London Theatre Program (BADA)

Contact

E-mail

914.395.2305

Become part of London’s great theatrical tradition as you work and study with leading actors and directors from the world of British theatre.

Sponsored by Sarah Lawrence College and the British American Drama Academy (BADA), the London Theatre Program (LTP) is designed for dedicated students who are passionate about their work and serious about acting. Students may enroll in the One Semester program in either the fall or spring. Students interested in immersing themselves more deeply in British conservatory training should explore the Year Long program, which runs from fall through spring.

Academics

Students take acting classes, master classes, and workshops with leading artists from the British stage, complemented by individual tutorials with teachers. A faculty from Britain's foremost drama schools teaches technical classes in voice, movement, and stage fighting.

Classes in theatre history and theatre criticism, tickets to some of the best productions of the season, and the experience of performing in a professional theatre round out the program.

Students can enroll in either the fall or spring for single-semester study. Those wishing to pursue intense training are encouraged to begin in the fall and continue with the Advanced London Theatre Program in the spring.

The British American Drama Academy (BADA)

The British American Drama Academy enables students from across the world to study classical theatre with leading actors and directors of the British and American theatre by organizing programs with American colleges and universities. This program, based in Magdalen College in Oxford University and is run in association with Yale School of Drama. High school students may also study acting and discover Shakespeare on BADA’s Midsummer Conservatory Program for 16 – 18 year olds.

Single Semester (Fall or Spring)

Students receive a full semester of Sarah Lawrence College academic credit (15 credits) for each semester of the program. Students who come for either the fall or spring semester take the following courses.

The One Semester conservatory program runs in the fall and the spring. The first eight weeks include classes in:

Scene Study: Shakespeare (2 credits)
Particular attention will be given to textual analysis and verse speaking.

Scene Study: High Comedy (2 credits)
Restoration and later periods. Playwrights include Vanburgh, Congreve, Sheridan, Wilde, Shaw, and Coward.

Scene Study: Modern Physical Theatre (2 credits)
Collaboration with members of Theatre de Complicité to examine twentieth-century European texts and modes of acting including Commedia Dell’Arte and mask work.

Acting in Performance (3 credits)
During the last five weeks of each term, students will rehearse and perform productions of major British and European classical works in a working London theatre. Recent BADA productions have included works by Shakespeare, Wedekind, Barker, Webster, Euripides, Durrenmatt, Pirandello, Farquhar, and Brecht.

Voice (1 credit)
The course takes an eclectic view of voice teaching, combining the principles of freeing the natural voice, as practiced by Kristin Linklater, with other methodologies that consolidate this approach.

Movement (1 credit)
The course is directed to general movement exercises involving muscular coordination and control.

Stage Fighting (1 credit)
Students are trained in realistic stage combat with emphasis on safety, control, period styles, and technical virtuosity.

Theatre History (2 credits each semester)

  • The Middle Ages through the 18th Century, including work by Marlowe, Webster, Ford, Johnson, Dryden, Behn, Vanbrugh, and Congreve. (fall)
  • British and European plays of the 20th Century, including work by Ibsen, Chekhov, Pirandello, Brecht, Lorca, Ionesco, Genet, and Beckett. (spring)

Dramatic Criticism (1 credit)
An introduction to dramatic criticism, linked to regular visits to the theatre.

Tutorials
One-to-one work sessions with a member of faculty focused on pieces selected by the student.

Weekly Theatre Visits
Including a trip to see the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford

Weekly Masterclasses
With leading UK theatre practitioners, including actors, directors, and designers from the British and American stage. Recent Masterclass instructors include: Sir Derek Jacobi, Maria Aitken, Brian Cox, Brandon Victor Dixon, Daniel Evans, Julian Glover, Henry Goodman, Greg Hicks, David Leveaux, Jonathan Price, David Schwimmer, Fiona Shaw, Sam West, and Deborah Warner.

In the final five weeks of the semester, students will put their class work into practice in:

Acting in Performance
In three casts, students rehearse three productions, each led by a British Theatre Director, over four weeks culminating in a final performance in a professional theatre during the final week. During the rehearsal period, students continue their voice and movement work with a warm-up class each morning, helping further develop the core foundations for the modern actor.

Advanced Program (Full Year)

In the first term of the Year Long program, students take the same classes as the One Semester version of the London Theatre Program. The second semester is an advanced program that enables students to build on the voice, movement, and foundational actings skills learned in the previous semester, while also introducing a variety of new disciplines and techniques.

