If you are nearing the end of your formal schooling and have been bitten by the acting bug, you may be wondering about your options for a career in acting. The first step, regardless of your prior experience, if any, is to consider acting classes.
But how do you know what to look for when choosing acting classes? What is the right acting program for you? It may help to crystallize what, exactly, you are interested in pursuing. Do you intend to make a career of acting, or are you merely interested in furthering your involvement with non-professional acting, such as community theater, or student films? If your goal is a serious career in acting, with the goal of becoming a working actor, you may wish to pursue a formal degree in acting.
Degree or No Degree?
What about a Masters of Fine Arts (MFA)? While those who intend to teach acting may wish to earn an MFA, this degree is generally not required to work in the field as an actor.
Keep in mind that a degree program will probably provide more flexibility in terms of what classes you may choose in order to fulfill graduation requirements. These programs are specialized, so your curriculum may be tightly prescribed and somewhat less flexible. Students from all walks of life, with all kinds of educational backgrounds, are eligible to apply.
Conservatory vs. Traditional College
Most major colleges and universities in the U.S. offer competent theater arts or drama programs. Alternatively, you may wish to attend conservatory courses. The latter focuses exclusively on arts programs. Think intensive voice training, musical instrument focus, or in our case, acting. While traditional colleges may require at least some history classes, for example, at a conservatory, these classes would typically be tied to the arts, e.g. the History of Theatre, etc.
What About In-Person vs. Online Learning?
Of course, these days many institutions offer a broad array of classes and learning experiences both online and in-person. This has never been more true than during the recent Covid pandemic. Schools, and students, have been forced to adapt to the constraints imposed by the need for social distance. Virtual learning is not always the same as in-person, but it offers many conveniences.
Online classes have always played a role in some students’ lives, for instance. Non-traditional and returning students, for example, maybe older individuals with existing careers. Often it’s all but impossible for these folks to attend in-person classes daily. While night school traditionally has been the solution for some, technology has allowed online learning options to improve and blossom.
There are both advantages and tradeoffs involved in either approach to learning. In-person classes obviously allow for close interpersonal interactions, while online classes may offer more flexibility in terms of scheduling convenience. Choose the option that fits best with your situation.
Regardless of what you are looking for, we’re sure we have a program perfect for you. Take a look at our New York and Los Angeles programs. If you still have questions, let us help you find the right program for you.