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Foundation Acting Diploma

This year-long course is designed to give you access to a wide range of knowledge, skills and experiences of acting for both stage and screen. You will graduate from the ALRA Foundation Acting course better prepared for the next stage of your training or career.

Course Leaders Aiden Crawford
Course Location Wandsworth (London), Wigan (Greater Manchester)
Study Level Foundation
Study Mode Full-time
Course Length 1 year

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The course consists of three core strands running throughout three terms: Acting, Voice and Movement. Each strand is integral to the holistic development of the actor. The strategies used in acting are underpinned by the use of the actor’s voice and body to enable truthful and detailed performance. The three key areas of skill are explored through the rehearsal strand, which includes monologue, ensemble and scene work. The course is one year full-time, comprising of 21 contact hours per week over four days, and culminates in a final public performance.

Explore a range of approaches to acting across both live and recorded performance. Classes encourage a sense of play, bravery and curiosity, ultimately enabling you to build your own individual acting toolkit.

Safely explore your body’s creative potential through both individual and ensemble work.

Explore a range of techniques and skills required to support text and performance safely. This will also include classes in singing and musicianship skills.

Studio projects and performances allow you to develop your ability to work as an ensemble, analyse text and develop the process of characterisation.

Audition and Professional Practice
Gain the knowledge and skills to support the next step of your journey, including audition preparation and application support.


Outcomes vary; some progress into further study, either on a BA or MA Acting course at ALRA or another drama school, or onto other creative degree or postgraduate courses, such as Musical Theatre, Creative Writing, Directing or Devised Theatre. Others might find a direct route out into the industry and gain employment.

You should be 18 years old on enrolment (by mid-September/first day of Induction). We also welcome older students, especially those who are thinking about a career change.

You don’t need any formal qualifications but those seeking to pursue a university place upon completion of the Foundation course will need an existing Level 3 qualification and can seek further advice.

We are not able to sponsor a VISA for international students to study on the Foundation course. Applicants must hold a valid VISA or be UK Nationals.

Selection is made by audition. Find out more here.

Funding information for the Foundation Acting Diploma and all ALRA courses can be found in Fees and Funding.


Fees for 2021 entry
Foundation Acting North
Foundation Acting South


Term 1
Term 2
Term 3
27th Sept 2021

3rd Dec 2021
10th Jan 2022

18th March 2022
25th April 2022

2nd July 2022


The Stefan Thegeby Foundation Bursary
Foundation students can apply for the ALRA Stefan Thegeby Foundation Bursary (£250 at each campus). This is given in recognition of the bravery of former student, Stefan Thegeby.

Stefan Thegeby was a remarkable young man who studied on our Foundation Course before training at the Central School of Speech and Drama. Stefan was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma, a rare disease where cancer cells are found in the bone or soft tissue. He remained, throughout, an incredibly vibrant and creative force of life, and to celebrate this, ALRA provide a bursary in his name.

Admission follows successful audition and interview – see the Application Guidelines for more information. Your audition will assess which acting course is most suitable to you.

Academy of Live and Recorded Arts