Drama schools? must be done/ maybe not?

  • User Deleted

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    hi

    I'm a professional actress who's worked on a range of things big and small.

    I've noticed though that there is an invisable brick wall i seem to hit whenever anyone asks in an audition if i've trained, i mention that i haven't ruled it out i've just been too busy so far. I'd like to know an actors perspective though, as i would like to get some training but can't i learn to harness my skills part time from 'The actor's centre'? is an acredited drama school imperative?

    • 24th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Hi, I am also scanning that Brick wall for any weaknesses and doorways....

    I have got a degree in Drama, an A level in Theatre Studies, am currently doing some training with Norwich Theatre Royal. Non of it is NCDT though. For some agencies and casting people all they care about is that you are NCDT Trained....I have worked with people who are, and to be honest they haven't been "all that" and I've worked with people who haven't done one jot of training and they have been brilliant.

    Hopefully these days casting people are a bit more open minded about a diversity of actors - diversity to include all those who could not afford drama school (he he like me!) and those who have got committments keeping them training (like children etc)

    I know it is one of the requirements for Spotlight (unless soemone knows if they have changed their minds, I haven't looked into applying for a while) but my agent didn't mind I wasn't NCDT trained.

    All the best to you

    Andie x

    • 15th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Of course there are any number of actors who haven't trained and are BRILLIANT - and any number who have and are C**P!! The list either way is endless, and the basic, intrinsic - what we call talent, I suppose - can't be 'trained'. BUT - I wouldn't be without my training, and in my day that meant an NCDT course as that's the only course I'd get funding for. But that's like any teaching/learning area - an NCDT approved course has to jump many hoops in order to protect those it is training, so I'd trust them with my money more than anyone else. But I wouldn't be without my PROFESSIONAL training - that's what I see it as; it earns me my professional stripes. There are many people out there who know the law inside out - but I'd only pay someone with a lawyer's training to handle my case! There are equally many people who know how the human body works - but I'd only trust a trained doctor with mine... I think that's where CD's and directors are coming from. They value those who've given up three years of their lives, who've worked all hours to pay for it and even bankrupted themselves in the process to hone their skills so that they turn up with more than everybody else's 'talent'; I can't put a finger on exactly what I had when I came out of three years at drama school that I didn't have when I went in - all I know is, it would have taken me a LOT longer than three years to acquire it if I'd just started working without it! And I met some great and inspiring people along the way...

    • 15th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    I am about to finish my 3 year training and i have to say i am glad that i've done it. Yes you can work without having trained but i personally feel this puts you at a distinct disadvantage to those who have trained. We work on every aspect continually for two years and now, in our third year, we are doing a range of shows with support from voice, movement etc. Yes, you can learn "on the job" but sometimes there isn't the time. It's all personal choice but for me i feel my training has been invaluable.

    • 15th Nov 2008
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  • Neill Scullard

    Actor

    Interesting debate. After school I did a three year vocational acting course, followed by 1 year at The Rep College, Reading. None of these are accredited, but I reckon I learnt as much with them as I would have done anywhere. Since leaving Rep I have not been out of work and quite honestly some of the people I have come across who have got accredited training are no better and no worse than I am. The best training, I think, is doing Rep. Learning one play whilst already performing another certainly shows your strengths and weaknesses. Each actor can really only be judged on their latest performance!

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    What about uni graduates who have done a degree for three years or actors who would like to do an MA Acting course? The average cost for fees alone is £10k plus living costs on top. Surely its how hard you work and an individuals experience?

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Has anyone bothered to find out what being 'accredited' means before commenting on it?

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • Lynsey Rebecca Garvey

    Actor

    I would have liked to have gone to drama school but it is so expensive. I think it does hold you back slightly. I left uni not really knowing how to market myself. And without no showcase.

    But now I think it's up to the actor and no matter how much training you have if you are not pro-active you will get not get where you wanna be. I think it's who you know and luck, in some cases! Being in the right place at the right time!

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Quite - you get what you pay for.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    At my drama school we performed to the 1st and 3rd years and staff throughout our second year and then at the end of the second year we did a mini tour and then on to Edinburgh so to say we don't have an audience until 3rd year is incorrect.

    My argument is, there is a reason people train. We all do it and more people need to realise that acting is a job. Like someone said about the dentist- i completely agree with you. Yes there are brilliant people at drama school and some not quite so good but we are all trained to a high standard, which has been acredited- for a reason. Acting is a job not a fun five minutes and much as a doctor would invest in their training and future so am i. I am, afterall, my own business- why wouldn't i want the best training that has been approved??

    I personally feel that people should only be allowed to register on here if they are on spotlight and NCDT trained but that's another argument and one that will spark another debate im sure...

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    A valid debate and I share your feelings entirely.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    This should stir you all up a bit, particularly the last two posters!

