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Acting Welcome Guide

Preparing for your course

We're delighted that you've chosen to join our creative community at Arts University Bournemouth. We can't wait to see what you'll create.

Welcome to BA (Hons) Acting

This welcome pack is designed to give you an idea of what to expect during the first weeks of your course. Please take the time to read it carefully and take particular note of the pre-course preparation. We hope that you'll enjoy a happy and productive time with us, and we look forward to meeting you in October.

A message from your Course Leader

We're very excited that you're joining the BA (Hons) Acting degree course this year, and my colleagues and I are looking forward to welcoming you. We hope you'll enjoy the course and your time at Arts University Bournemouth.

Please read this pack carefully as it includes important information about your first week and certain items that you will need to purchase or bring with you for the start of the course. You'll find out more about the course and the University on arrival, but in the meantime you may wish to do some preparation.

As you'll already be aware, the BA (Hons) Acting course is a practice-based degree course in Acting that also contains some purely theoretical units. In our experience of running the course, some students struggle with more traditional academic work and we recommend that all of you undertake some preparatory reading this summer to equip you for the forthcoming year.

We also recommend that you spend some time this summer familiarising yourself with the acting industry by reading The Stage newspaper, exploring theatres and theatre companies that interest you, and watching as much theatre (live, online or recorded) as possible.

We look forward to meeting you soon!

- Katharine Piercey, Course Leader

Before you join us

The books that we recommend you purchase are books that'll be used throughout the course and will very likely be needed in your first units of study. Whilst copies of these books are available in our library, there are limited numbers of them, and you're strongly advised to have a personal copy. You'll receive a comprehensive reading list in your Course Handbook when you arrive.

  • Benedetti, J. (2005) The Art of the Actor: The Essential History of Acting from Classical Times to the Present Day. London: Methuen (New versions from £30 and used versions from £1 on The 2007 edition is also available as an e-book from the AUB library which you will be able to access once you have enrolled).
  • Zarrilli, P. et al. (2010) Theatre Histories: An Introduction. London: Routledge (New versions from £45.49 from Amazon, used versions from £3 from The 2010 and 2016 editions are also available as e-books from the AUB library which you will be able to access once you have enrolled).
  • Rodenburg, P. (1997) The Actor Speaks. London: Methuen. (New versions from £21 and used versions from £3.50 on The 2019 edition is recommended, but any will do)
  • Merlin, B. (2007). The Complete Stanislavski Toolkit. London: Nick Hern Books (£11 - 13 from Amazon).

As these books will be useful throughout your degree, please make an effort to purchase them. The prices above are from Amazon or Abe Books, ranging from used to brand new – they can also be purchased from any reasonably stocked bookstore.

There's no summer project for this course.

Current student work

Have a look through some of the work our current students are producing to get an idea of the type of work you may be doing on our course.

Course equipment

We suggest that you bring the following items with you:

  • Notepad and pens/pencils.
  • Memory stick or external hard drive for backing up your computer work.
  • Water bottle.
  • Plain black clothes that allow movement, such as T-shirts, tracksuit bottoms and leggings, are required for all movement, voice, singing and acting classes. For warm weather, you may wish to wear short trousers. Please ensure these clothes do not have zips, metallic bits or logos. Leggings must be opaque, and T-shirts must cover the stomach area.
  • Students who identify as female are advised to acquire a black practice skirt (ankle or floor length) and black character shoes (from dance equipment shops), though these are not compulsory.
  • Nude underwear to be used during costume fittings.
  • You'll often be asked to work barefoot in skills classes but may wish to work in jazz shoes instead. Please bring with you a pair of black jazz shoes (available at any dance shop) if you prefer working in shoes. No trainers are permitted in skills classes.
  • If you know that you have knee problems please bring knee pads with you.

Please note you won't be allowed to participate in acting and skills classes without appropriate clothing.

What to bring on your first day

All you need to bring on your first day is a smile, a notebook and a pen.

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We’re delighted for you to join us at AUB – we can’t wait to see what you’ll create.

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Next Steps

Find out the useful dates and contact before you start here

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