Shakespeare (2 credits)
This course enables students who have mastered the basic requirements of Shakespearean performance to explore Shakespeare’s language more deeply through scene work and physical approaches to theatre, coupled with rigorous text work. Students will create pieces in response to Shakespeare, giving them ownership of something quite unique, whilst continuing to work on Shakespearean text. Students will extensively investigate character looking at a number of plays and develop a series of skills that help to unlock characterisation.

Acting in Performance, Classical (3 credits)
The final production leads on from the Shakespeare class. By using the skills and tools developed through the sessions, students working alongside the director, will create their own full length work based on a Shakespeare play. This will be performed in a London theatre.

Advanced Criticism (1 credit)
Led by a leading theatre critic, this course focuses on how being a constructive critic has benefits for the students as practitioners. Students will look at how taking risks can aid creativity and the role of a critic. The course explores and discusses topics such as; How to watch a theatre production, how do we look at a work of art? How do we decide what is good and bad art? How can that be applied to our own work as practitioners?

Theatre History (2 credits)
This course focuses upon the study of dramatic texts by placing them within their historical, critical, and geographical context. Students will study four plays from different historical periods and then use this work to investigate the performance history and critical reputation of these plays. Students will also explore the places in London that are associated with each play and visit the theatres linked to each play text to learn more about the ways in which performance spaces and theatrical styles changed from the 16th century to the modern day.

Stage Fighting (1 credit)
Led by one of the leading fight directors in Europe, this course builds on skills acquired in the first semester of study and introduces weaponry into the classes. Students will learn and be able to perform a large body of practical fight techniques and will acquire a strong working comprehension of all the relevant safety principles and be able to apply them in practical situations. Students will strengthen their practical, physical partnering skills, and gain a more acute understanding of how to integrate character into action, and action into text.

Voice (1 credit)
This course builds on the technical acquisitions of the first semester where the class focus was on the understanding, practice, and fluent delivery of the basic components that go to make up spoken voice work—alignment, breath, tone, articulation, and range. In this semester, how to apply these skills in the acting equation takes centre stage, where there will be much more emphasis on hands on work on student monologues and voice support for the internal Modern Scenes and Film courses. Here, students will be shown how to develop important, seamless links between technique and interpretation as required in performance.

Movement (1 credit)
This course allows students to explore a character’s journey through the use of play. Using Shakespeare plays and characters students will explore concepts of ‘use of space, elements, animal qualities, rhythm, and energy levels.’ Students will also be introduced to dance styles from that period, as well as exploring more contemporary dance interpretations.

Acting for Film and TV (2 credits)
This course emphasises building confidence and ease in front of the camera and in the on-set environment. Students explore and learn the principles of screen acting technique and learn the actor’s and film set vocabulary. They become familiar with the logistics of performance on set and begin to assume responsibility for their own creative choices. At the end of the course, students are given a professionally edited video of their on-screen scenes.

Modern Workshop Production (2 credits)
In this course, students rehearse and perform a workshop production of a 20th century play in collaboration with a director. Students contribute to the project in direction, design, choreography, etc. The production is presented in-house. The aim of this course is to discover the simple, yet powerful use of language in storytelling.

Tutorials
An important supplement to the curriculum are regular one-on-one tutorials. In tutorials, students study text and speeches of the students choosing individually with a faculty member who is also a professional actor. These sessions are devoted to improving students’ acting abilities and encouraging students to explore and independently lead on making a range of creative choices whilst building on their portfolio of audition pieces.

Faculty

Please visit BADA's website for faculty information.

Living in London

The London theatre is the principal focal point for drama in the English-speaking world. Nowhere else is there such a diversity of plays or such a range of talent. The resources of London are therefore central to students’ experience in The London Theatre Program.

Housing

Each semester, students are allocated secure and modern accommodations in one of two locations in the heart of London, both with excellent transport links for getting to BADA and exploring the city. Both locations have weekly professional housekeeping service, wireless internet access, and secure entry systems.

All accommodations have central heating and come with a private kitchen fully equipped with a stove, refrigerator, washing machine, and microwave oven, spacious living area furnished with sofas, flat screen TV, and telephone for incoming calls, a private safe for valuable items, and wireless internet access.

Cultural Activities & Excursions

Attendance at performances is an integral part of the program. Master classes and talks with guest artists from the theatre world are arranged throughout each semester.

