The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) is a vocational training establishment which equips student actors, stage managers and technical craft specialists for careers at the highest level in theatre, television, film and radio.
A high student/staff ratio ensures that the best creative and technical skills can be taught at an intensive level. The teaching is enhanced by work with visiting alumni, professional guest directors, designers and skilled practitioners who also have active careers outside the Academy.
Founded in 1904 by Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree, RADA continues to strengthen its reputation as a foremost centre of excellence. Due to an ambitious estate strategy lasting five years, students now enjoy training in award winning, state-of-the-art buildings in the main Gower Street and adjacent Chenies Street premises.
The combined premises provide three, purpose built, in-house theatres, teaching studios, technical workshops, sound studio/control rooms, wardrobe and electrics teaching rooms, library, common rooms, catering facilities and Foyer Bar which is open to the general public. The Academy stages up to six student productions each term which are open to the general public.
The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art was a founding affiliate of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama in 2001. Nicholas Barter, formerly the Academy’s Principal, was one of the founding Joint Principals of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama. Edward Kemp, the Academy's Director from 2008, was appointed a Joint Principal of the Conservatoire in 2009.
Famous alumni include Richard Attenborough; Kenneth Branagh; Ralph Fiennes; Anthony Hopkins; John Hurt; Clive Owen; Alan Rickman; Sheila Hancock, Jane Horrocks; Glenda Jackson; Imelda Staunton; to name just a few. Recent acting graduates have undertaken a wide range of professional work both here and abroad including for the National Theatre, BBC, ITV, Cheek By Jowl, London Bubble Company, Old Vic and the RSC.
Stage management graduates work in the Royal Opera House, British Youth Opera, Derby Playhouse, Royal National Theatre, Lyric Theatre, Battersea Arts Centre and many other organisations.
Access for disabled people
RADA welcomes applications from disabled people and offers places solely on the basis of potential and suitability for a career in any of the areas we teach. Applicants are encouraged to inform the School of any disability or condition as early as possible so that the School can make appropriate arrangements to meet their needs at audition and during the programme.
RADA’s premises at Gower Street and in Chenies street are fully accessible for wheelchair users.