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UK Drama Schools - Less Well Known Alternatives

There are acting schools in the UK which offer quality acting courses but are less known to the majority of drama school auditionees.

In this article, we highlight six of these schools.

ALRA North

Located in Lancashire, ALRA (Academy of Live and Recorded Arts) was founded in 1979. It was the first UK drama school to offer training in live theatre, television, film and radio.

ALRA's main course is their BA (Hons) in Acting (3 Years). The acting course is intended for those determined to become professional actors working in the industry.

If paying privately, the course is £8685 per year. If paying by Student Loan, it's £3285. You can also receive DADA scholarships to cover some or most of the fees.

Cygnet School of Drama (Cygnet Training Theatre)

Cygnet is based in England and was founded in 1980. They have a three year practical and experimental professional acting course, as well as a one year foundation acting course that also includes aspects of technical theatre and stage management.

The cost to train at £2250 per term. There are 9 terms in total on their full time three year acting course. They also require a refundable deposit of £2250 to secure your place.

Acting Coach Scotland - Glasgow

Set in the busy and cosmopolitan Scottish city of Glasgow, Acting Coach Scotland is one of the UK's youngest drama schools, that's already attracting a high quality of candidate from across Europe.

ACS offers a full time one year acting course on their Professional Diploma in Stage and Screen Performance.

Although this course does offer a professional and SQA approved diploma, the focus is on the tailor made training that fits the acting industry.

The 1st half of the course is aimed at studio based training and the second half of the course is more on the job practical experience.

The course includes a full run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, acting in 3 professionally produced films and over 40 public performances.

The course looks for creative, motivated and committed individuals with original ideas and the drive to succeed. They accept students from all over the UK and Europe. Fluency in English is required.

The course costs £7200.

Oxford School of Drama - England

Founded over 30 years ago, The Oxford School of Drama has achieved phenomenal success in its time as it continues to dedicate itself to vocational training for actors.

OSD's full-time courses include:

Three-year Acting Course

This is a course based on the traditional values of classical acting adapted to suit the needs of contemporary media.


• 18 years and above

• Intellectual and emotional curiosity

Foundation Acting Course

This course introduces you to a range of performance methods and

techniques. It helps you to develop your creativity and establish the beginning of a technique that will be invaluable for the future.


• Eighteen years and above

• No academic requirements just passion

One Year Acting Course

It is made for those who have completed their academic studies and had some theater or film experience already. This is a course for students who are knowledgeable about the industry and are determined to succeed.

Manchester Metropolitan School of Theater - England

Located in the heart of Manchester, Manchester School of Theatre has a reputation for training professional actors for employment in theatre, film, TV, and radio.

Manchester School of Theater can trace its origins back to the mid-1960s, when a training program for professional actors was introduced to Manchester College of Art and Design, later becoming part of Manchester Polytechnic in 1970 and Manchester Metropolitan University in 1992.

Manchester school of Theater Full-time Courses include:

BA (Hons) Acting Course (3 years)

This course provides the necessary and skills required to train as a professional actor working on stage and screen. The course also aims to nurture instinctive ability in a person while enabling you to recognize particular strengths and abilities.


• 112 points at A2 or equivalent

• GCSE English Language at grade C or grade 4. Functional Skills may be considered

• Pass Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject with a minimum 112 UCAS Tariff Points

• International Baccalaureate 26 Points

For International Students

• A minimum IELTS score of 6.0 with element above 5.5 is required.