More and more young people perceive the glamorous life of an actor as a dream career, but one that is notoriously expensive and difficult to train for. Besides, the truth is, no matter how much innate talent actors may possess, they've all perfected their abilities through sheer hard work and dedication to their craft.

Truth is there is no sure route in, and nowadays courses range from the more theoretical options available from most universities to the practical options at specialized drama schools.  If you are considering drama training, the cost of acting classes might be a major consideration in your choice.

Find the right acting school for you.
Find the right acting school for you. Source: Martin Lopez,Pexels

Why Enroll in an Acting School?

Acting school is perfect for beginners or those with no experience in the acting world. Acting school is going to teach you everything you need to know about becoming an actor and how to succeed after school. Acting school is also going to give you the confidence you need in yourself to apply for auditions and become a serious actor. We've all heard the stories of people walking on to auditions with zero acting experience, then they get the part. This isn't the case for most actors. You need to be able to have the skills to set yourself apart from the rest. The acting skills you'll gain will continue to help you throughout your career. We'll list a few reasons you should consider acting school.

Reasons to Go to Acting School:

Business - Acting schools teach you the skills you need to become an actor and they teach you the business side of being an actor. A lot of schools and classes are implementing this side of acting in their programs. Students need to learn how to effectively get auditions and how to succeed as an actor. It's not all about your acting skills.

Experience - Being a new actor you might have no experience in the acting world. You'll gain the experience you need for when you have a real audition or role to play. You can know what to expect and be ready.

Confidence - Confidence and acting go hand and hand. You can't be unconfident and be an actor, it doesn't work. Actors need to feel confident on stage or on camera. If you don't feel confident you won't be able to perform your best. Your acting school will prepare you so you'll be able to feel confident.

Connections - At acting schools, a lot of your teachers will have connections into the acting world. They can help you find acting roles or connect you with the right people to help your acting career. In acting school, you're also going to be able to make friends. It can be hard working as an actor. It'll be good to have people that understand what your going through.

What's the Difference Between Acting Schools and Acting Classes?

As a new actor, you're going to hear acting schools and acting classes often. They may offer the same thing, but they're both different. Enrolling in either of them is going to help with your acting career. As an actor, you need to have a number of skills to be successful as an actor. For starters, there are auditions, memoirs, script readings and voice techniques just to name a few. Acting schools offer more than acting classes. In school, you're going to learn everything you need to know about acting from start to finish. This is why acting schools are good for beginners because you can learn so much.

Acting classes can teach you specific acting skills. Let's say you needed help on your auditions, you could find an acting class that only teaches auditions. Acting classes are those with acting experience that want to improve in certain areas. Yes, both actors could take one or the other but as a new actor, you want to be able to learn everything you can. If your an experienced actor you don't need to spend months or years trying to improve your acting skills.

Here, we take a look at some of the top conservatories and drama schools throughout the world and the celebrated stars of stage and screen they have produced.

The bottom line is - and you quite certainly already know it - if you attend one of these highly competitive drama schools you're well on the road to fame and fortune...

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Where are the top drama schools in the world?
“Most of the truly remarkable experiences I've had in theatre have filled me with uncertainty and disorientation”
― Anne Bogart

Top Acting Schools in America

Julliard, New York City

Juilliard won't pamper you, but it may make you famous. Kevin Spacey counts the story that he complained about tough treatment by a teacher who compared his voice to a frayed rope. "She said, 'You're an idiot. Don't you realize that I'm the hardest on you because I think you're the most talented, but I also know you're the laziest?' And she was right." Spacey admits it: he got his act together at Juilliard.

Graduates emerge with brilliant language skills, script savvy and thick skins (thus well prepared for the special – sometimes harsh- acting world). Note that Juilliard just added a $10 million grant funding full tuition and stipends for top students. Notable alumni include Jessica Chastain, Laura Linney, Viola Davis, Patti LuPone, Kelsey Grammer, Robin Williams

Tisch School of the Arts, New York City

Tisch's BFA program got high marks from the CSA, and its MFAs are even more appreciated. According to CSA member Monika Mikkelsen, "They have a power city to draw from, an acting school, directors, writers and filmmaking programs, and students are well-rounded and clear on the very hard course of life they have chosen for themselves."

Felicity Huffman said that if it weren't for NYU, she might not have had a career. Nor would Alec Baldwin or Philip Seymour Hoffman?

Yale School of Drama, New Haven, Conn

At Yale, students are not in an ivory tower. They're at the core stage of the national theatre world. Since 2002, the Yale Rep has produced more than 20 premieres of original dramatic works, including two Pulitzer finalists. "They feel like an elite corps of acting engineers: precise, well-read and eerily calm," says one Casting Society member. "You will see, for instance, that 13 Tony Award nominees this year are graduates of the school and/or current members of the faculty."

