Thursday Young Conservatoire — Ages 16–18 Weekly classes in acting technique
A group of students dancing in a studio with large windows


Thursday Young Conservatoire — Ages 16–18

Key Information
  • Suitable for

    Intermediate, ages 16–18

  • Dates

    Thursday 11 January – Thursday 21 March 2024

  • Tuition

    Weekly 2 hour class, 18:00–20:00

  • Location

    Downside Road, Bristol

  • Cost

    £185 per 10 week term or
    £500 for full academic year

Apply Now


Bristol Old Vic Theatre School’s Young Conservatoire is designed specifically for aspiring actors aged 16–18 who wish to pursue a career in theatre, film or television. Our weekly evening classes will introduce you to the fundamentals of acting, movement and voice techniques, adopting the practices taught to students at the UK’s leading drama schools. By joining Young Conservatoire, you’ll deepen your knowledge and begin acquiring the key vocational skills of the professional actor, preparing you for the next steps of your career.

Apply now

Term dates 2024

Spring term, Thur 11 Jan – 21 Mar, 6–8 pm
Half term (no class) Thur 15 Feb

Summer term, Thur 25 Apr – 4 July, 6–8 pm
Half term (no class) Thur 23 May

Autumn term, Thur 3 Oct – 12 Dec, 6–8 pm
Half term (no class) Thur 31 Oct

Fees are £185 per term. You can also book ahead and save by booking the full calendar year for £500.

A student is smiling looking past the camera whilst raising her shoulders. In the background other students are adopting different positions.

What is a conservatoire?

A conservatoire is a small and specialist organisation that trains students for a career in the performing arts through intensive, practical tuition. At Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, we specialise in drama but there are other conservatoires who specialise in music, and some who team both disciplines. Attending drama school is an alternative option to going to university – you’ll still receive a degree, but you will spend your time learning your craft through practice. Attending a conservatoire drama school is how many of the UK’s leading actors honed their craft and launched their career. The award-winning film stars Olivia Colman, Sir Daniel Day-Lewis, Naomie Harris and Patrick Stewart all trained at BOVTS.

A student in a sweatshirt is facing the camera and pointing towards two students whose backs are turned

Who is Young Conservatoire for?

Young Conservatoire is for anybody aged 16–18 who is considering a career as a professional actor. Actors come from all sorts of backgrounds and there is not typical student at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. We are looking for those who have a passion for performance, a willingness to experiment with their craft, and are aspiring to train professionally after finishing at school or college. Young Conservatoire is not an alternative to school or college; because it runs on evenings throughout term time, it is the perfect option to sit alongside your qualifications. 

Two students in a studio setting are stretching towards the camera

How do I apply?

Entry to Young Conservatoire is through audition and you can choose whether to audition with us online or in person. There is no audition fee.

You will need to prepare a two-minute speech from a published play and we recommend that you choose a character who is similar in age to you. The auditioners will have a short discussion with you afterwards and can answer any questions that you might have about training as part of Young Conservatoire.

The dates for auditions for spring term 2024 are:

Wednesday, 29 Nov between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm
Thursday, 30 Nov between 09:00 am and 5:00 pm

Sunday, 3 Dec between 09:30 am and 5:00 pm
Thursday, 14 Dec between 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm
Wednesday, 3 Jan between 5:30 pm and 8:00 pm

Students from the Youth Summer School performing

What will I be doing?

Much like the first year at drama school, you will cover a wide range of fundamentals in acting, including specialist classes in acting basics, movement, and voice work. The classes that you take will develop throughout the ten weeks of each term and you’ll begin to acquire an understanding of the etiquettes and practices of the industry. Classes are taught by the course leader with occasional masterclasses provided by the staff who teach our degree course students.

Your course leader

Katy Carmichael

Katy is an experienced actor and director best known for her roles in Channel 4’s BAFTA-nominated Spaced, BBC’s Waterloo Road and Casualty, and ITV’s Coronation Street. She has worked in almost every genre of television and film, from drama to comedy, soaps to children’s TV. On stage, she has performed leading roles at the Liverpool Everyman, Manchester’s Royal Exchange and Bristol Old Vic, as well as touring internationally with Kneehigh theatre. She has directed award-winning original theatre in Bristol, Edinburgh, London and New York. Kate is also a highly experienced acting teaching and, alongside her work at BOVTS, teaches at the BFI Film Academy and is on the National Youth Theatre audition panel.

What our students say...

  • “The culture at BOVTS is encouraging, respectful, welcoming and empowering.”

    Lindy, short course participant
  • “You gave me the skills to improve and to increase my confidence in a friendly and supportive environment.”

    Jo, short course participant
  • “Rigorous, exciting, challenging and fulfilling – I highly recommend this course to anyone who is looking to find their feet in the world of theatre.”

    Short course participant, 2019
N'Dea in Henry VI
In just one year the MFA programme has given me the confidence in my artistry and the tools to work professionally that I lacked prior to my training. N'Dea Miles, MFA Professional Acting Student