Apply Now! 9 Intensive Programs for College Students and Professional Actors

Written by Ashleigh Gardner

April 11, 2018

If you’re a college theatre student or professional actor, you may be looking for ways to up your game with training. Lucky for you, we’ve got some details on some of the best acting intensives from the US and UK. Check out each school’s/studio’s website for more details.

Shakespeare & Company (Lenox, MA)

Price range: $325 – $4,750

From the website: “Through the Center for Actor Training, Shakespeare & Company’s performance artists, education artists, and artist-managers develop a common artistic vocabulary and coherent approach to performing Shakespeare that provides a solid foundation for their work. Actors, directors, writers, and teachers from all over the world come to work with the Company’s faculty to train not only their voices and their bodies with a daily regimen of demanding classes, but also to delve deeply into their own imaginations, intellects, and emotional lives. Shakespeare & Company’s curriculum is internationally recognized as a deeply effective training experience for actors who aspire to bring their talent, intuition, and spirit to a higher level.”

Shakespeare & Company offers two-month, one-month, and weekend intensive courses along with specialized workshops.


Atlantic Acting School (New York, NY)

Price: $3,700

From the website: “Offering comprehensive training, this rigorous six-week intensive immerses students in an accelerated curriculum. This ambitious and rewarding intensive serves the actor seeking familiarization with Practical Aesthetics – The Atlantic Technique and introduction to the development of skills required of a responsive physical instrument. Students may earn 8pts of college credit for the course by registering through New York University.”

Visit the site:

Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (London, UK)

Price range: £2,995 – £4,970

From the website: “Shakespeare Summer School has been in existence for over 35 years, and, by investigating Shakespeare from an actor’s point of view, has proved an invaluable resource for performers of all ages and experience. The course caters for seasoned professionals; for those who may be contemplating full-time drama training; for people who simply wish to explore an interest in the craft; and for enthusiasts of any age! The course draws on the classical aspects of RADA’s essential teaching, combining rehearsal of text with classes in essential skills, conducted by the RADA faculty.”

This particular course lasts 4 weeks, but other courses at RADA may last longer.

Visit the site:

Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute (New York, NY)

Price range: $1,350 – $3,925

From the website: The New York Intensive Program is designed to introduce both the experienced and inexperienced adult actor to the [Strasberg] Method. […] This program is suited for university students, working professionals, and those students who are only able to attend a short program who would like to be exposed to new possibilities in their acting throughout the calendar year – winter, spring, summer and fall. Intensives are offered seasonally at the Institute and run congruent to our regular adult Institute programming. Intensives are 4 weeks in length and are for students wishing a focused and concentrated taste of The Method work or professional actors wishing to brush up on their acting technique. All intensives have a set curriculum that pushes students toward a certain level of training in voice, movement, and acting, while building a basic understanding of Lee Strasberg’s work.”

Visit the site:

The Barrow Group (New York, NY)

Price range: $1,495 – $6,750

From the website: The Barrow Group School, located in New York City, offers professional and emerging artists training in acting, directing, playwriting and screenwriting. The Barrow Group School offers techniques designed to encourage spontaneity; foster entertaining, human, and compelling behavior; help you become more sensitive, imaginative, responsive, and alive onstage; relax you; change your work effortlessly and invisibly (so the audience won’t detect any effort on your part and therefore will feel like they are watching a real person rather than an actor “working”); and bring more freedom to your work.”

Visit the site:

Truthful Acting Studios (Orlando, FL)

Price: $995

From the website: Based in the teachings of legendary acting instructor Sanford Meisner, this program works to train the actor to move their focus away from the self and put it on the world around them. This approach is for any artist, whether this is your very first acting class, or even if you’ve been in the industry for years. The great thing about this approach is that even though everyone begins the approach from the beginning, each artist is on their own path and you can work at your level.”

Each semester lasts 14 weeks (meeting twice per week).

Visit the site:

Stella Adler Studio of Acting (New York, NY)

Price range: $2,200 – $3,750

From the website: “The studio is known for having one of the most diverse selections of summer programming, intensives which last 5 to 10 weeks, offering valuable training for actors of all levels. The center of the Summer Intensives is the Summer Conservatory, which approximates a semester of our NYU Tisch training, teaching the principles of Acting Technique, Scene Study, Movement and Voice & Speech. For the advanced actor, we have a Shakespeare Intensive focused on classical acting, a Chekhov Intensive on the form of modern realism, the Musical Theatre Intensive, the Self-Generated Theatre Intensive, Black Arts Theater Intensive and a Physical Theater Intensive, focusing on becoming a physically creative actor.”

Visit the site:

American Academy of Dramatic Arts (LA, California)

Price range: (see website for pricing details)

From the website: Three courses serve as the foundation of our Seven-Week and Five-Week Programs. These foundational courses are customized to train a range of actors from beginning to advanced, offering you the ideal opportunity to sharpen your craft this summer while working alongside The Academy’s master instructors.”

Visit the site:

Ashleigh Gardner received her MA in Literary, Cultural, and Textual Studies (with concentrations in Film, Gender Studies, and Psychoanalytic Theory) and her BA in English Literature (with concentrations in Victorian, Gothic, and Early American Literature and Gender Studies) from the University of Central Florida; she received her AA in Theatre/Drama/Dramatic Arts from Valencia College. She is a playwright, an actor, and’s Editor.
Thumbnail: Photo by Nadim Merrikh on Unsplash