Books & Plays

Books are provided for all acting classes. BADA has its own library, from which students may loan out books. The library has computers for writing papers and Internet access during office hours.

Admission

The Sarah Lawrence College London Theatre Program is highly selective, and the number of students is limited. It is open to juniors and seniors enrolled at any accredited American college or university.

The Office of International Programs can provide further information about the program, as well as names and numbers of program veterans who will be happy to discuss any aspect of the program.

Audition

All students applying to the London Theatre Program are required to audition either in person or by submitting an uploaded video via YouTube to the International Programs Office. The audition should run no longer than 10 minutes. The audition dates for the fall and full year are as follows:

  • March 4, 2018—UCLA

  • March 5, 2018—University of Southern California; Please contact Emily Moon at moone@usc.edu to schedule an audition.

  • March 7, 2018—Yale

  • March 8/9, 2018—Sarah Lawrence College; Sarah Lawrence students must audition in person.

  • March 14, 2018—Tufts University

  • March 17, 2018—Northwestern (Chicago)

  • March 18, 2018—Julliard (New York City)

  • March 19, 2018—Howard University (Washington, DC)

If you are unable to audition in person, you may audition at any time via YouTube. To do so, the video must be set as “unlisted (private).” E-mail the unlisted URL to Cecilia Weisman. To schedule an appointment for an in person audition, please contact Cecilia Weisman at cweisman@sarahlawrence.edu. The results of your audition will be made known to you, but a formal letter of admission will only be provided after you complete your application.

The following must be part of your audition:

  1. Some words about yourself. For example: your name, how old you are, what school you attend, when you began studying acting and why, what you know about the London Theatre Program, why you are applying to the program, and how you heard about the program.
  2. A monologue from Shakespeare no longer than two minutes.
  3. A monologue of your own choice no longer than two minutes.
  4. A song of your own choice which can be acapella or accompanied.

Applications & Deadlines

Students may submit an audition via YouTube in advance of completing their application. To do so, the video must be set as “unlisted (private).” E-mail the unlisted URL to Cecilia Weisman. To schedule an appointment for an in person audition, please contact Cecilia Weisman at cweisman@sarahlawrence.edu. Please make sure your audition contains all the elements listed above. The results of your audition will be made known to you, but a formal letter of admission will only be provided after you complete your application.

Students may apply for the full year, fall semester, or spring semester. The completed application for the full year and fall semester is due March 1. The completed application for the spring semester is due October 15.

Tuition & Fees

Listed below is an estimate of costs to help you plan for the semester ahead. Sarah Lawrence tuition, per semester, will be $26,300. Tuition includes all academic expenses, trips, tickets, and master classes.

Room

$5,450

Room deposit (against damages)

$200

Study abroad medical insurance*

$234

*Students still need to have their own coverage or coverage through the Sarah Lawrence plan to ensure they are adequately covered before they leave the US and upon their return.

Estimated Expenses

Meals

$1,900 - $2,600

Incidental expenses (theatre tickets, books, etc.) $850 - $1,050

Roundtrip airfare

$738*

Local transportation

$500

*This estimate was from a student discount service (as of 4/21/17), as noted in our Handbook, www.statravel.com, and based on a non-stop flight from New York to London. Travel expenses before or after the term, and any trips taken during the mid-term break, are not included in this estimate.

Financial Aid

Sarah Lawrence College students who normally receive financial aid may apply their awards to any College-sponsored program abroad.

Sarah Lawrence College offers limited financial assistance to guest students on this program. Students should consult their home school's financial aid office for guidance on other financial aid resources.

For more information about Sarah Lawrence financial aid options, e-mail the Office of International Programs.

Academic Calendar

Please note that these dates are subject to change.

Fall 2017
Friday, September 8 Students arrive*
Sunday, September 10 Orientation day
Monday, September 11 First day of term
November 6 - 10 Mid-term break
December 12, 13, 14 End-of-year productions
Friday, December 15 End of term/farewell party
Saturday, December 16 Students must vacate housing
Spring 2018
Friday, January 5 Students arrive*
Sunday, January 7 Orientation day
Monday, January 8 First day of term
March 5 - 9 Mid-term break
April 10, 11, 12 End-of-year productions
Friday, April 13 End of term
Saturday, April 14 Students must vacate housing

*Students are expected to arrive in London on the Friday stipulated and cannot depart prior to the end of the term.