Why study at GSA
Guildford School of Acting is one of the UK’s leading accredited drama schools, providing dedicated conservatoire training within a purpose-built environment on the University of Surrey campus.
We are ranked 3rd in the UK for dance, drama and cinematics in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024, and 5th in the UK for drama and dance in the Guardian University Guide 2024. We were shortlisted for University of the Year in The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023.
Our innovative Acting MFA trains future generations of internationally renowned performers and teachers.
Delivered by Guildford School of Acting (GSA), one of the most highly regarded theatre schools in the UK, this course will provide you with acclaimed actor training alongside a sterling reputation and excellent industry links.
This unique course is led by expert teachers with extensive first-hand experience in the professional theatre sector in both the UK and internationally.
We keep our cohorts small to ensure you get personal attention and contact from our expert teachers, who have extensive first-hand experience in professional theatre in the UK and internationally.
Our campus boasts great transport links to London, so you’ll benefit from GSA’s close proximity to the heart of UK theatre in London’s West End.
What you will study
Our innovative Acting MFA builds on the success of GSA’s current postgraduate course by extending the intensive training currently offered on our one-year Acting MA.
Our Acting MFA is highly selective and intensive. You’ll train over two years, taking classes in acting for stage and screen, voice, and movement, exploring a wide range of theatre traditions and performance styles in rehearsal projects and public productions, and participating in professional development events and masterclasses. The second year of the programme includes mentored opportunities for students to develop their own teaching practice and creative work. Your performance opportunities will include a short film project, a public production, and an industry digital showcase.
Please be aware: the course content and modules listed for this course are subject to change for the 2024/25 academic year, whilst we undertake a curriculum design review. Please contact the programme leader if you have any queries about the course.
Our MFA in Acting will provide graduates with:
- The ability to employ a broad range of acting knowledge and skills in the creation and presentation of roles
- The ability to perform in plays of various types and from various periods
- The acquisition of advanced understanding and capabilities in voice and speech, movement, and play analysis
- A working knowledge of historical, critical, and theoretical content and the ways they inform playwriting and dramatic writing, the creation of roles, and other aspects of production
The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:
Knowledge and understanding
- An experiential and theoretical knowledge of key practical acting methodologies
- An advanced understanding, which will inform ongoing skill attainment, of the physical and vocal techniques required to maintain an expressive body and the optimum functionality of the voice
- A critical understanding of key theoretical and methodological developments in the practice of acting
- An advanced understanding, which will inform ongoing skill attainment, of the application of technique to differing theatrical forms, styles, genres and historical contexts
- A comprehensive understanding of current industry practice
- Recognise, interpret and contextualise approaches to performance texts
- Identify and develop an individual methodological approach to rehearsal
- Select vocal and physical techniques appropriate to voice, person and situation
- Recognise and respond appropriately to the demands of different performance media
- Critically analyse and reflect on their own and others’ practice
Professional practical skills
- Successfully apply integrated vocal and psycho-physical techniques to the practice of acting in differing media
- Sustain and develop an effective and creative individual rehearsal process
- Demonstrate creative and imaginative work in performance
- Contribute effective and appropriate practices and concepts to an ensemble process
- Demonstrate evidence of practical research and effective preparation for entry into the current performance industry
- Be disciplined and consistent in a professional context
- Conduct themselves constructively, positively, and sensitively towards others
- Able to lead and collaborate as part of the team on practical and research projects
- Communicate effectively and at an advanced level in both verbal and written form
- Seek out, critique, and employ information appropriately
- Recognise and develop commercial and artistic career opportunities
To view the entry requirements please click here
For more audition information please visit AUDITIONS & INTERVIEWS
GSA International Auditions in Philadelphia, USA
We are excited to announce we will be holding in-person auditions this year in Philadelphia. This will be open to all GSA applicants. If you are applying for BA Acting or BA Musical Theatre and would like to audition in Philadelphia, you must have completed the first round video audition stage, and to have been invited to a recall audition.
The auditions will take place on 22 January 2024 in Philadelphia. Venue TBC
In order to be invited to this audition, we must receive your application no later than Friday 5 January 2024. For BA Musical Theatre and BA Acting applications, we must receive your UCAS application by Friday 3 November 2023. The deadline to submit first-round videos will be Friday 1 December 2023.
Please note: the above only applies to applicants interested in auditioning in Philadelphia, USA.
Thinking of continuing your education at Surrey? As an alumnus of Surrey, you may be eligible for a ten per cent discount on our taught Masters programme fees.
We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.
In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.
Learn more about opportunities that might be available for this particular programme by using our student exchanges search tool.
Our Admissions Policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students.
Steps to Postgraduate Study is an official, independent guide for anyone considering a taught postgraduate course. The guide is produced by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, the Scottish Funding Council and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland.
Our graduates have an unrivalled employment record in West End shows, national tours, television, radio and film. Our very distinguished alumni include performers such as:
- Brenda Blethyn OBE
- Bill Nighy
- Ella Balinska
- Owen Teale
- Celia Imrie
- Jonjo O’Neill
- Alexandra Mardell
- Kobna Holdbrook-Smith MBE
- Danielle Fiamanya
- Tam Mutu
- Caroline Sheen
- Rob Kazinsky
- Jade Anouka
- Chris Geere
- Emma Barton
- Justin Fletcher MBE
- T'Nia Miller
- Stephen Carlile
- Maiya Quansah-Breed
- Grace Mouat
- Bronagh Waugh
Our alumni have also secured employment in numerous regional theatres, opera and ballet companies, arts venues, scenic construction and prop-making companies, corporate events and lighting, sound and video hire companies, as well as attaining management and creative production roles for major venues and production companies including the Really Useful Group, Cameron Mackintosh Ltd, the National Theatre, the BBC, the Royal Albert Hall, Birmingham Symphony Hall, ATG Theatres and PRG Dubai. Other career paths have included teaching and outreach work.