Acting classes are a great investment for an actor but how much do acting classes cost? How much do you have to spend to get a quality education in acting?
When I began as an actor, I wanted to get a formal education in acting. May be an acting degree or diploma course. But I was not in a position to do so and had to go through different workshops and short-acting classes to actually learn the craft. That’s how I know how much different acting classes cost.
An average acting class might cost you between $150-$2000 and if you hire an acting coach it costs $40-$100 per hour. And an acting degree or diploma will cost around $20,000-$60,000 per year.
Go through the entire post to learn the cost that you will have to pay depending on the course you want to do and where you want to.
You Might Also Like:
- Seven Acting Exercises For Two Actors To Do At Home
- Stella Adler Technique of Acting: An Overview
- Four Meisner Acting Exercises Every Actor Must Do
How Much Do Acting Classes Cost Depending On Different Courses?
Let’s look at in detail how much an acting class costs depending on different factors.
The first factor is the duration of the course. Longer is the course, costlier it is. That is why you will see the cost of the one-year degree is more than $50,000. And 1-2 week workshops cost only a few hundred dollars.
The duration of the classes itself varies depending type of training you need. If you want full-fledged training you can go for a two-year degree or one-year diploma program in acting. A degree course from a reputed institute would cost you between $40,000-60,000 per year.
The NYU Tisch School of the Arts has a tuition fee of $63,000 for a year. And a school much close to Hollywood, UCLA, charges a tuition fee of $16,000 per year for California residents and $32,000 per year for non-residents. This is just tuition there will other fees as well depending on the requirements of the course.
You will have to consider the cost of living in that city in addition to tuition fees. If you are moving from other cities you have to add the cost of living too like rent, food, travel, and other amenities.
Cities like New York and Los Angeles have a higher cost of living compared to other cities in the USA or Canada. Unfortunately, these cities have some of the best acting classes. Just look at this chart below to get an idea about the cost of living in cities where you can find some good quality acting classes.
|City||Rent (per month)||Food||Utilities (per month)|
|Los Angeles||$1300-$3500 (1bhk)||$20-$50||$220-$300|
|New York||$2000-$3000 (1bhk)||$20-50||$220-$300|
Type Of Course
In addition to the location and duration, the type of acting class you choose also differs a lot. The acting classes are offered by educational institutions, media houses, theaters, and individual acting coaches.
Depending on the type the cost of acting classes will differ. Usually, the institutions will charge you much higher compared to others. However, with institutions, you have a chance to win scholarships which will ultimately make your course cost-free.
Media houses are generally the private entities that train people for their own projects. They do offer acting classes but they are mostly diplomas or certification courses. And the acting classes cost can be really high. Even higher than the education institutions.
I like the third type which is getting trained by individual acting coaches. Most highly experienced and popular acting gurus run their own courses. They generally cost less and you get to learn the craft from the best in the business. The cost can be between $500-$6000 depending on the type of training you do with them.
How Much Do Acting Classes Cost In Los Angeles?
If you want to learn acting from the best, you have to live in a place where actors live. And that is Los Angeles. I know you can say New York too. If you want to see your name on the large screen, I would suggest going to Los Angeles.
You will be overwhelmed by the number of acting classes in Los Angeles. From inexpensive to most expensive acting schools are available in Los Angeles. You can sign up for an acting class at $50 per class and also $100 per class. And if you go for the reputed schools like New York Film Academy you can join it for $20,000 – $30,000 per year.
Here are some of the acting classes cost for popular drama schools in Los Angeles and their tuition fees:
- The American Academy of Dramatic Arts – $36,480 per year
- American Musical and Dramatic Academy – $41,660 per year
- California Institute of the Arts – $52,850 per year
- The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute – $19,650 per year
- New York Film Academy – $14,145 per Semester
- The Sanford Meisner Center – $275 per month
- Stella Adler Academy of Acting & Theatre – $18,800
- Theatre of Arts – $19,800.00 per year
- USC School of Dramatic Arts – $47,880 per year
This is a very small list but it includes the most reputed acting school in Los Angeles. If you are a beginner and want to create a strong base for acting you should consider one of these schools.
I have just shown the tuition fee for the acting school. There are plenty of other expenses that you will have to consider like admission fees, books, student medical insurance, housing, etc.
By this number, you can see that acting classes in Los Angeles costs between $20,000 – $40,000 per year.
How Much Are Online Acting Classes?
And if you are not ready to move yet and want to take advantage of online acting classes, nowadays there are plenty of good options. There several online courses offered by good coaches and popular actors with tons of working experience behind them.
If you are not sure or you don’t have time and money to actually go through full-fledged training, you can opt for online acting classes.
But how much is online acting classes?
Well, you find online acting classes are available for as low as $9 on websites like Udemy. But if you opt for subscription-based online classes like Masterclass you can expect prices around $9-$15 per month. And if you go for intensive online acting classes they might cost you around $350 for 4-week training.
Personally, I prefer Masterclass because you have classes by best in the acting business like Helen Mirren, Natalie Portman, Samuel L Jackson, Kevin Spacey, etc. The cost of a Masterclass is $15 per month and if you go for the annual plan it costs $180.
However, these are short-acting classes where you can familiarize yourself with the basics of acting.
If you want something more of a comprehensive online acting class that can be equivalent to a bachelor in acting, you should opt for acting classes by different acting schools like The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute, StageMilk Drama School, etc. These schools have 4 weeks program which might cost you around $350.
The advantage of having these types of courses is that you not only get the video lectures but you have access to coaches which is not possible with platforms like Masterclass or Udemy.
These are the popular online acting classes that you can opt for:
|Online Acting Class||Cost||Duration|
|Udemy Courses||$9 per course||10-15 Hours|
|Masterclass||$15 per month||10-15 Hours|
|Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute programs||$350||4 Weeks|
|Stage Milk Acting School||$499||8 Weeks|
Are There Free Acting Classes?
The straight answer is you won’t find any full-fledged free acting classes online or offline. However, many acting classes provide you first-class for free so that you can get an idea if the class is worth joining or not.
I have been to multiple such acting classes. Even now I like to go to these free acting classes whenever I get time. They are fun and you do learn a few things.
If you are new to acting I would suggest you to a proper acting class. A two-year course would be the best option for you.
The main reason being you cannot learn to act alone. You need partners, teachers, writers, and a whole lot of people to bring the story to stage or screen. At acting school or film school, you get everything.
Is There Any Financial Aid For Actors At School?
If you are searching how much acting classes cost, you might have a limited budget. In such a case going to acting schools that provide financial aid is a great option.
Fortunately, some of the top schools in the USA provide financial aid to drama students. Likes of The American Academy of Dramatic Arts or Theater of Arts have strong programs for providing financial help for their students.
These financial aids can be in the form of scholarships, federal grants, loans, or some on-campus job to help the student. Usually, you will have to apply for it after admission. And the scholarship or loan is generally granted if you have a high GPA during the academic year and few other requirements are met.
How much do acting classes cost depends on the time you have, how much you can spend and how experienced you are as an actor? If you are young in your 20s, go for the 1-2 year acting class. If you have a fair amount of acting experience but want to improve your acting, go for personal acting classes.
Our Recommended Tools
1. 100 Questions To Build A Character – Struggling to build a living, breathing, and believable character? Get my personal worksheet to build character. It has 100 questions that will help you build the character’s Physiology, Psychology, Sociology, and History.
2. Stageplays.com– Want to practice acting but don’t have the scripts. Get access to the largest library of all kinds of scripts with Stageplay.
3. Web For Actors – Want to build your own actor website that showcases your complete portfolio? Get the best website builder specifically designed for actors.