Famous alumni include Meryl Streep, Paul Newman, Sigourney Weaver, Angela Bassett, Patricia Clarkson, Frances McDormand and Paul Giamatti.

ACT, San Francisco

The first time Annette Bening became a star was at ACT's theatre, which has earned a Tony and welcomed 7 million patrons. Its kid's program produced Winona Ryder and Nicolas Cage. The school also coached and taught Denzel Washington and Delroy Lindo

Acting schools help increase your acting knowledge.
Acting schools help increase your acting knowledge. Source: Stephan Muller, Pexels

Top Acting Schools in Canada

Vancouver Film School

One of the best known acting school in Canada is the Vancouver Film School. They've had a long list of alumni that have gone on to do some amazing work. They offer a 4-month diploma acting program that teaches students everything they need to know. They have a full team of qualified teachers that are ready to take you to the next level.

Toronto Academy of Acting

They are another world-renowned school right in Toronto. They have a prestigious acting school that is recognized as one of the best. The school has direct access to a lot of film projects that happen all over Canada. Toronto Academy of Acting offers a number of different courses for people wanting to become actors.

Top Acting Schools in the UK

Here are some of the most prestigious acting schools in the UK.

London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, London

Open since 1861, LAMDA sends lots of grads across the pond. It has trained Chris O'Dowd, John Lithgow, Jim Broadbent and Donald Sutherland.

Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, London

RADA’s main asset is it doesn't just ‘dump’ its students on the job market (jungle), it assigns each grad at least two RADA 'buddies'  (pros with at least three years of experience) as mentors to guide them... Notable alumni include Clive Owen, Diana Rigg, Tom Wilkinson, Peter O'Toole and Sir Anthony Hopkins.

Theatre School Performance World
"Find your authentic voice, become vulnerable, and then put yourself out there."— Meredith Brooks (source: Unsplash)

Find other acting classes in London and learn the best stage acting techniques.

Top Acting Schools in Australia

National Institute of Dramatic Arts, Kensington

Only 4 percent pass auditions and enter NIDA. "As things have gotten more international, I always make sure that I know about the graduating classes in Australia," says CSA member Margery Simkin, who cast Pacific Rim. Well-known alumni include the famous Baz Luhrmann, Mel Gibson, Cate Blanchett, Hugo Weaving, and Judy Davis.

Western Australia Academy of Performing Arts

They are one of the top 5 acting schools in Australia. The school only brings on 18 students per semester allowing them to have a personalized learning plan. It's a highly competitive acting school to gain entrance in. The school gives students the opportunity to become great at what they do with their professional staff and state of the art facilities. They put on more than 300 shows per year giving students the experience and practice they need to make it as an actor.

Top Acting Schools in France and Spain

Cours Florent, Paris

The Cours Florent is a private French Drama school in Paris created in 1967 by François Florent. The school is located on three nearby sites in the 19th arrondissement of Paris. The Cours Florent is known as one of France's most prestigious schools, offering a three-year program to learn acting as well as theatre classes for children and teenagers.

If you are looking for a drama school in France, this should be your first choice. You would then be following the path of famous actors such as Isabelle Adjani, Yvan Attal, Daniel Auteuil or Guillaume Canet.

Royal School for Performing Arts, Madrid

Welcome to the RESAD, Spain’s Royal School for Dramatic Arts, the oldest Spanish theatre school and one of the most prestigious in Europe. Since 1831 the RESAD has trained professionals in the world of theatre through a specialized educational program and personalized teaching approach enabling students to excel in all theatrical areas and disciplines.

This focus is not only technical but also artistic and philosophical. A faculty of more than 70 professors and a prime location in the centre of Madrid near the Retiro Park makes the RESAD an excellent place to study.

Looking for something closer to home? Try acting classes in Manchester for drama courses near you.

Top Acting Schools in India

National School of Drama, India

The National School of Drama is one of its kind in India. It was created by Sangeet Natak Akademi and later became an independent entity. The training it offers is rather intense and is based on a thorough, comprehensive, carefully planned syllabus that covers every aspect of theatre and in which theory is related to practice. For instance, as part of their training, students are asked to produce plays and perform them before a large public.

Film and Television Institute of India

They offer a great 2-year acting diploma program for its students. That's complied of great acting teachers. The Film and Television Institute of India has collaborations all over the world with different film programs. This can help aspiring actors make the transition from India to other parts of the world. They have a full team of industry professionals that want to help their students succeed.

Are you ready to be on camera? Join an acting school to start your career.
Are you ready to be on camera? Join an acting school to start your career. Source: Bruno Massao, Pexels

Top Acting Schools in Africa

Waterfront Theatre School, Cape Town

Affectionately known as South Africa’s 'Fame School' for the performing arts, The Waterfront Theatre College has earned a reputation for creating the 'triple threat' - people who can sing, dance and act. Founded by South African Theatre TV legends Keith Galloway and Delia Sainsbury in 1992, The Waterfront Theatre College offers a unique opportunity to study varied aspects of the performing arts under one roof.

