If you are considering a career in acting, studying this subject in college may be a good strategic move. As is evident from the success of celebrities who attended acting or drama schools – Meryl Streep and Marlon Brando being two very prominent examples – a master of arts, with an emphasis on performing arts, can often give a head start when it comes to pursuing acting as a career.
In fact, according to U.S. News and World Report, many business schools – including the Sloan School of Management at MIT, Tuck Business School at Dartmouth College, and Columbia’s Business school – now require students to take a few acting classes to help them improve their chances of success in the real world. If business students can benefit from acting programs, then surely budding actors can as well. In addition to the actual curriculum that centers on acting, you can benefit from simply having a degree, even if you do not end up in the film industry.
You can expect to learn a wide variety of skills when you pursue a Masters of Acting. For example, The New School for Drama offers a Master of Fine Arts in Theatre. The degree strives to improve not only the acting skills, but also movement and voice abilities of each student. With this type of program, you can expect to be involved in a number of theatrical productions throughout the years, often with a showcase right before the degree is awarded.
Such programs can also teach practical skills that may apply to various careers. For instance, you will learn to work with large teams – a valuable skill considering the largely labor-intensive process of film/theater production that compels actors to work with professionals from various backgrounds. Additionally, you will be given a lot of responsibility as you work to put on several productions throughout the degree program. This can translate well to both the dramatic and production sides of the entertainment business.
Not everyone will be accepted to the acting degree program of their choice, so you should be aware of the standards you will be expected to meet for the most prestigious acting schools. According to Yale School of Drama, students should be “talented and committed individuals who possess an active intelligence and strong imagination”. Just as it is with most performance-arts, most acting schools will require you to pass an acting audition to be accepted. Of course, each school has its own individual requirements, and some are more selective than others. Learning the requirements of the top acting schools will give you the best chance of being accepted, as will adhering to every deadline.
If you are thinking about a career in film, you should consider obtaining a Master’s of Acting. Not only will it arm you with the tools and skillset necessary to break into the film or theater industry, but also offer ample opportunities to network with production houses, fellow actors, and producers. Further, as evinced by the Sloan School of Management’s initiative with theater, it will also set you up for alternative careers where a master’s degree may boost employment opportunities. Considering the competitive nature of the acting industry, an investment in a Master’s of Acting degree can be the difference between potential success and possible failure.
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