Acting Foundation Course

  • Acting Foundation Course
  • Acting Foundation Course
  • Acting Foundation Course
  • Acting Foundation Course
  • Acting Foundation Course
  • Acting Foundation Course
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About this course


20 weeks.

Term Start

September 2018

Entry Requirements

Applications are welcomed from those 18+ (at the start of the course). You will be required to attend an audition in the USA or London at Rose Bruford College before being accepted on the course. Interviews can also be also arranged via Skype and video submission for international applicants. Candidates should be motivated, enthusiastic and engaged with learning about acting.

Applicants will be asked to prepare and learn two contrasting speeches (Contemporary and Classical) of no more than 2 minutes in length each.


The Foundation Course in Acting provides a rigorous and in-depth training that will give you the skills, techniques and confidence invaluable either as a preparation for further vocational training, higher education (Degree or MA/MFA) or for a career in the performing Arts.

The course is designed to support your development as an actor in training, auditioning and future practice in a way that is rigorous and professional.

Course Overview
Weeks: 20
Weekly contact hours: 30
Days: Monday to Friday
Time: 9am - 5pm

The course is designed to develop you physically, vocally and imaginatively whilst encouraging an independent and in-depth approach to your work. We arrange a number of theatre visits and workshops as well as audition panels with outside theatre and casting directors. Students get help to build their actors portfolio of songs and speeches as well as getting one to one vocal coaching.

Student Support
Each student has a personal tutor and is expected to keep a Personal Development Journal that is reviewed in 1-1 tutorials each term. You will also be given support and advice regarding applications for further study and the world of work. Foundation actors will have tutorials each term with the course leader to review progress and get feedback. The responsibility for your learning lies with you and therefore self-reflection is a critical part of the course helping you increase your personal impact and manage stress.

Students will be taught a limber which they will be required to do each morning to strengthen and build flexibility and improve fitness.

Classes include; acting (studying Stanislavski and Meisner), performance/audition technique, movement, ensemble, voice, text study, sight-reading, Shakespeare, singing, acting for TV/film (London only).

There are two full time rehearsal projects during the course; Term 1 contemporary scene study and Term 2 Shakespeare, as well as weekly masterclasses with outside professional directors and theatre companies. Highly experienced tutors from our performance B.A courses as well as professional practitioners deliver the course.

Masterclasses include; Building your audition portfolio, Grotowski, physical theatre, audition technique, Augusto Boal, acting through song, Uta Hagen, acting for camera, clowning, stage fighting and unarmed combat, Alexander Technique, musicality (all masterclasses are subject to change)

Why choose this course?

  • Intensive 20 week acting course
  • 1 x Stage Scholarship available to cover course fees 
  • Delivered on our Sidcup parkland campus
  • Train with experienced acting staff and visiting directors
  • Ideal preparation for further vocational study at Drama school (BA and MA)

Employability & Industry

What can I do when I graduate?

At the end of the programme you will be prepared to study on either BA/MA/MFA courses. Graduates on the Foundation Course have also successfully found professional employment and agent representation in both the UK, EU and USA.

Students from the course have been offered places on both our BA and MA courses, whilst others have been offered places or had final round auditions at; Central, East 15, RADA, Drama Centre, Italia Conti, LAMDA, Royal Welsh, Mountview, Guildford, Drama Studio, Guildhall, The American Academy of Dramatic Art and Stanford University.



“The Rose Bruford Foundation course was an incredible experience. It was a challenging, hit-the-ground-running kind of course-- an amazing introduction to the rigors of a full-time drama course and to the British model of training. The tutors really cared about every student's progress, and were supportive, instructive and professional throughout. As an American student, I felt welcome and supported every step of the way. I feel like I grew so much personally and as an actor, and my eyes were opened to so many new ideas. The biggest thing I learned is that what I know about acting is only the tip of the iceberg, and the foundation course has given me the tools to begin to chip away at the rest of it. Highly recommend”!
Davis Leonard

“The course is complimented by a self-evaluative ideology throughout, with lots of emphasis in discovering individuality. There are plenty of opportunities to gain feedback within scene studies, skills classes and audition preparation, where you often work 1:1 with a senior director. This level of personal care has made me more in tune with my strengths- whilst acting and as a learner. Furthermore, I am keen to continue developing my own identity and learning styles.

