RADA Audition, Recall, & Experience | UK Drama School Tips | Informative & Chatty Video


– Hi we’re Joel and Lia – And this video is all about
our experiences at RADA. So, you may or may
not know that RADA stands for The Royal
Academy of Dramatic Art. – Yeah.
– And, that’s where Joel and I met.
– Yeah it is. It’s one of the top drama
schools in the world. It’s where people go
to train as actors, or even stage set designers,
– Stage managers. – Stage managers, anything
to do with theater really, but mainly, it’s well
known for acting, isn’t it? – Yeah. So, Joel and I met
there back in 2011, 2012? – Yeah.
– And gosh, that feels like ages ago now.
– Doesn’t it? – And we just wanted to
make a video explaining the audition process,
– Mm hmm – What it was like getting
in, our experiences whilst we were there,
– Yeah. – and life after RADA.
– Yeah, post RADA. (laughing) – Just for anyone who’s
interested in that. (laughing) – We get a lot of questions
– Yeah. – About it in the
comments, so we thought why not make a video on it.
– Mm. – Yeah it’s been big
part of our life, and The Royal Academy
of Dramatic Art is like quite a big British
thing, so hopefully, even if you’re not
interested in acting, you might be interested in
learning a bit about it. – So lets start off with
the audition process. So, getting into RADA.
– Yeah. Yeah.
– I don’t know about you Joel, but I actually
auditioned for about six or seven drama
schools drama schools. – Yeah.
Yeah definitely. – So there’s loads of other ones like some in London; LAMDA
– Yeah. – Guildhall School
of Music and Drama. – Mm hmm.
I auditioned for ones outside of London as well,
– Same. – like Royal Welsh, GSA.
– Yeah. – I even auditioned for
the Bristol Old Vic. – Oh did you? Yeah me too.
– Yeah. So, there’s some amazing
schools that you can go to, luckily, we got into
the best one. (laughing) – Yeah, ca-ching (laughing)
– Ca-ching. (laughing) – It is very
difficult to get in. So, I think around five or six thousand people
audition every year. There’s only 30 places
on the BA course, 30 places on the
foundation course. So there’s 60 places all in all. – Yeah.
– Out of about five or six thousand, so
that’s like 1% I think. – Yeah, so there’s a
first round audition, – Mm hmm.
Which you do, and you are asked to do a…
God it’s so long ago now. A contemporary monologue,
– Yeah. – and a classical monologue.
– Uh huh. – So that might be something
from a Shakespeare play, and then a contemporary
monologue, anything
from, I think it’s 20th century onwards.
– Okay, yeah. – We ought to check that though. – Yeah, so some
schools are different. So some will say your
contemporary monologue has to be from a play post 1970, but I know that
some are just from the 20th century onwards, so… I guess my biggest tip
for preparing for audition for drama school is
really, thoroughly read what each school is
after, ’cause they’re all after something slightly different.
– Really. – So I know Central, you
have to pick a Shakespeare from their list of
Shakespeare speeches. – I remember that, yeah.
– And the amount of people that turn up to that
audition and are like, “Oh, I didn’t know I had
to pick one from the list, I’m just using the same one that I’m using for
every other school” and they’re just like
– Yeah. – immediately, “No,
you’re not getting in here because you clearly, are
an idiot”. (laughing) – Do the research, yeah.
– Yeah. – I think my tip would be
in your speeches, just know who you’re speaking to.
– Yeah. – I remember like doing,
I think my modern speech and they were like, “So who’s
the character speaking to?” and I was like, “Her mum?”. Got recalled, and I was like, “re-read, re-read”. (laughing)
– Quick. (laughing) – But yeah, I got
really lucky and um, my Shakespeare
audition, I played like a 40 year old woman.
– Yeah. – Which when I
then got into RADA I found out is like a big no-no, like play your age,
don’t be afraid to play Juliet, don’t
be afraid to like, – Yeah.
– take on a character that you could actually be cast
for in the real world, in the working world of acting. – Oh definitely, and they’re
always gonna be overdone. So with… especially
with Shakespeare like. – Yeah.
