Want to go to Drama school! But how? Watch
Basically, I'm in my 3rd year at a top 10 university studying English Literature. If everything goes to plan I'll be graduating with a first, as I've kept a high average of 1sts in my modules throughout my first and second year.
However, my love for drama and theatre has also crept up on me whilst at university, and its ideally the career path I'd like to go in. I'm the present of a drama society at my university and involved in a choir society, a musical theatre social and also a film society.
My dilemma is that I don't know what side of drama I want to go in. I've always love acting and its the one I have most experience in. Ive also done quite a lot of writing, having several of my short plays acted in at my uni and I'd love to carry on doing playwrighting in the future. However, in this last year I've also had the opportunity to direct a lot, and I think its fair to say I've caught the bug. So I'm a bit stuck as what to apply for in terms of an MA. (I'm considering taking a year out before I do this, by the way, so I can get some theatre experience).
On the one hand I can just do another BA but this time in acting, and I'm thinking of applying to the following programmes:
BA Acting at RADA
BA Acting at Central
BA Acting at LAMDA
BA Acting at Guildhall
BA Acting at Oxford School of Drama
BA Acting at Drama Centre London
BA Acting at Bristol Old Vic
However, the problem with this option is finding the funding as I'll have already done a BA and therefore not be able to get Student Finance. I'm in no way rich. I come from a predominantly working class background. Also, it only involves only acting and, like I mentioned earlier, I'm also very interesting in the writing and acting side of drama.
I've also thought about applying straight to an MA in Acting. I was thinking of applying to the following MAs in straight acting:
MA Acting at Central
1 year Foundation Degree for postgrads at LAMDA
MA Acting at Drama Centre London
MA Theatre Lab at RADA
MA Acting at Guildhall (3 Years)
FdA Acting at Bristol Old Vic
Again, I'm concerned that these are just focused on acting and not the 'behind the scenes.' Furthermore, as I haven't got a degree in Acting I have less of a chance of getting in.
Therefore I've also considered doing an MA in either Directing or writing or both:
MA Theatre Studies at Central
MA Dramatic Writing at Drama Centre London
MA Writing, Directing and Performance at York
MA Directing at RADA
MA Theatre and Performance Studies at KCL
MA (Theatre) Directing at Royal Holloway
MA Playwrighting at Royal Holloway
On the other hand I've also thought about just applying to a lot of agents and trying to get into acting that way.
Help anyone?! What can I do?
With any MA that you do though, nothing can stop you going into Acting even without an MA, like you say, you can contact agents etc, which I think you should definitely do despite which kind of course you decide to pursue.
Another BA would be tricky.. I can only imagine the financial complications! But if you really want a career in the world of acting/theatre/drama, you sound like you've already got a brilliant foundation for that - your English degree can be used in any way you wish and I think whatever path you choose you'll be able to get where you want to be through a combination of possible further study and acting and writing experience.
So maybe look through all those courses, shortlist, then look again even closer and see which ones really stand out so you can find a course you'll be really passionate about. I do think the York MA sounds great for what you want to do, but then directing would be really flexible as well, because then you can still find opportunities to act alongside it, but you'll also have the kind of "backstage" skills and leadership and knowledge necessary for directing or playwrighting. Directing will cover all the practical as well as written aspects of theatre/acting really in depth so maybe that would be a good option too.
Anyway, that's just my opinion, good luck with choosing a course and good luck with your career!!
I also wouldn't advise doing another BA in acting, I would probably do an MA in Acting, although it is very focused on acting it will still develop your skills in writing and directing, many famous writers and directors went to drama school to do acting, so the possibilities aren't as limited as you'd think
Hope this helps