We have practised a lot of breathing work, Alexander technique and posture correction. This is all in the hope of releasing tension from the voice and the body. This has helped me to notice and change my own habits that arise in stressful situations, e.g. an audition.

We have worked with many teachers and visiting practitioners who are all working professionals and experts in their fields. It has been honouring to delve into their wealth of knowledge and experience.

I now feel more disciplined and prepared for taking the next step”.
Alisha Dyer-Spence.

“I can’t believe how lucky I am to get to study here. After attending a four-year BA Drama program in CA, I wanted an intensive, short acting program as my post grad. I didn’t feel done with school and wanted training that would steep me in technique, stretch me as an actor, and crystalize my artistic goals. I applied to several schools, and was accepted to a number of top MFA grad acting programs in the States. Then I received my Rose Bruford acceptance, and couldn’t believe the quality and breadth of training here. It was strictly a curriculum and quality of training based decision. Rose Bruford came out on top with flying colors. I never focused on landing here in England, but I’m so grateful that I allowed the quality of training to be the determining factor. And it has been everything I hoped for and more. Now towards the end of my time here, I feel like an incredibly versatile actor, confident in my technique, and know exactly what my performing goals are. I feel ready to tackle the industry, and I never thought I would say that. Rose Bruford is a truly magnificent drama school, and I couldn’t be luckier to have trained here.”
International Student
Asha Noel Iyer

“The course has given me the opportunity to grow as a person and a performer in such a supportive and safe environment. It has opened my eyes to how much I don’t know as well as do and the courage to pursue acting as a lifelong learning process”
Leah Gayer

“I feel I have a foundation actor’s toolkit now…the classes at Bruford and all the teachers have been absolutely incredible. We have learnt so much and grown so much as people as well as actors”
Emelia Marshall Lovesey


Meet our industry team who currently teach on the course:

Alex Williams - Performance Practice- Project Director

Alex graduated from Rose Bruford in 2001 and went straight into TV acting in some of the nations favourite shows. He then landed a regular role in Family Affairs and stayed there for a year earning nominations for best actor in the National TV Soap Awards. On leaving the show, he took a regular role in Casualty and then A Touch of Frost with David Jason. He began filmmaking and was lucky enough to be trained as a director by some of the best whilst on set as an actor, and then at London Film School.

He has directed Music Promos for bands such as the Fratellis, Glasvegas, Nitro and The Heartbreaks whilst always writing, directing and editing well known commercials. His first film Initiation picked up many awards and was picked for the BAFTA soho shorts festival. He is currently editing his most recent film Soldier Bee starring Shauna Macdonald (The Decent, Howl) and George Newton (This is England, Dead Mans Shoes).

He is an 'Actors Director' and a perfectionist who will always strive for the truth in any performance.


Bea Pemberton - Movement

 Bea Pemberton trained at Lecoq in Paris and as an Alexander Technique Teacher. Her practice combines the playfulness and rhythm of the European performance style with the necessary balance and freedom in movement that produces an authentic presence. She has worked as a performer, touring in the UK and abroad. She has directed numerous  devised shows in the theatre, and circus .  Currently directing and teaching musicians, opera singers and actors.


Darren Rapier - TV

Darren trained at Rose Bruford gaining a B.A Hons Theatre and has worked in Theatre, TV, Film and radio as a writer, director and actor.  As a facilitator, writer and director he has worked on projects for the Royal Albert Hall, National Youth Theatre, Make Believe Arts, GLYPT, the Half Moon and a performance for Her Majesty the Queen.   Currently he is working for BBCTV and teaching at Rose Bruford and Central school of Speech and Drama. He is artistic director of Spanner in the Works (production and workshop company) and director of Tualen Pictures.

Federay Holmes - Project Director

Federay trained at Guldhall and is an actor and director and Literary Associate of the Factory. She has worked for many years with students at Central School, RADA, Niagara University and Birmingham University. She is Visiting Associate Director for the Dutch Factory in Amsterdam for whom she has directed several Shakespeare plays. In 2015 she directed the Sonnet Walks for Shakespeare’s Globe and will be returning as director in 2016, Shakespeare’s Anniversary Year. Recent television and film work includes Jim Loach’s Oranges and Sunshine, The Widower, New Tricks and Holby City.


