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Conservatoire for Dance and Drama

School Overview

    • Founded:
    • 2001
    • Size:
    • Small (<5000 students)
    • Type:
    • Public
    • Category:
    • Universities, colleges
      Art institutes
    • Specialization:
    • N/A
    • Climate:
    • Temperate
    • Location:
    • Tavistock Square, London, England, United Kingdom
    • Phone:
    • +442073875101
    • Email Address:
    • N/A
    • Setting:
    • Urban

The History of Conservatoire for Dance and Drama

The Conservatoire for Dance and Drama is a higher education institution in the United Kingdom. It was founded in 2001 to bring together a number of schools providing higher-level vocational training in the performing arts. There are six member schools and two affiliate schools. 

The Conservatoire offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses including dance (ballet, contemporary, choreography), drama (acting, directing, writing), production arts (stage and screen), and circus arts.

Each of the Conservatoire schools is a separate and distinct institution that employs its own teaching staff and remains legally autonomous. At the same time, students are registered jointly with the Conservatoire and the individual school.

The Conservatoire operates through a series of committees and working groups to determine policy for the schools as a whole. The schools themselves are involved at every level of deliberation within the Conservatoire, enabling them to share knowledge and expertise for the benefit of staff, students and the wider creative world that they serve.

The Conservatoire was placed eighth in the Guardian's University Guide 2019: Drama & Dance table.

Academic Highlights

Courses usually involve more than 35 hours per week of supervised contact and a teaching year of at least 33 weeks. Teaching staff is employed by the individual schools, which provide their own range of resources and facilities. The level of support given to students is high, and examples of extra specialist support that might be provided would include body conditioning and access to physiotherapists and osteopaths.

Life in Conservatoire for Dance and Drama

The Conservatoire schools exist to train young artists who will match the world’s best and on entering their professions, shape the future of dance, drama and circus arts.

The Conservatoire schools are small, specialist and vocational training institutions with international reputations for high-quality delivery in their respective fields. Each school has a different but complementary approach to training a new generation of artists. The Conservatoire enables the schools to work together, whilst celebrating the diverse ethos and cultures of the individual schools.

School Ranking

Ranked the UK's No 1 performing arts conservatoire for student satisfaction in the 2015 National Student Survey, students at our schools value the immersive experience of conservatoire training and its unparalleled access to the performing arts industries.


All applicants who wish to train as an actor, dancer or circus artist in any of the Conservatoire schools and meet that school’s criteria will be offered an audition. Those who wish to train in stage management and technical theatre will be invited to attend an interview.

Each of the schools offers formal audition dates every year. It is not unusual for there to be a round of auditions, followed by call-backs and interviews for the successful applicant. In very exceptional instances the school may make you an immediate offer of a place. You may be given an audition slot at short notice, sometimes as little as two weeks, so you need to be ready to audition as soon as you make your application.

Almost all of the schools have alternative venues in the UK and overseas where you can arrange to have your audition.

Notable Alumni

Sir Richard Alston CBE is a British choreographer. Sarah Caroline Olivia Sinclair, CBE, better known as Olivia Colman, is an English actress. Naomie Melanie Harris OBE is an English actress.

Acceptance Rate

Between 83 and 98 %

Other Campuses
No other campus yet.



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