Some actors are born with a knack for acting, but others aren’t. That’s why there are acting schools for those who still have to undergo formal acting training so they could make the most out of their abilities. Actors don’t just expose themselves to various opportunities by enrolling in these programs; they also get valuable acting lessons and experience.
Now you probably don’t have an idea which colleges have the best acting programs if you’re just starting out as an actor. We present a list of some of the best theater colleges in the country that could possibly aid you kick-start your acting career. You’ll also get to know the distinguished alumni they’ve produced throughout the years, aside from knowing more about their programs.
Northwestern University is a private research university with three different campuses, composed of 12 different schools and colleges. Founded by John Evans, along with businessmen, eight lawyers, and some Methodist, in 1851.
Before, it was only founded for the purpose of serving the Northwest Territory, which includes the states of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, other parts of Minnesota, and Wisconsin. Now the institution is noted for their drama department that embraces history and theory in its approach to theater and dance.
Northwestern University has a list of renowned alumni like Zooey Deschanel, Zach Braff, Ann-Margaret, David Schwimmer, Tony Roberts, and Jennifer Jones.
Yale University has twelve different constituent schools: the original undergraduate college, ten other professional schools, and the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. It is also the third-oldest institution for higher education in the United States because it was established way back in 1701.
The School of Drama is one of their popular schools. It is renowned for giving emphasis to theories revolving around theater and having a well-rounded approach toward it. Those who are under this program are guided by the Yale Dramatic Association, the second-oldest college theater company in the college, as well as different professionals from the industry.
Among the renowned alumni in various fields that Yale University has produced are Jodie Foster, Anderson Cooper, Lupita Nyong’o, James Franco, and director and producer Paul Newman.
The college is a conducive place for learning for many aspiring actors and filmmakers. In their opinion, the institution offers a rigorous dramatic training that fits well with provincial environment. Each student gets to learn every essential aspect of the production process because various departments group together to collaborate on certain projects.
Some of the notable alumni of Bennington College are Tim Daly, Carol Channing, Alan Arkin, Peter Dinklage, Holland Taylor, and Justin Theroux.
Emerson College was originally founded as a school of oratory, and it is located in downtown Boston, Massachusetts. It is, by far, the only comprehensive university or college in the country that is dedicated to the arts of communications.
Only ten students were enrolled in the first class of the conservatory in 1880. Its name was changed to Monroe Conservatory of Oratory the following year. It was called Emerson College of Oratory before it was named Emerson College in 1939.
Today, Emerson college is known for its distinguished graduates such as Peter O’Brian, Matt McGorry, Michael Grant Terry, and Steven Wright, as well as for its comprehensive programs including educational theater classes, musical theater, and stage management.
The theater arts department of the university has been a popular choice among aspiring actors, despite having a plethora of programs. It is mainly because of the opportunities that are in store for them, which include internships at the Off-Broadway, The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and the Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum.
The alumni of Drew University have taken major roles in various industries, just like other schools and colleges on this list. Some of those who have made it in the entertainment industry are Jeff Smith and John T. Cunningham.
Carnegie Mellon University
In 1900, the Carnegie Mellon University started off as the Carnegie Technical Schools. The school, which was founded by Andrew Carnegie, only became an institute of technology 12 years after. It merged with the Mellon Institute of Industrial Research to establish the Carnegie Mellon University in 1967.
The university has a total of seven independent schools and colleges as of today. These are the College of Engineering, Mellon College of Science, School of Computer Science, H. John Heinz III College, Tepper School of Business, College of Fine Arts, and Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
The Carnegie Mellon School of Drama, the oldest degree-granting drama program in the country, is also being housed by the Carnegie Mellon University. In 1914, it was founded as a part of the College of Fine Arts. Among their distinguished alumni are Billy Porter, Matt Bomer, and Zachary Quinto.
Although this list might prove to be useful, it’s better that you also have other sources of information when you start to choose a college to jump-start your career. You’ll be able to find plenty of great acting schools that you can enroll in and which could give you the knowledge you are looking for. So don’t stop striving and just keep searching out there. Just believe in yourself and trust your instinct in knowing and finding which theater college would best suit your needs as an artist and as a person as well.