NIDA introduces The Singing Actor into famous acting degree

12 April 2019

Photo: Those who choose to, can engage in discipline-specific training in singing, movement and dancing. (Photo: Maja Baska)

NIDA’s world-famous actor training course will offer a Singing Actor stream for students to choose in 2020. The move recognises the increasing opportunities for actors to take lead roles in music theatre productions as several NIDA alumni take up successful lead roles in musical productions.

‘NIDA acting training has a strong base in classical and contemporary techniques (based on Stanislavski’s principles) to equip students with a multitude of ways to approach performance,’ said NIDA Head of Acting John Bashford. ‘It enables all students to attain the highest level of excellence in acting for stage and screen, musical theatre, or storytelling through song. Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) course can now choose between The Actor or The Singing Actor stream throughout their course. All the students study acting, movement, music and voice, but those who choose to, can engage in discipline-specific training in singing, movement and dancing.’

NIDA Head of Music Andrew Ross said: ‘Storytelling through song is a skill increasingly in demand for our contemporary theatrical landscape. The Singing Actor stream allows the opportunity for some students to audition for and undertake a course of study that highlights and expands aspects of the training for actors who possess a high level of vocal competence.’

‘These singing actors will be members of the BFA Acting cohort and will undertake the majority of their training alongside their peers whilst allowing some weekly timetabled classes to maintain and develop their already high level singing skills. Additional movement and dance training will expose these students to current musical theatre styles and encourage innovation in devised and new forms of Australian musical theatre making.’

NIDA’s Executive Director Conservatoire Dr Amanda Morris said that the move responds to an ever-changing performance industry. ‘NIDA students already work with leading industry experts in their field, and the Singing Actor stream will not be any different, with students working with guest directors, choreographers and musical directors.’

‘We are excited to add The Singing Actor into the existing study options for NIDA students,’ she said. ‘NIDA already has a very successful short course, the one-year vocational Diploma in Musical Theatre. The new Singing Actor stream in the Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) course provides an avenue for performers to engage with rigorous and in-depth training, which will see Australian artists take an even higher profile in the music theatre industry.’

Applications open for NIDA’s Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) course on 1 July 2019. To register your interest in the course and for information about auditions, visit

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