This is one of the acting schools in Philadelphia that allows students to choose between a straight acting career and a musical theater career.
The core training in acting, movement, voice and speech is supplemented with different classes for acting and musical theatre students. Additional classes for straight acting students include text analysis, stage combat, acting for film and television, classical theater, mask, dialects and directing. Musical theater students take additional classes in music skills, musical theater voice, singing-acting, sight-singing, dance (ballet, tap, jazz, modern), partnering, and also work on their voice individually with a coach.
All students also take academic classes in theater and liberal arts, and learn all aspect of theatre production. For those not interested in getting a degree, the school also has an acting and musical theater workshop as part of their school of continuing education in the summer.
Performance opportunities: The school puts up about 15 productions each year, some at an 1,800-seat theater. Students have the opportunity to perform throughout the city.
Career preparation: Students learn from working professionals. Actors take an auditioning and a business of acting class. They also get a chance to audition in front of casting directors. Students are required to work on crew assignments backstage, getting practical experience in technical skills for the theater. Musical theater students appear in a senior showcase. There is an opportunity to study abroad at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts.
Degree: BFA in Acting, BFA in Musical Theatre.
Financial Aid: Merit and need-based scholarships are available from the university, as well as federal and state grants and work-study programs.
What you’ll need to apply: Transcripts, test scores, an essay, a teacher recommendation, an interview and an audition (auditions are held at the acting school in Philadelphia but actors who live far away can send a taped audition).