– If you’re thinking, “I can’t do Romeo because
that’s so overdone”, all of them are overdone,
these audition panelists – Yeah.
– have heard all of the Shakespeare
speeches, all of the time. So, yeah.
– Thousands of times. – The most important thing
is that you like the speech, and that it’s, like Leah said,
within your casting bracket. – Yeah, I was like, I
played like someone from The Winter’s Tale
who is like 40. I’m so bad at
remembering this stuff, – Yeah. – because it was
how long ago now? – So it’s seven years ago. – That’s insane.
– Oh my gosh, seven years. – I think I still know
some of my speech, I did Edmund, from King Lear. I remember thinking
about pentameter, like “What studied torments
tyrant hast for me”, and I was just thinking
like, I did so much work and prep into
those speeches. – That’s the thing
Shakespeare isn’t some like stuffy poetry,
– Yeah. – this actually means
stuff, and so it’s like, – Yeah.
– you just need to identify with the words as
much as you identify with your contemporary
monologue. – Yeah, I remember my
coach at the time was like, “Right, translate that into
how Leah would say it”. – Yeah.
– And my words were coming out as swear words like, “What are
you gonna beeping do to me, you beep idiot” and I did it
like that and he was like, “Great do that, but with
Shakespeare’s words”. So I was like, “Cool”, so I did
and it was full of attitude. – Did you ever get any
really weird redirection at drama school?
– Yeah at Guildhall… If anyone is auditioning
there, they just made me kinda like go right up to
them, like pull out… Like sit like this close
– Yeah. – and just say the words.
– Oh right, yeah. – Like…
– That’s so Guildhall. – “Just say it, just say it”. Like don’t act, they were like
– Just say it. “just say the words to me”. – This is the thing,
you get to know what each school is like,
so there I was like, – Yeah.
– “That is so Guildhall”. Just to do nothing.
– That is so Guildhall. Do nothing, no acting.
– Like they get you to look into an imaginary window full
of like cakes or something and – Or like an aquarium, mine was. – Yeah and they’re after
you, just like, looking and not doing…
– Yeah. So it’s like a girl
in mine who was like, looking at all the fish
like “oh my God, a shark” – It’s so funny.
– And then… I think what they were after was just,
– Yeah. – Oh just look at them.
– Natural. – Just be natural and look
at the fish in the aquarium. – But it feels like a
trick question doesn’t it? Because you think, ’cause
it’s an acting school, they want to see you act,
but most of them don’t, they just want to see
you live in the moment, and just like, be
present and…. – Sorry I’m still
looking at the aquarium. – Are you (laughing)
– (laughing) – I was just like trying
to do my aquarium, like I definitely
would not get into drama school if I
auditioned again now. I’m like a terrible
actress. (laughing) So that’s a bit about
the audition process. So for RADA, there’s four
rounds for the BA course, and for the foundation, I
actually had three auditions, so I had a BA recall and
then a foundation recall. So three auditions in total,
and then the final round, you spend like, quite
a lot of time there. – Yeah, you do workshops,
– Workshops. – Interviews….
– Yeah, it was full on. – Yeah, it was really scary.
– I remember my interview question from
the head of our course, and I was just, agh, it honestly
nearly gave me the …. – (laughing) – I was just like, you
know when someone like digs you to the core – Oh yeah. – When they ask you a question that you’re so insecure about, and I was just like, “ooohhhh” and he got that,
– He loves that. – just from looking at my
CV, I was like, “Christ”. – He loved that though,
he’s quite scary, scary isn’t the word,
– No. – But quite like…
– Intense. – Intense.
– Yeah. – And I remember leaving
feeling like, “He hates me”, and Bridget was on
the panel as well, and I was like “She loves
me, but he hates me”, and then luckily I got a
phone call a few hours later to be like, “I’d love yo
have you on the course”. – Hours later?
– Yeah. – Oh well mine was not.
– Was yours… oh wasn’t it? – Yeah I must not
have been a top pick. Actually I don’t remember,
but it definitely was not hours later.
– Oh okay. – It must have been days.
