text, your vision for leading and inspiring collaborators, and your command of the theatre as an expressive medium. We also seek to determine your potential for growth as a director of theater.

In your interview, be prepared to discuss one play from the following: Mud, by María Irene Fornés, Gloria, by Brandon Jacobs-Jenkins, Seagull (Thinking of You), by Tina Satter, or Pullman, WA, by Young Jean Lee.  We will be interested in your ability to analyze text, articulate how the narrative might be expressed and the performance event crafted. See this interview as a chance to open your imagination, to share your unique point of view, and to provide us with an impression of your leadership abilities.

Feel free to present information about productions you have directed. While production photographs and video clips are very important, anything you wish to present that you feel will give us a clearer understanding of your work as a theatre artist and your potential for creative growth can be shared. Further, we hope you will be prepared to discuss how you see yourself in relation to the contemporary landscape of American theater through particular plays or projects you have in mind for the future.

Open Houses

Interested in learning more about the program? Join us for a Zoom Open House to meet faculty and other applicants. Email the Graduate Coordinator at to receive the Zoom invite.

Tuesday, 12.5.23, 11am PT & Thursday, 12.7.23, 11am PT


If you have questions about the application process or about the materials required of you, please contact the Graduate Coordinator at (858) 534-1046 or