The school’s intimate environment and investment in each student ensure that individual needs are supported and personal goals aligned with future objectives.

African Academy of Cinematic Arts

They are another great acting school located in South Africa. AACA offers each of the students a highly hands-on approach to learning as well as offering a mentorship program. They make the transition of the classroom to the real-world seamless. They have a full team of qualified teachers that are ready to help you gain the skills you need.

A Few Tips to Boost your Chances of Succeeding in the Acting World (No Matter Where you Study)

The acting world can seem daunting after you finish school. Now is the time you have to take action and start working. You'll need to be able to find auditions as an actor. Auditions are going to be the reason for finding paying acting jobs, where do you find them? This can be a hard question to answer on your own, so we'll give you a few places you can find your next audition.

Location

Moving to a location where the film industry is prevalent is going to increase your chances of becoming an actor. If you look at Hollywood you're going to have more opportunities there to work as an actor. There are always films or television shows being filmed so you'll have more opportunities for auditions. We're not saying move to Hollywood. Each country has a city where the film industry is bigger. For instance, in Canada this would be Toronto or Vancouver. Location isn't everything as an actor but it can help.

Work with an Agency

Agencies are a great way to find you auditions or even can get you direct parts for roles. Agencies do all the work for you. It's going to save you a lot of time. You won't have to go around searching for auditions all the time. Your agency is also going to find auditions that are right for you. They'll be able to match your skill set so you know you're the right person for the job. Working with an agency does have a downside. They usually take part of your wage once you get the part. This shouldn't be seen as a big issue because there getting the audition for you. Although, it's something you need to consider.

Word of Mouth

Another popular way of finding auditions is word of mouth. After school, you're going to have a list of contacts in the industry you reach out to and ask around. It's going to be impossible for you to know what's going on all the time so having people you can ask about auditions is good to have. You can also ask other actors about the newest auditions.

Other Tips to Consider:

  • Get experience outside of school: seek out small playhouses and theatres in the local area and audition for various roles. Even if it’s as one of the extras, it will experience behind the curtain, which is what matters as acting skills continue to be honed.
  • Practice! Act as much as possible, in as many roles as possible. Build up a résumé filled with a variety of performances, including theatre productions, commercials, working as an extra, music videos and anything else that gets attention.
  • Hire an agent as soon as possible: when a bit of momentum starts to build, it’s time to call in some help. An experienced agent can help actors succeed by offering a huge network of contacts, helping them avoid rookie mistakes and getting auditions that might not be available otherwise. Though not all actors will have an agent, those who want to work with the largest theatre or movie companies will need to have one.
Acting School Passion Students
“Actors and actresses make magic,' I said. 'They make things happen on the stage; they invent; they create.”
― Anne Rice (Source: Unsplash)

Start Acting Today!

We hope this is useful. Carry on searching and examining the different options whilst thinking hard about what you want from your degree. Do keep in mind that courses are not for the faint-hearted, as you may find you're putting in 35-hour weeks in classes. The rewards at the end of it all, however, should be well worth the hard work!

If you are interested in acting classes Superprof has lots of acting coaches that are ready to help you gain the skills you need. They have the experience and knowledge to teach you the best way possible. Superprof offers classes online and in-person giving you the freedom and flexibility to learn acting when you want to learn.

Start learning acting today!

Name of SchoolLocationFamous Alumni
The Juilliard SchoolNew YorkKevin Spacey
Tisch School of the ArtsNew YorkFelicity Huffman,Alec Baldwin
Yale School of DramaNew Haven, ConnecticutMeryl Streep, Paul Newman
American Conservatory TheatreSan FranciscoNicolas Cage
London Academy of Music and Dramatic ArtsLondonDonald Sutherland, John Lithgow, Jim Broadbent, Swoosie Kurtz and Brian Cox
Royal Academy of Dramatic ArtsLondonAnthony Hopkins, Mike Leigh, Peter O’Toole
National Institute of Dramatic ArtsKensington, AustraliaBaz Luhrmann, Mel Gibson, Cate Blanchett, Hugo Weaving, Judy Davis
Cours FlorentParisGuillaume Canet, Daniel Auteuil, Isabelle Adjani
Royal School for Performing ArtsMadridMonica Cruz
National School of DramaIndiaPriyanka Chopra
Waterfront Theatre SchoolCape TownRoxanne Hayward

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Chester

You can usually find me writing at a cafe sipping on coffee or working out at the gym. I fell in love with writing a few years ago and have never looked back. I love being able to share my words with the world.