– Yeah, ’cause I remember I went from my final
recall for that, and then I had an audition
for a Play Station commercial. – Oh.
– So I like ran from RADA all the way to the Play
Station commercial, – Exciting.
– And then as I came out of that audition,
that went terribly, I then got a phone call
and it was RADA being like, – Saying you got in.
– “I want to offer you a place” – So then you call
home, and you’re like, “Good news is I got into RADA, bad news I didn’t get
Play Station”. (laughing) – Yeah. (laughing)
Didn’t get Play Station but… – Well I suppose it depends
like they would have had to have seen everyone before,
– Yeah. – But mine was certainly
not the same day. – That’s the thing though
also, don’t go based on what your friends have
heard or haven’t heard. – Yeah.
– Because that’s so difficult, like I heard a few hours later, – Yeah. Days later,
– Leah heard days later, and we both still got a place. That was the worst
thing, when you’ve both auditioned for a
school, and your friend… – If you know people
and you’re chatting. – Yeah and they’ve already
heard and you’re like, “Oh that means I
haven’t got a place”. – Yeah it mean…anything
– It doesn’t mean anything. Just forget about it. – It’s just their admin.
– Right, should we move on to our time at RADA?
– Yeah. So, when we were there…
I remember getting there, and being like, “Right, where’s
freshers then?” (laughing) It was just like,
there’s no such thing, it’s just straight
into the work. – Isn’t that crazy? It was so intense
from the start. – On the offset, yeah.
– So you have so many courses, obviously, acting classes,
I think we had six hours of acting classes a week.
– Yeah. – I had two slots
of three hours. – Six hours of
like, core acting. – Yeah.
– Stanislavski based like, method work.
– Yeah Meisner… – And then, on top of that
you’ve got voice classes, you’ve got movement classes,
– Movement classes. – You’ve got stage co… not
stage combat, what did we have? I dunno, things like clowning,
or dancing, period dance. – Yeah that was so cool.
– Like, all sorts. (laughing) – That was the best. (laughing) There were so many
funny classes. – Yeah.
Sight reading. – Sight reading.
– You have very specific classes as well
for sight reading. So reading out a script, cold, when you haven’t seen it
before, you’re just reading as soon as you’ve seen it.
– Cold read. It’s nothing against
like, the school, well I guess it kind of is now, but one thing I
didn’t really enjoy, was feeling like some people
were not 100% committed. They just weren’t
putting in what other people were putting in.
– Yeah. – So there was a
bit of a divide, there was like a group of
people that I felt were just like, there for the jokes. – Definitely, I think that
is a downside of RADA, probably other schools as well,
but lots of people do get in because they have money,
– Just cruising. – or they’ve got contacts, and
I really disagree with that. And I don’t think, not everyone
gets in for those reasons, clearly, ’cause (laughing)
– Yeah.(laughing) – We don’t have either.
– Contacts, or cash. – I think one thing that I
found really difficult was that when I was at RADA, I
found so much confidence in being at RADA, and like I would
walk to school everyday like being so happy that I’d got in, and walking through
those doors being like, “Oh my gosh I’ve worked
so hard to get here” and like, “I deserve this”,
– Yeah. – and like, RADA
was my confidence, it was like, I am at RADA,
and then as soon as I left, suddenly I wasn’t
at RADA anymore, and that was really crushing,
’cause then I was like I found all of my confidence
in the name of the school, – Yeah.
– and like what do I do now? And so, actually my
advice would be also if you do get in to
any of these schools, don’t find confidence
in being at school, or being in this little bubble. – It’s a safety net.
– It is, yeah. – From the industry.
– Yeah, yeah it really is. – Because once you’re out,
you’re just like everyone else. – Yeah, and no one really cares. Like having RADA on your
CV is great but ultimately, – No one really cares.
– no one really cares. It’s the work that
speaks for itself, which sounds so
pretentious, but it is… – Yeah, they’ll just be like, “Well cool, what have you done? Let me see some of your acting, let me see what you’ve
done, what do you wanna do?” No one really cares, so yeah if you’re getting anxious about what name is gonna
be on your CV… – Yeah, then don’t.