    I started acting in my twenties in Australia by talking and bullshitting my way into auditions and showing them I was good enough to get the part. I stuck it out for a few years getting work here and there but then decided it was too precarious a way to make a living and moved on to other things.

    A few years ago I decided to give acting another go and began by doing some amateur work and then progressing on to professional. I learned on the job. I am in the middle of a production right now and I have been getting fairly regular work for a while. I believe this is because I am good!!

    I have lots of life experience, I've lived and travelled all over the world and been in some dodgy circumstances in my time. I've led an interesting life, to say the least.

    I have seen lots of young actors fresh out of drama school and plenty who have been around a while and so many of them are absolutely crap and I wonder what the hell they did in those three years in drama school.

    I believe in this game the best actors are just born to act. Others need training!

    Many of the most successful actors never went near a drama school.

    A smashing actor who is having some real success is the ex-footballer, Vinny Jones. The bloke is a natural and probably doesn't even know there is such a thing as a drama school! Good on him.

    If you want to learn how to act, do some amdram and then try for a pro part and learn as you go by making a pratt of yourself, like I did, and watching older, more experienced actors do their stuff! Avoid the luvvies!

    Right, have at me!

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    I'm not making a snap descision at all- i stand by what i said!!

    The NCDT doesn't have a divine right, you're very right there but they ensure that the 22 schools that are acredited are working and training to an industry standard. Others may well do the same but ours is monitored and checked- a good thing surely and puts confidence into employers and people seeking training there.

    I am saying there are a lot of people filling up this profession who don't have a right to work because they're crap- and yes i mean that. I accept that there are people who can be brilliant with little or no training but this is very, very rare depsite what people think. The Russians take years to train, maybe we should adopt their work ethos and then see who still wants to act. I am not negating your trainin at all and you could be the best thing since sliced bread and i would support that but i think there should be a closer monitoring system on here who joins. After all, you only need a headshot and three "credits".

    I don't assume that anyone wants to work with me but i do know i have a right to audition promote myself. I've been doing this since knee high and have trained with a very good school. People might not want to work with me but i understand the industry i'm going into.

    I didn't dismiss you at all. I also said there's good and bad at my drama school. This happens in any job!

    I've never seen you so i wouldn't know if i'm better than you or not but i will say this, i know i'm a hell of a lot better than some people out there on stage and TV.

    You're right theatre is not about egos but i'm my own business and i'm in a profession where i have to look after myself in the best way possible and if that means sorting the crap from the good then i'd be prepared to do this. It's not about being arrogant it's about being realistic.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Thankyou to everyone who has voiced their opinions, they are all valid and I can see where you are coming from.

    However: I didn't intend to cause any arguements, I asked for peoples varied opinions, and 'varied' is definately what I got.

    I agree that NCDT schools can offer some amazing training if it is the right school for you, as can non NCDT schools. Like everyone on this page has mentioned I know people fresh out of Drama School still not even knowing how to project, and some whom I wish I had an ounce of their knowledge, everyone is different and I for one am on the fence about NCDT schools. I believe if the school is right for you, and you really want to go then you will move heaven and earth to find the fees and have the best training you will personally find.

    I am on Spotlight, Equity, have an agent and work enough professional jobs to feed me (sometimes haha) I work damn hard at my job as do others who don't have Drama Schools on their CV, but also those who do. I know this is a 'cut-throat' industry but lets not stereotype all trained/untrained actors.

    Thanks everyone for your comments, it really has helped.

    Sydnee

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Im saying filter the rubbish that's on here. My sister could join and she wouldn't have the first clue about acting.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    My point is all that i've said in previous posts.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Well well, here is little old me who hasn't done a drama degree of any kind ! How dare I even consider myself remotely worthy of trying to compete for roles with some of the highly trained thespians on this site. God I should never have dared lift my curious gaze from the pile of slop I was digging at the time in my dead end job. How dare I enjoy acting and my progression in this industry when I don't have my drama degree.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    Who have i "violently attacked"? I've just voiced my opinions, which you happen to disagree with. Something which your perfectly entitled to do.

    I have my opinions on aspects of the industry and workings on the industry, which aren't the same as yours! Fine but to say i've "violently attacked" someone is very far-fetched.

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    "You have described people who haven't done an NCDT course as 'crap' and suggested that they are removed from this site."

    No i didn't say that at all...So please don't try and manipulate what i was saying.

    The way i think is the way i think and i stand by that, sorry if you don't agree.

    • 16th Nov 2008
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  • User Deleted

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    people people calm down, we are all actors/actresses singers and dancers. surely we dont want to pigeon hole people on where they trained even some of the greats never recieved formal training. i myself have done very well for myself but could never stay for 3 years in a college. your born talented, courses just tame that and work on it. its your decision and i didnt have alot of money to do that and i dont mind, i will make it watever path i follow.

    now lets all create world peace lol

    • 16th Nov 2008
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