Nick DiCola - Voice

Nick holds an MA with distinction in Voice Studies from Central School of Speech and Drama and a BA in Linguistics from the University of Rochester. He is a deputy dialect coach for Billy Eliot and also teaches at The Musical Theatre Academy, London Dramatic Academy, Rose Bruford College, the City Literary Institute, and Best School of Acting for youth in St. Albans. Nick has taught voice as a visiting lecturer at Central School of Speech and Drama, CTTC, Read College of Dance and Theatre, the London School of Musical Theatre, and East 15. He has provided voice and dialect support for productions such as Long Day's Journey into Night for the Bermuda Performing Arts Festival, The Great Gatsby at Wilton's Music Hall, Crazy For You with Upstairs at the Gatehouse, The Master’s Room for BAFTA and The Royal Academy of Art, and the National Theatre Connections with Watford Palace Theatre.


Raymi Quiroga - Meisner Acting

Raymi Ortuste Quiroga graduated from the BA (Hons) Acting course at Rose Bruford College with first class honours. Since then he has continued to train in the Meisner technique with a number of experts both from the UK and the USA. Now, Artistic Director of Chaskis Theatre -a transnational platform for outstanding contemporary playwrights from the Americas, dedicated to producing plays largely unknown to the UK- Raymi works collaboratively with playwrights from across the Atlantic, to share stories that transcend cultural and geographical boundaries. Chaskis approach to acting is rooted in the Meisner technique and Raymi has been leading the company in their ongoing exploration of the work. But there is also a physical aspect to his training, which seeks to marry this American technique with elements of Grotowsky's poor theatre. He calls it "Sandy meets Jerzy" and it has given the approach a unique perspective and interesting ethos.


Sarah Stephenson - Singing

A graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music, Sarah has worked as a professional accompanist, opera repetiteur, Musical Director and vocal coach. Her work as an accompanist has seen her perform concert programmes at venues including St. Georges Hall, Fairfield Hall and London’s Wigmore Hall. Sarah has also worked as a rehearsal pianist for companies such as the Northern Ballet, Leicester Haymarket Theatre and the Young Vic Theatre Company.

As a freelance musician, Sarah has worked as a Musical Director for London fringe shows and the Edinburgh Festival and has been a vocal consultant to independent record label Deltasonic. Sarah has over twenty years’ experience teaching singing in some of the leading colleges and Universities in the UK,

Including; the RWCMD, Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (Head of Vocal Studies), Rose Bruford (Actor & Actor Musician Programmes), Guildford School of Acting, Doreen Bird College, Trinity College of Music, Drama Studio London, and Goldsmiths University.

Sarah is a certified Master Teacher of the Estill voice training system and a

Qualified Sound Healer (MCSH)She runs Sound meditations and Sound workshops in East Sussex and London.


Yarit Dor - Movement

Yarit trained in dance theatre in Israel and at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance. From 2006 to 2010 she performed as a dancer with Hagit Yakira Dance Company and worked as the company’s dramaturge.
In 2007 she graduated with an MA in Theatre Practices from Rose Bruford College after which she trained in Lecoq physical theatre at LISPA and was an actor-creator with Clowns at Work, an international collective 2008-2010. She is also a certified BASSC stage combat teacher, a Pilates and Garuda instructor.

She currently works as a movement director, fight choreographer and visiting movement tutor in various drama conservatoires and universities such as: RADA, Italia Conti BA Acting, Fourth Monkey, Arts University Bournemouth. Her main teaching areas are: movement for actors, Commedia dell’Arte, comedy improvisation and slapstick, physical performance, dance choreography and stage combat. 

Natalie Bray - Audition Preparation and Performance Practice

Natalie is a freelance acting coach based in London with a focus on coaching for drama school auditions. As well as one-to-one coaching she teaches 'Audition Preparation' on the foundation courses at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts and Rose Bruford College of Theatre & Performance.

Natalie loves coaching and really enjoys collaborating with her students to find the perfect monologues, then working together to build confidence and get your pieces to a point where you're excited to show them off.

She trained at Drama Centre London and is a professional actor myself, her aim is to give students a toolkit of techniques that will see you through the rigorous process of auditioning, making it an enjoyable and exciting experience.


