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  • Mark Westbrook

Should I Go To Drama School?

Drama school is one of the very best ways there is to get into a serious career in acting. (Obviously the absolute best way is to be spotted in some local amateur production and be swept off into stardom based on your performance - but this is sadly not a reality for the vast majority of us). A good drama school will set you up with a solid foundation upon which to build your acting credentials, and it will do this in a number of different ways.

Firstly, it shows that you are serious about your craft. If you want it enough to spend a few years learning how to do it to the best of your ability, you are showing the world (which includes agents and casting directors, don’t forget) that you are dedicated enough to put the graft in.

Secondly, it will give you a huge arsenal of acting techniques under your belt. You can learn all sorts from drama school, and we’re not just talking acting - movement and vocal training to help you make the most of your body and your voice; specialist training such as stage combat; monologue training - the list is almost as long as Shakespeare’s collected works.

Thirdly, you will get the chance to act on stage. This is incredibly valuable experience and will help you in your future career enormously - from learning how to follow cues, to where to stand to your best advantage - all this and more will be featured in a good drama school course.

Some drama schools also offer the chance to find agency representation after the course is over and you’ve gained your qualification - this is, of course, not guaranteed, but it’s something to bear in mind when you are considering your options.

You should also know that a qualification from a good drama school actually carries as much weight, if not more, than a similar course from a university. This is partly because drama schools have extremely rigorous entry requirements, usually needing several auditions to get into, and you will find the rejection lists from a prestigious drama school are far longer than the list of accepted students. This means that if you get in, you have proven that you are one of the best, and you will be regarded with much more favour by the industry in your future auditions for work.

Drama school can help you enormously with audition training, which is incredibly useful if you are one of those people with a tendency to crumble under pressure. Then there’s the options for specialist training from industry veterans, who can provide knowledge from their vast amounts of experience, to help you get further up the ladder to success.

So you want to be an actor and you’re considering your options. Should you go to drama school, or should you just carry on acting in local plays and hoping there’s an agent in the audience who will be wowed by your talents? Well, I think the answer is obvious, really!

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