Conservatoire for Dance and Drama

 

History: The Conservatoire was established in 2001 to secure the future of conservatoire-level vocational training in dance and drama in England. It has a unique structure, made up of eight affiliate schools. All are small, specialist, vocational training institutions with international reputations for high quality training in dance, drama or circus arts.

Address: Very spread out - the Conservatoire's schools are based in London, Bristol and Leeds. LCDS, RADA, LAMDA, Circus Space and Central School of Ballet are located in central London, with Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance based just outside London in Twickenham. The Northern School of Contemporary Dance is in Leeds, and the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School is based in the Clifton area of Bristol.

Ambience: All the institutions buzz with the creative energy generated by passionate young performing arts students. London, Leeds and Bristol are all fabulous for culture-lovers.

Who's the boss? Veronica Lewis MBE (LCDS) and Edward Kemp (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art) are the joint principals of the Conservatoire.

Prospectus: Contact the schools directly as these will obviously vary.

What you need to know

Easy to get into? No – entry is by way of a tough interview and audition process, and competition is extremely fierce. Applications are made directly to each affiliate school.

Vital statistics: All the colleges offer rigorous training aimed at producing professional dancers, actors, circus performers, stage managers and technicians of the highest quality. The Conservatoire maintains good employment rates in the dance, drama and circus arts professions. It estimates that between 83 and 98 per cent of its students find relevant professional employment after completing their training. RADA's courses are validated by King's College London; BOVTS courses are validated by the University of the West of England; NSCD, LCDS, CSB, LAMDA and Circus Space courses are all validated by the University of Kent.

Added value: All are leading lights in their respective spheres. The training is highly demanding, both physically and mentally. Superb links to the profession, with guest directors and designers. Agents and casting directors keep an eye out for talent amongst the students.

Teaching: Quality of teaching scored very highly in the 2012 National Student Survey, with 97 per cent of respondents agreeing with positive appraisals of teaching.

Any accommodation? None of the schools offer on-campus accommodation, but all offer free advice on where to stay nearby.

Cheap to live there? Depends where you are. Expect to pay £100 or more a week in London, £65 in Leeds, with Bristol a bit more.

Transport links: Great - big city locations mean these institutions are all very well connected by public transport.

Fees: They’ve gone for the money shot - the full £9,000 per year for new home and EU undergraduates. Postgraduate students starting in 2013 will pay £4,870 per year.

Bursaries: The Conservatoire offers a range of scholarships in the form of fee discounts and bursaries. See here for details.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: London, Leeds and Bristol are all brilliant for night-owls, if you've still got the energy after a day's training that is.

Glittering alumni: Daniel Day-Lewis; Jeremy Irons; Helen Baxendale; Jim Broadbent; Anna Maxwell Martin; Richard Harris; Richard Attenborough; Kenneth Branagh; Glenda Jackson; choreographers Siobhan Davies, Richard Alston and Akram Khan; and dancer Javier de Frutos. More recently, Dominic Cooper, Andrea Riseborough, Gemma Arterton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Ruth Wilson, Tom Hiddleston.

SPONSORED FEATURES

Day In a Page

Solved after 200 years: the mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army

Solved after 200 years

The mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army
Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise

Robert Fisk on the Turkey conflict

Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise
Investigation into wreck of unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden

Sunken sub

Investigation underway into wreck of an unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden
Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes

Age of the selfie

Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes
Not so square: How BBC's Bloomsbury saga is sexing up the period drama

Not so square

How Virginia Woolf saga is sexing up the BBC period drama
Rio Olympics 2016: The seven teenagers still carrying a torch for our Games hopes

Still carrying the torch

The seven teenagers given our Olympic hopes
The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis, but history suggests otherwise

The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis...

...but history suggests otherwise
The bald truth: How one author's thinning hair made him a Wayne Rooney sympathiser

The bald truth

How thinning hair made me a Wayne Rooney sympathiser
Froome wins second Tour de France after triumphant ride into Paris with Team Sky

Tour de France 2015

Froome rides into Paris to win historic second Tour
Fifteen years ago, Concorde crashed, and a dream died. Today, the desire to travel faster than the speed of sound is growing once again

A new beginning for supersonic flight?

Concorde's successors are in the works 15 years on from the Paris crash
I would never quit Labour, says Liz Kendall

I would never quit party, says Liz Kendall

Latest on the Labour leadership contest
Froome seals second Tour de France victory

Never mind Pinot, it’s bubbly for Froome

Second Tour de France victory all but sealed
Oh really? How the 'lowest form of wit' makes people brighter and more creative

The uses of sarcasm

'Lowest form of wit' actually makes people brighter and more creative
A magazine editor with no vanity, and lots of flair

No vanity, but lots of flair

A tribute to the magazine editor Ingrid Sischy
Foraging: How the British rediscovered their taste for chasing after wild food

In praise of foraging

How the British rediscovered their taste for wild food