Colin Hurley - Project Director- Shakespeare

Colin Hurley (born 1957) is an English actor and a former member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre and the Shakespeare's Globe company, specialising in performing the works of William Shakespeare.

Born in Leicester, Hurley first became interested in acting at Alderman Newton's Boys' School when he played Le Beau in As You Like It before going on to act in youth theatre, school plays and amateur dramatic societies. On leaving school in 1969 he spent ten years working in repertory theatres around the United Kingdom when his roles included the title role in Hamlet, Nero in Britannicus, Gus in The Dumb Waiter, Tony Lumpkin in She Stoops to Conquer, (Salisbury Playhouse), Ariel in The Tempest (Gateway Theatre, Chester), the title role in Henry V, The Black Prince in Edward III (Theatr Clwyd), Pip in Great Expectations (Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich) and Dromio of Syracuse in The Comedy of Errors (Bristol Old Vic). He also worked with Communicado and The Custard Factory, playing Tyresius in Antigone, Johnnie in Hello and Goodbye, and the Farrant twins in Corpse! for Vienna's English Theatre. He then studied at the Central School of Speech and Drama, graduating in 1981.

Shakespeare Work

A regular performer at Shakespeare's Globe, his stage roles here include The Golden Ass (2001-2), Lucio in Measure for Measure (2003-4), Troilus and Cressida (2004-5), Autolychus in The Winter’s Tale(2004-5), Louis VI in In Extremis (2006-7), Henry VIII (2010), Cardinal Wolsey and Henry Barrow in Anne Boleyn (2010), Lavatch in All's Well That Ends Well (2011), and Stanley/King Edward IV in Richard III (2012), which transferred to Broadway (2013). Other appearances include Dennis in Loot at the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith (1992), Andrey Prozorov in Three Sisters Two at the Orange Tree Theatre (2002), The Actor in The Woman in Black at the Fortune Theatre (2003), David in Here’s What I Did With My Body One Day at the Pleasance Theatre (2004), and Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night in the West End (2012) and on Broadway (2013). With the Royal Shakespeare Company he appeared as Lord Byron in Camino Real (1996), as Horatio in Hamlet (1998), Ulysses in Troilus and Cressida(1998) and Herr Schaaf in A Month in the Country (1999).

With the National Theatre Hurley appeared as Henry Earl of Richmond/Lord Grey in Richard III (1990), as Gentleman in King Lear (1990), Remember This, Wild Oats (1995), The Oedipus Plays, Davison in Mary Stuart (1996), and The Good Person of Szechwan.

Film and TV

His television appearances include David Copperfield in David Copperfield (1986), Prisoner 1 in The Storyteller (1988), Prisoner #1 in The Jim Henson Hour (1989), Ian Harper in Hero Hungry (1990), Ray Murray in The Chief (1994), Colin Hastings in The Bill (2000), Keith Jordan in Peak Practice (2000), Desk Sergeant in The Infinite Worlds of H. G. Wells (2001), and Glyn Hollis in Holby City (2003).

His film roles include Grandpré in Henry V (1989), Blake in Black Pond (2011), and Lavatch in All's Well That Ends Well (2012).

Hurley also wrote the plays House and Shuffling Off which were performed at the New Grove Theatre and also has written two short films, Bruised Fruit and Billy Badmouth.

He plays the role of Barry in Flowers for Kudos on Channel 4


Fee and Application Information

How to Apply

Please click here to apply for September 2018 start. 

Contact for further information. Selected applicants will be invited to auditions in London or wherever Rose Bruford College is holding other auditions around the UK, Europe, Asia and North America.

International Applicants
Please e-mail

2018 entry course fee: 
You will also be required to pay a £25 audition fee for this course.

The Stage Scholarship

1 x scholarship of £8250 will be awarded to cover the course fee. More details about the application process to The Stage Scholarship will be sent upon application to the course. 

Selected applicants will be invited to auditions which will run between March and July 2018. 

We will advise you about the various options available to you.

