Below you will find a list of the types of classes and modules that have been on offer at the Academy.
You will have a 60-minute individual singing lesson and a 40-minute individual repertoire coaching session each week. In addition, there are group coaching sessions, ensemble singing projects and audition technique classes. Informed by the latest physiology research, we explore all aspects of your singing voice.
These classes and tutorials provide a supportive environment in which to grow and practise your skills as a company. We cover improvisation, acting through song, text work, sight-reading, building a character, the rehearsal process, audition work and more. You will apply your learning in the rehearsal and performance of scenes as well as whole plays, musicals and revues.
These classes cover voice science and its practical application to speaking and singing, and include a weekly 20-minute individual tutorial. We cover such components as speech and accent, text and language including Shakespearean verse, and vocal health. The integration of the speaking voice with the singing voice is fundamental to the programme and directly supports the work of the singing teachers.
Integration of Acting and Singing
In this weekly class you will be encouraged to match your vocal quality and texture to the acting demands of a song, and to develop your individuality, with a particular emphasis on extended voice technique. Audition repertoire, strategies and technique are practised throughout the year, as well as the assembling of a strong audition repertoire ‘bible’. DANCE The dance course concentrates on three vital elements: musicality, empathy and technical ability. You will learn to replicate dance combinations demonstrated by a choreographer or teacher. We aim to give you confidence in dance, and the ability to translate musicality and style to the appropriate task.
These classes are designed to build confidence and cultivate a sense of physicality. We take a creative approach to the work, offering a safe environment in which to try things out and stretch boundaries without fear of ‘doing it wrong’. Looking at solo and ensemble movement, including contact and partnering work, we aim to create complex choreography from simple building blocks. In the first term the focus is on telling a story through movement. Later in the year you will start to combine text and song with movement.
History of Musical Theatre
In these weekly sessions we listen to and discuss musicals from the Gershwin and Cole Porter era to the present day.
You will have the opportunity to work with professionals in performance, direction, casting, musical direction, choreography, performance coaching and psychology to formulate and practise strategies for breaking into the industry. How best to prepare for (and win) an audition is fundamental to this course.
New Music Workshops
Where possible, we foster the development of new writing, giving you the chance to help to create characters and stories. In 2019, our students have worked with directors John Caird and Lorne Campbell, and with composer John Cameron on a musical adaptation of Dickens’s Hard Times .
Visiting performers, composers and directors give masterclasses and workshops during which they share their insight into the industry. Sessions held by representatives of professional bodies and mock auditions with guest professionals are also arranged. In 2018-19, guests included Claude-Michel Schönberg, Pippa Ailion, Imelda Staunton and Patti LuPone.
Practical projects are rehearsed and performed throughout the year, allowing you to put everything you have learnt into practice. They are selected according to the individual needs of students and the company as a whole and are directed by top industry directors, both established and emerging. Past projects have included musicals, revues, concerts, cabarets, plays, showings of devised work, interdepartmental collaborations and recordings.
Agents' Showcase and Production
You will take part in a showcase with an invited audience of agents and casting directors, as well as full-scale musical productions. In 2019, the end-of-year productions were The Wild Party and City of Angels – both accompanied by the Academy Musical Theatre Orchestra in the Susie Sainsbury Theatre.
In addition to one-to-one piano tuition and a 30-minute weekly singing lesson, students specialising in this area focus on a wide range of skills including conducting, arranging and orchestration. You will attend and accompany relevant Musical Theatre classes and workshops as your timetable allows. You will act as Musical Director on performance projects, collaborating with a professional director, and will accompany and conduct public performances and competitions.