Welcome to the professional acting diploma.

Welcome to our Acting Diploma, developed in association with the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School - part of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama and one of the leading drama schools in the world.

We have created a unique course that draws on therichness and rigour of the drama training at the Old Vic Theatre School but makes it available for 16-18 year olds. In short, it will deliver the highest quality training that will equip you to take the next steps to be a professional actor.

The course is a full time two year Extended Level 3 Diploma (that’s the equivalent of up to 3 A* A-levels) at the end of which you can chOose to progress to university or drama school. You’ll experience a comprehensive teaching programme of workshops, classes and productions taught by expert staff. Places are limited to a maximum of 30 students per year.

We are committed to equality and diversity in the way we recruit for the course and we aim to train a group of young actors who properly reflect the diversity of Bristol.

At first sight Buster Keaton, a silent movie actor from 100 years ago, might seem an odd choice to front this new venture. But Buster Keaton was one of the first great actors working in a new medium. Unafraid to take risks, physically brave and psychologically insightful, he was a pioneer of the art. Those are the qualities that we want the young actors who emerge from our course to have.

In my 30 years of working in drama schools I’ve met countless students who say, “at 16 I knew I wanted to be an actor and I wish there had been a proper drama school experience available to me”.

Now there is.

Stuart Wood,
Course Director


Pegasus is proud to make the full resources of theatre making available to the next generation. Our mission is to equip young people with the skills and knowledge to develop as artists, taught by professionals working in theatre today.

Our partnership with boomsatsuma will ensure young people who want a career in the industry get hands-on training in the heart of a working theatre.

Corinne Micallef, Pegasus Theatre Joint CEO/Artistic Director




Kiran Raywilliams


About the course.

The course is an RSL Level 3 Extended Diploma in Creative and Performing Arts (Acting). It’s a full time programme of study.

What will the course be like?

It will be an intensive and challenging acting course, with the standards and expectations of a professional actor training.

It’s designed to:

  • Develop you as a young contemporary actor
  • Discover your individuality 
  • Equip you to be a creative theatre maker

As a student, you’ll have a personalised learning programme and you’ll work with your tutors to develop specific areas of skill. We’ll support your progression so we can best help you to achieve your ambitions beyond the course, whether that’s university, drama school or in some cases entry into the profession. 

As well as acting you’ll learn about careers in production and technical theatre and if that’s a route you want to explore we can broker learning and work experience with our partners. We’ll support your progression to a technical theatre course or into work and having an understanding of the acting process will stand you in good stead.

You’ll receive 24 hours a week of contact time over 38 weeks a year for 2 years. The weekly timetable is structured over 4 days leaving a day for independent study and assignments.



Enya Jacobson


What will I learn?


The course will help you to discover the actor you are, your unique voice, and how you find the truth to be able to create character.

The core of the programme is the acting class that runs throughout the course. There you will learn about searching for and communicating truth, find inspiration from exploring acting techniques from Augusto Boal to Meisner, and develop ownership of your work as a theatre maker.

The voice programme focuses on learning how the voice works, voice production techniques, speech and accent work and interpreting text.

The movement programme works to free the body from constraints and personal habits and develop a more conscious control of the body as the actor’s instrument. You’ll explore a variety of different approaches to character physicality including Laban, Animal Studies and Rasa Box. 

In addition you’ll take units in:

  • Physical Theatre
  • Masks and Puppetry
  • Comedy
  • Acting for Camera


Workshop and production

In Year 1 each term focuses on a rehearsal project that puts the skills work into practice. At the end of the year, as a group, you’ll devise an issue-based community piece for production.

In Year 2 the focus moves to performance with a TV and film project and major productions; one whole group ensemble piece that could be site specific and then the group divides to work on two final productions in professional theatres in Bristol.

Audition technique and support for drama school or university entry run right through Year 2.



You will study the work of the artists who have influenced current theatre practice and how theatre genres have developed. You will learn how the performing arts industry is organised and how to build a career in it. You’ll have the opportunity to try out technical theatre skills and put them into practice as you learn about the production process.

You’ll be expected to work as part of a group, responding to a range of stimuli and challenging your personal and creative potential alongside your learning of acting and theatre techniques.  You’ll be required to undertake independent rehearsal, study and research to inform and enhance your learning and development.


How is the course assessed?

This is a very practical course and we assess you in a variety of ways:

  • Assessment is by coursework based on assignments set in each unit
  • Assignments will involve: performance projects, individual research, group work and project work- all uploaded to an online portfolio.
  • Assessments are graded at Distinction, Merit or Pass.

On successful completion of the course, you will be awarded an overall Distinction, Merit or Pass grade


"Skills classes supporting the acting class in building the essential vocabulary of the actor"



Where we are.

Pegasus Theatre

Pegasus Theatre has over 50 years’ experience of working with young people, sparking creativity and imagination from all backgrounds, empowering them and giving them a voice.  We do this through an exemplary programme of creative learning, participation and training, at the heart of a professional theatre producing and presenting inspirational drama, dance and music.

Pegasus Theatre has some of the best spaces in the city for training including a fully equipped theatre and 133- seat auditorium, dance studio with sprung floor which is also used as a studio theatre, a workshop for designing and building sets, props and costume, music tech studio, dressing rooms, green room and public cafe.

Pegasus are experts in the development and incubation of theatre companies and artists - a seedbed for new talent. This support has helped develop the early careers of individuals and companies that have gone on to influence the British and international theatre scene (eg: Complicite, The Right Size, Peepolykus & Tavaziva).

The SPARK supported artist programme for new and emerging artists & companies provides the space and skills development needed to turn their ideas into reality. The SPARK programme will connect with the course by offering workshops, industry talks and professional development opportunities. Current artists include: Holly&Ted, Wild Boor Ideas, Clown Funeral, Morgan & West, Karim Khan, Catriona Kerridge and Elise Heaven.