Course content

TERM 1: The Actor and Foundation Skills (September to December)

 The first term provides a foundation to support both training and future practice in a way that is spontaneous, imaginative and disciplined. Through a series of practical classes and workshops students will work towards release from physical and vocal habits that prevent them from communicating effectively as an actor. We introduce basic Stanislavskian principles through practical exercises that ask students initially to engage imaginatively and responsively without reference to a text. Towards the end of the term specific texts will be introduced which lead to a three week scene study rehearsal process using contemporary playwrights. Students will engage in a detailed interrogation of the text, which will culminate in a workshop performance in one of our studios. Focus of Term one is - self discovery, play, introducing skills and resilience

TERM 2: The Actor and the Audience (January to March)

 The second term will focus on complex text, exploring it through a variety of exercises all designed to focus on reading the play, understanding of its cultural context, exploration of text and character, as the demands of the text require students to move further from themselves. The second term aims to move further from notions of self towards notions of character and role and engage with Shakespearean texts and encouraging an independent and holistic approach to work. There will be regular audition panels with outside directors and will be supported by ongoing classes. Focus of Term Two is – building skills, text, portfolio and next steps.

Overview of Weekly Classes

Your voice is an important tool as an actor and its care and development is a life-long pursuit.   During the course will investigate elements of the vocal progression characteristic of conservatoire and drama school voice training. You will be introduced to the fundamentals of release, alignment, breath, resonance, articulation, and text.  This will serve as a good basis on which to build your self-awareness, improve your vocal technique and to develop your expectations and curiosity for further voice training.

Acting classes in term 1 will introduce basic Stanislavskian principles through practical ‘Studio’ exercises that ask students initially to engage imaginatively and responsively without reference to a text. We will focus on the key actors questions as well as ‘physical actions’ and ‘given circumstances’. We also introduce students to Meisner exercises exploring ‘impulse’ and ‘acting in imaginary circumstances’. Towards the end of the term we will start to apply these ideas to specific contemporary texts, which will lead to a full time, scene study project. In term two we introduce working on a character, looking at; status, objects and endowment, as well as working on the actor’s approach to classical texts. Towards the end of term two you will start a three-week rehearsal period on a Shakespeare play, which is performed in one of our studios.

TV Acting for Camera (London only)
The television and film acting classes offer practical training and advice on what to expect and what is expected of the actor on set.   With real life insight into the industry, students are taken through the process of how to approach the text, get the most out of screenplay readings, what to expect from castings, learn on set etiquette and jargon, practice and improve their acting for camera and assess their performance.   After learning the basics students will participate in casting practice, camera rehearsals and filmed scenes.   The classes will equip students with the skills and knowledge needed for today's TV and film industry and give them the confidence to succeed. 

The first term will explore the singing voice through ensemble work, harmony and improvisation, developing aural skills and building confidence. There will be an overview of the physiology of the voice and an introduction to vocal exercises and warm-ups, addressing postural and vocal habits.

The second term focuses upon individual songs and technique both in class and one-to-one sessions, working towards a suitable audition portfolio. Students are encouraged to research new material and create their own personal vocal warm-up. There will be regular opportunities in class to perform new songs, and regular audition panels with outside directors.

Movement and Ensemble
The focus of the movement work is on self-awareness, physical freedom and an understanding of the body as the physical instrument of the actor.

Through games, movement analysis, and improvisation, the movement classes explore; the essence of presence, anatomy and the alexander technique and expressive movement, including neutral mask work. Awareness of the body in relation to space, rhythm, tension, articulation of the body and release as well as Physical Theatre. The work will focus on the importance of the availability and authenticity of the performer and building the ensemble as well as the creative self.

Audition Preparation and Performance Practice
Students will work on audition speeches, songs and scenes, both classical and contemporary, in preparation for auditioning for either drama school, University or practice for future professional work. These classes focus on choosing and presenting speeches, building a comprehensive audition portfolio as well as professional development. We help students become confident and adept at managing themselves professionally and in written communications, on-line and at audition. We offer classes in increasing personal impact and audition technique as well as providing mock panel auditions in front of both acting staff and professional theatre and casting directors. All students’ receive comprehensive written and verbal feedback throughout the course.

Related Information

The course will be taught by the following Senior Members of the College’s Acting Staff:

Pat O'Toole, Course Director
Colin Ellwood – Acting/Text
Mathieu Bellon- Acting/Improvisation

We also have a range of visiting professionals who are profiled in the Employability and Industry section of this page.

For specific enquiries about the course please e-mail

This course also runs in:


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