– I can’t remember the last time any
one said to me like, “Where did you train?” Life since RADA, I didn’t really take my validation
from the school, but I certainly did miss
it when I wasn’t there. – Yeah.
– And, I just sort of remember just trying to keep really busy. ‘Cause suddenly, if you
think about it like this, you’re goin from having
like ten hour days to having nothing on, unless
you immediately get a job, or you start doing
other sorts of work that’s not acting work
to fill up your time. Maybe like a year after that,
this YouTube channel was born. – Yeah.
– ‘Cause out of boredom. Just because we wanted something
to be doing. (laughing) And, yeah, I guess
here we are now. (both laughing) But there’s been so many
other things as well, Like, it’s not
just this channel, so many other projects
going on outside of this. But um, yeah that’s
kind of, my experience. – Yeah definitely.
I think YouTube is a good vehicle
for acting as well, I know lots of my actor
friends are sort of quite envious that we
have this platform. Because it is, in the industry
now it is changing a bit, either, y’know for the good
or for worse it’s like, having an online
presence is kind of… – Essential.
– essential, really. So, I’m really pleased
with what we’ve done. At first I didn’t feel
very please with it, I was really embarrassed of it, and I felt like people
judged us for it, ’cause they were like,
“Oh, you trained at RADA and you’re an actor,
but you’re on YouTube. You’re filming yourself,
what are you doing”. – Yeah.
– But now it’s sort of changed and people are really
interested in it, and it really helps.
– Yeah definitely. At first, we were like, we
though oh my God RADA, if like the people and the teachers
at out school ever found this they’d be like, what
on earth are you doing? So I guess if you’re sitting
there right now watching this and you’re thinking
well I haven’t gotten
into drama school, and I don’t really know
what I’m doing with my life, consider like,
starting something. Like, start something yourself, write something, team
up with other actors or people that you get
on with really well, that you have really
great relationships with, and try and create something, maybe in a theater,
maybe online. Think about what you’ve
got available to you. – Yeah, oh definitely. There’s no excuse anymore
not to do anything. It’s so easy to put on a play, and rent like a
space above a pub and put on a play and invite
people to come and watch, and it’s so easy to just
get you your iPhone, and film a video, or a
sketch to put online. Like there isn’t
any excuse anymore. So actually get out there
and do something I would say. – No one, and you hear this
from commissioners all the time, they say like, “I just
want to see something, like film something
on your iPhone, I don’t care if it’s
not on a fancy camera, just do something so I can see”, and then opportunities
will come, and I think that’s like…
what a gift, like that we exist in this time where we’ve
got access to the internet and to like putting
yourself on this platform. Like 25 years ago,
we would have just left that drama
school and been like, “Right, we’ll wait for
the phone to ring then”. – Oh definitely.
I think what made me sad at the beginning
about YouTube was that I was like, well none of
these successful actors like started on YouTube, but that’s
’cause it wasn’t a thing. And I’ve heard
interviews since then with a few different
actors that said if they were new actors,
newly graduated now, then they would
be doing YouTube, or they would be doing,
like creating their work and putting it online. – That’s quite a long
video for you guys. I know a lot of our subscribers don’t subscribe for
drama school talk, but some of you have
asked about this, so we wanted to
give you this video and if anyone is
new to this channel, and they’ve just found us
through this RADA video, please check out
our other videos. If you dig far back
enough, you will find some old comedy sketches
that we used to make on here. – Yeah. – Subscribe if
you’re interested, we make videos about
British culture, all things British, and yeah… – There’s some accent tutorials,
so you might find them. – You might find
some accent tutorials useful for an audition. – Yeah, so thanks for watching, don’t forget to leave
your experiences below if you’ve been auditioning
for drama schools. I’d love to hear
any horror stories, or just your process,
where you’re at and we’ll try to
respond to all of them if you’ve got any
more questions. – And if you want
to be anonymous, just create a fake account
and write a comment ’cause we’d love
to hear, honestly. – Yeah, no definitely,
we love it. – Alright, speak soon.
– See ya, bye. – Bye.

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