Which has the better reputation: ALRA or Drama Studio London?

  • David Pitt

    Actor

    Hello everyone,

    I'm applying for drama schools at the moment and the one thing I keep hearing is that you should investigate a school's reputation.

    So, I was wondering if any of you lovely people could help me out?

    I'm interested specifically in the reputation of the One Year Course at both ALRA and Drama Studio London. The focus on employability and multimedia training at both have me tempted, but I was wondering if one is definitively considered 'better' than the other?

    I've already had four years at university and can only afford one year of training, so the 2/3 year options at both aren't really viable.

    Any thoughts, comments or experiences would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you!

    • 23rd Apr 2013
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  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    I know 3 people who went to DSL. 2 did the 1 year and 1 did the 2 year.

    The 2 yr graduate has had a paid job in a touring play, the other 2 have not had anything major and not paid. Read into that what you will but sometimes a 2yr is more substantial however having a degree myself i undestand the financial problems.

    If you want to do film, tv work aswell as stage id recommend ALRA as they focus on this. Its a drama school im interested in going too.

    Good luck!

    • 20th Apr 2013
    • 1
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Hi david.

    LAMDA

    GUILDHALL

    RADA are still collectively known as the 'top 3 ' by industry professionals.

    Out of these -Lamda does a 1yr. Id look into that. i believe benedict cumberbatch graduated from it.

    However,obviously what graduates go onto from a 'good'school varies.some will be movie stars & some will always waitress so judging by alumni isnt always the best call. Its whatever one you gel & feel right at.

    Out of those two i always thought drama studio had the best rep - but i graduated 2005 so started applying in 2001! Reputations may have changed since then.

    Whichever one you choose -expect a tough ride. Drama school aint easy & if yourenot one for sharing personal experiences & like dredgingstuff up, you may struggle.

    Lot of fun too though!

    Good luck!

    Em x

    • 20th Apr 2013
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  • Guy Press

    Actor

    David there really is no Top 3 in Industry eyes - this is acting urban legend!

    From year to year Schools go up and down and the Industry Pro recognises this. As a grad of the National Film & Television School (NFTS) All the top directors who tutor there and have passed through the doors will tell you this.

    The Big traditional (London Centric) named schools are RADA, Central, Guildhall, E15, Drama Centre, (the departed Webber D) Drama Studio,Rose Bru, LAMDA... but to be honest the output varies from year to year! In the late 80's through to mid 90's RADA had very poor reputation!

    Judge them for yourself and listen to what grads are doing and talk them directly that will inform you more! Most importantly it has to be the right School for you!!

    • 20th Apr 2013
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  • Dan Gregory

    Actor

    I agree with Guy. Things change. In 1966 Peter Layton created Drama Studio which was great when friends of mine went there.

    I left Goldsmiths that year and Rose Bruford had a terrible reputation at that time.

    They both have good reputations now.

    The best thing to do is see whether you can audit some classes. See whether it suits you, but so much depends on the intake of the year you are in,

    • 20th Apr 2013
    • 4
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Yep - I agree with the above two about talking to graduates & that the most important thing is the school you feel most comfortable at.

    Guy - I cant speak for what LFS 'top directors' say, im only going by a handful of casting directors opinions.

    Bur of course they would big up the school of the actor they are talking too! x

    • 20th Apr 2013
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  • Josie Bloom

    Actor

    Hi there

    I went to ALRA and did the 3 year course and would definitely recommend the shool, particularly the voice department. The TV/film and radio classes are excellent and you get to work with visiting working directors too. Everyone I know who did the one year course at ALRA have all highly recommended it, though the training is jam packed because there is so much to cram in in such a short time, so don't expect to get any sleep!

    The best advice I can give is that the school has to feel right for you - not all the schools suit everyone - horses for courses and all that, and only you can know what suits you.

    I would recommend going to the open days and maybe even contacting the schools directly, ask if you can observe some of the classes on a 'normal day' - I know at ALRA prospective students have done that in the past. Talk to the students and the staff, see what the atmosphere is like and how it makes you feel. Go with your gut!

    Best of luck and I'm sure you will make the right decision - the right decision for you!

    x

    • 23rd Apr 2013
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  • Josie Bloom

    Actor

    Obviously by 'shool' I mean school...doh!

    • 23rd Apr 2013
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  • Will Harrison-Wallace

    Actor

    So The original question is which school has the better reputation ALRA or Drama Studio? - You're probably better off asking Cds, but that's an interesting question for me as these 2 were amongst the schools that offered me a place on the 1 year 2009-10 intake and funnily enough in the end I narrowed my choice down to these 2. I spoke to ex students of both...but obviously they could only really tell me what their experience of one particular school was like - in all cases very positive. I went to both the open days and spoke to current students. I looked up alumni and on balance considered there was very little to choose between them. In the end for me I have to be honest a large part of my decision came down to the commute - 10 mins to ALRA and about 75 mins to DSL. It may sound a small consideration but it helped convince me ALRA was the right choice. I had a great year, as Josie says there's a great voice dept and I found many positives at the school.

    Good Luck with whichever you choose and as I said at the start of this ramble your best bet is asking CDs and agents their opinion....

    Will

    • 23rd Apr 2013
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