Advance your craft.
A rigorous actor training program of classes, workshops and performance opportunities that explore how classical theatre translates across the centuries and into modern performance. Expand your technique, live in a creative community, prepare for college and experience life in rural France.
The Classical Acting Program aims to nurture a love of classical dramatic works through study and performance. Led by industry professionals, the program creates a supportive environment for developing artistic practice through an ensemble-based approach. There are six core classes taught weekly on rotation:
Exploring Classical Texts 201
Voice and Movement in Classical Context
Shakespeare (Cue Script Technique)
Stanislavski, Realism and Modern Drama
Classical Audition Lab
There are opportunities for personal coaching and work experience to help gap year students to build skills that will support career plans and further study, either in theatre or other subjects. Read a full description of the classes and curriculum.
Teaching and Mentoring
We don't just teach at Berridge, we empower our students with confidence in their unique gifts. Our faculty are all professional actors, directors, producers, writers, filmmakers, and choreographers who represent decades of experience in television, film and stage. Passion for creating is at the heart of everything we do. This commitment to helping you succeed in your artistic life creates a supportive community like no other. Berridge faculty live in community with our students and are available for one-to-one coaching and mentoring to support your learning and artistic goals. Check out these videos of our teachers talking about their classes to get a sense of how we teach.
At a Glance
CLASSICAL ACTING PROGRAM
Nov 1st - Dec 13th, 2021
Start this program in England for a 12-week experience:
Sept 20th - Oct 31st, 2021
Open to any students between the ages of 18 - 22. Requires an online application and supporting materials.
$8495 USD per session. There is a 5% discount if you enroll in both sessions.
A range of scholarships are available for this program.
Consider this program if:
you are interested in studying and performing classical plays
you want to boost acting technique
you are considering drama school
you want an acting program in a structured, residential setting
you need a starting point for your actor training or need to fill in the gaps in your training
you want to combine travel abroad, sightseeing or language learning with studying acting
Living in France
Famous the world over for its culture, history and food, living in France is at the top of every artists list. Our program is located in Normandy, a "hidden gem" of France, where quaint, picturesque villages meet rugged, unspoiled coastline. The château is near the village of Brix in the heart of The Cotentin Peninsula, famous for its delicious seafood and thousands of years of history from the Romans to WWII. You’ll enjoy trips to local French markets, lunch out at cafes, tours of bakeries and cider makers and full day excursions to the D-Day Landing Beaches, the medieval town of Bayeux and Mont St Michel, a thousand-year-old monastery atop a tidal island. As there is very little English spoken in Normandy, it offers the ultimate immersion experience for our French language students.
The château is situated in 5 acres of woodland and gardens and we have exclusive use of the house and property. Students are housed in double rooms with shared bathrooms, and genders are separated by floor. The larger rooms in the chateau are converted into acting studios and our theatre is a 250-year-old barn. There is also a student lounge and Wi-Fi throughout the property.
Berridge Gap students live in community and contribute collectively to the running of kitchen, household and grounds. There are plenty of opportunities for work/life experience from daily shopping and cooking to helping out in the garden.
Increase your confidence with tackling classical verse and prose
Learn how to translate classical work into modern performance
Complete work suitable for college/professional progress
Encourage critical thinking and creative problem solving skills
Strengthen both verbal and written communication of creative ideas
Improve French language fluency
Increased time management, self-reflection and self-evaluation skills
Experience living independently
Cultivate collaborative spirit and community mindedness
For those interested in learning or advancing in French Language skills, the Gap Year Program offers optional French language classes three times per week. The language program aims to improve conversational French, reading comprehension and writing skills through practical application and daily practice. There will be plenty of opportunity to use and perfect your French through interaction with the local community, on field trips and through the French-only speaking lounge at the château. Complete beginners through advanced students are welcome. Please note that all of the artistic teaching at Berridge is in English and French language classes are optional.
England and France
The Classical Acting Program in England and France can be as separate programs or connected for a 12-week experience. The Classical Acting Program in England offers a grounding in English theatre traditions, Stage Combat training and the best of London's live theatre scene including live performances at The Globe and the RSC.
Faculty on this program
Andrea has been the Director of Berridge Programs since 2008. Previously, she was Executive Director of Oxbridge Programs and has led academic enrichment programs at Oxford and Cambridge Universities and in London, Paris and Barcelona. Andrea is a trained actor, costume designer, meditation teacher and acting coach.
Dan is an actor and director in London. He trained at Drama Studio and holds an MA from Cambridge University. Recent credits include the world tour of Lionboy with Complicite. Dan has acted with the National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company and was a company member of the Young Vic Theatre for 6 years. Dan has taught at Drama Centre, Central School of Speech and Drama and East 15.
Simon is an actor, director and teacher based in London. He has a degree from University of Durham and attended Academy of Live and Recorded Arts. Simon has taught at Stanford University, Singapore Repertory Theatre, Oxford University, Loyola Marymount University, Drama Studio London and LAMDA.
Diarmaid is an actor and writer in London, England. He is a graduate of the MA Acting Program at East 15. He was the Company Manager of the Shakespeare Program for The Mason Gross School of Arts at Rutgers University for many years and has guided hundreds of students through their classical acting training with the Globe Theatre in London.
Cecily is an actor and singer from London. She is a graduate of École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq and the Brit School with a BTEC First & BTEC National in Performing Arts . Recent stage credits include The Wind and the Willows for Gobbledigook Theatre , Dial M For Murder with London Repertory Players and The Frida Kahlo Of Penge West for KP Productions.