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Course overview

This advanced, intensive eight-week course enables you to deepen your understanding of Shakespeare's text through rehearsal and performance. You'll explore essential acting skills, text analysis and scene study under the guidance of RADA's expert tutors, extending the the range of your work, uncovering tensions that block development and working on strategies to remove them.

During the first six weeks, you will have classes in physical performance, Alexander Technique, stage fighting, period dance, choral singing, voice, character in text, sonnets, monologues and scenes. Participants work in groups of approximately 14, and in smaller groups for some skills classes and workshops.

The course includes presentations, individual tutorials, and one to one feedback with your tutors. The course will culminate in a workshop production of a Shakespeare play in a RADA theatre space, rehearsed with your director throughout the final 10 days of the course. All presentations are in-house and not external showcase productions.

Classes are taught, and rehearsals conducted, by RADA tutors and distinguished directors and teachers from the profession. The course is not a casual undertaking: total commitment to punctuality, discipline and preparation is required from every participant.

What will I learn on this course?

  • The tools to be able to handle Shakespearean text with confidence.
  • The opportunity to apply those tools in presentation situations, developing both solo skills and ensemble work.
  • An immersion in the Elizabethan world.

Entry requirements:

  • Selection by audition. You must have previous experience of acting training at professional, graduate or undergraduate level. Please see the application form for more information.
  • Participants must be over 18 and have fluent, confident use and knowledge of the English language.

Who is this course suitable for?

  • Professional actors looking to learn, refine or refresh classical performance skills.
  • Students from performing arts courses who seek further training in Shakespeare.
  • Actors looking for a ‘workout’.
Go for it. It’s one of the best things that I could have done for myself as an artist.
Lakeisha Houston, 2019 Acting Shakespeare participant


  • Classes generally take place between 9am and 5pm from Monday to Friday. In the latter part of the course, some sessions each week may end at 8pm and extra rehearsals will take place on Saturdays. This course requires flexibility and participants must be available for all sessions. You will be provided with a detailed timetable on the first day.
  • Classes are not optional; participants are expected to treat these as professional rehearsal calls.
  • Punctuality is essential; a certificate stating the minimum number of contact hours is awarded on successful completion of the course.

How to apply


Please complete an application form at the link above. You will need to include your CV or resumé and a reference from either a tutor or director on your suitability to participate in this course. Applications are reviewed and offers are made on a rolling basis; there is no deadline for applications as such. We would therefore advise you to submit your application as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.


Auditions are via self-tape; please submit links to your audition pieces within the application form. You should prepare two pieces from Shakespeare, neither of which should exceed three minutes in length. We will contact you to let you know whether or not you have been accepted onto the course. In some instances a waiting list place may be offered.

Course information

What are the Terms and Conditions of my booking?

You can read the full Terms and Conditions here.

Will there be anything I need to prepare before the course starts?

You will be required to prepare a Shakespeare speech of no more than 2 minutes for the first day of the course. You may use one of the speeches from your self-tape audition.

Is there any work to do outside of class time?

Some preparation and reading will be required between classes.

What’s included in the fee?

The fee covers the cost of your tuition for the times advertised above and any materials essential to the course (and not specified here as materials you need to provide yourself). The fee does not include any meals or accommodation.

RADA cannot provide written references for Short Course participants.

What materials or equipment do I need?

You will need a copy of the Complete Works of Shakespeare, clothes that are loose and comfortable, allowing for maximum flexibility and trainers or soft soled shoes. For the presentations you will need a white shirt or blouse (not a T-shirt); dark trousers or leggings (not jeans): for female roles, you may choose to wear a practice skirt (black, full, and ankle-length). A stout, low shoe or black ankle boot may also be useful. 

I have a disability or access requirement – can reasonable adjustments be made?

We are able to make reasonable adjustments to our training where possible. Many of our courses are highly practical. Most involve movement and some may include work on the floor. You may also be asked to read from various texts. If you have access requirements and/or require more information on access and facilities in our RADA buildings, please email

Are there any funding or payment plans available?

There are no RADA Scholarships available for Short Courses. We cannot offer payment plans, and full payment is required to secure your place on a course.

Can RADA provide accommodation?

We are unable to provide accommodation for RADA Short Courses.

Please note that in the event of cancellation, RADA can accept no liability for any costs you may already have incurred; and we strongly recommend you purchase insurance cover for any travel or accommodation booked before the start of the course.

Will I get a certificate at the end of the course?

Yes. A Certificate of Completion is available for this course. Certificates are awarded to participants who had no unexcused absences or lateness and operated within the obligations laid out in the Terms and Conditions.

Does the course count towards University credits?

There are no University Credits associated with this course.

In the case of participants who are attending courses at universities in North America (or elsewhere), it is a matter for each university or college to decide whether to include the RADA Acting Shakespeare course as part of their students' accreditation process.

If you have any questions regarding this course or further enquiries regarding the content please email

What is the attendance policy?

Our attendance policy can be read within our Terms and Conditions. 100% attendance and punctuality are expected for all classes.

How do I register for an in-person course?

You will be providing most of the information we need when you fill in your application form or information form.

On the first in-person day of your course, you will be asked to arrive at RADA up to 30 minutes before the start of your first session, and you need to bring a copy of your passport, and, if applicable, evidence of your right to join a short course in the UK.