When people think about making it as an actor in the U.K. they often think of London. While the capital has plenty of prestigious places that train actors (the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art being one example that springs to mind) you don’t have to live in the South to have access to great drama schools or theatre companies.
If you live in Leeds or the wider Yorkshire area, there are lots of different types of acting classes available to you. So you don’t need to move to London to make it as an actor!
Whether you want to:
- Develop your skills as a scriptwriter;
- Learn more about specific acting techniques such as method acting or the Stanislavsky method;
- Take acting classes with a group of like-minded individuals; or
- Improve your audition technique,
There’s a class out there in Leeds waiting for you! This article takes a look at some acting courses available in Leeds that you might want to try out, from group-based acting classes to private acting lessons with a dedicated acting tutor.
Find The Perfect Acting Coach In Leeds
Whether you’re a total newcomer to the world of acting, or you already have some experience under your belt, it’s important to find an acting class that is right for you. More often than not, this means finding a drama class that is designed for people who have a similar level of acting ability to you.
After all, if you’ve already landed some TV commercials or small roles in TV series, you might not get many benefits from going to a drama class designed for absolute beginners!
A lot of drama schools acknowledge that there can be a big discrepancy in acting ability among their students and as a result, lots of schools now offer classes that are tailored for specific ability ranges.
So, complete newcomers to acting who want to learn the basics, such as:
- Developing textual awareness;
- Specific acting techniques such as method or improvisation; or
- How the industry operates,
Are often put in a class together, while more experienced actors work together in other workshops to try and become even better, whether that’s in their auditioning technique, their sight-reading skills, or their on-camera work.
The Yorkshire Academy of Film and Television Acting in Leeds is just one of many establishments that offer classes based on ability level. For example, there are classes available for both beginners as well as intermediate-advanced actors. Equally, the IPM Acting Academy offers courses from beginner to advanced.
So, by having a look around at different acting schools and their offerings, you should be able to find a class that’s right for you and your ability level.
It’s Worth Doing Your Research
Of course, not all acting classes are created equal, so it’s worth doing some research before booking your space on an upcoming course.
One way to see if a class is right for you is to read previous attendees’ reviews of the course, or even physically speak to someone who went on the course. Their honest opinions should shed some light on whether the course would appeal to you.
Another way to gauge whether an acting class would suit you is to find out more about the content of the course. Does the course concentrate on acting for TV and film roles, for example, or is it more geared towards preparing you for roles in the theatre? Ultimately, you should try and make sure that any drama class is aligned with where your interests and focus lie.
Finally, try to find out what kind of teachers the drama school employs, as tutors that have practical knowledge and experience of the industry can help you get ahead in your acting ambitions.
The Yorkshire Academy of Film and Television Acting, for example, states that their teachers “hold recognised qualifications in acting” and “are experienced screen actors”.
ActUpNorth also boasts a wide selection of acting tutors, who have amassed several credits in television, film, commercials, and theatre productions, from Hollyoaks, to The Play That Killed Me and Misfits, to name a few.
Consider Looking Into Age Specific Classes
Another factor to take into account when looking for acting classes in Leeds is the fact that a lot of drama schools offer classes based on age.
So, for example, school-age pupils might be taught together, while adults are given their separate classes.
The IPM Acting Academy, for example, offers classes for infants, kids, teens, and adults, while also offering private acting sessions. Equally, The Yorkshire School of Acting offers acting classes for both children and adults.
So, if you want to attend an adults-only class or another age-specific class, it’s worth double checking the course specification before you book to make sure you’ve found the right class for you.
Hone Your Craft With A Personalised Acting Class
As the saying goes, practice makes perfect. Whether you’re already a seasoned actor, or just starting and looking to learn the latest acting techniques, it’s always a good idea to think about getting extra practice to improve your acting skills.
For instance, if you are committed to being great at improv, one of the best ways you can become better at improvisation is to be put in situations where you need to use the improvisation skills you’ve learned.
This might mean:
- Going to a dedicated acting class where you can practice improv, either individually or as part of a group;
- Watching famous improv actors, such as Ryan Reynolds or Melissa McCarthy, for tips on how you could improve yourself;
- Attending comedy club nights where you can perform improv comedy in front of an audience;
- Getting extra training to help you feel more comfortable when performing.
One other way you can improve your acting skills, whether that’s your sight reading, audition technique, or your script analysis, is to consider having private acting lessons.
Private acting lessons can be a great way to improve as an actor because they should allow you more dedicated time to improve in the areas you want to focus on most. So, for example, if you’re comfortable with acting theories, but still struggle with character and emotion, a private acting class may help you further develop your understanding of these areas and become a better actor as a result.
Private acting lessons are available at a variety of drama schools. IPM Acting Academy in Leeds, for example, offers half-hour private sessions for those keen to hone their abilities.
Equally, you can find private acting classes through online tutoring sites such as Superprof. Whether you’re looking for individual or group acting lessons, you can find tutors in Leeds that can help you improve as an actor. Superprof tutors can either come and visit you in person to help you work on a particular area, such as the Meisner technique, or they can help you remotely via online only sessions.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that private tutoring sessions don’t have to be one-to-one. If you prefer working in a group, or what to practice your sight reading in group scenes, private group tutoring sessions can be a great idea.
Keep Costs In Mind
Finally, when looking for acting classes in Leeds, it may be worth thinking about how much you’re willing to spend on acting tuition.
After all, you could find the best acting course in the world, but if you can’t afford to go to it, it will be of little use to you.
The price of drama tuition varies from drama school to drama school, as does the length of sessions. Some schools, for example, offer one-day masterclasses, while others offer longer-term courses that run over many weeks.
ActUpNorth, for instance, asks for a minimum study commitment of one term, which tends to last between 12 and 16 weeks, with classes usually running for around 2 hours. The Yorkshire Academy of Film and Television Acting, on the other hand, offers 90-minute, 60-minute, and drop-in classes.
So, when deciding on an acting course, there are several factors to keep in mind when deciding which class will give you the most value for your money.
As a general rule of thumb, if you consider the following issues before booking your first class, you should be able to decide on a course that’s right for you:
- Is the course well-regarded;
- Are the tutors qualified?;
- Can I afford the classes?;
- Do the classes cover the topics I want to learn more about?;
- Can these classes make me a better actor?; and
- Would I be better off having private or one on one tutoring?
And remember, if you are struggling to find a drama class that’s right for you, or you want to spend extra time outside of class developing your acting talents, you can also consider using a private tutor such as an acting tutor from Superprof to help you fine-tune your abilities as an actor.
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