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Toi Whakaari New Zealand Drama School
Toi Whakaari New Zealand Drama School logo

Bachelor of Performing Arts (Acting)

This course is available


Level of Study

Bachelor's Degree


3 years

Next start date

Expected Jul 2024


Toi Whakaari New Zealand Drama School


The Bachelor of Performing Arts (Acting) is Aotearoa’s most prestigious actor training course. Running over three years, this intensive degree programme is designed to train a Responsive Actor – an actor who has the courage, skill and ?exibility to meet any opportunity as they build a career in our ever-changing arts landscape. As an actor in training at Toi Whakaari, you will work across screen and live performance in class, studio and full productions. You will work solo, in an ensemble and in collaboration with other training artists across other disciplines in the kura.

Course Information

Toi Whakaari’s actor training is built around the concept of Turangawaewae – developing your unique place to stand as an actor and artist.

Turanga, the first year, focusses on you. During the year you will build a strong set of foundation skills. You will work with leading professionals and teachers in concentrated blocks to develop your voice, body and imagination in both screen and live performance. In the second half of the year you will work on a classic text for theatrical performance and you will create your own solo piece which you will perform to live audiences.

Raranga, the second year, challenges you to weave your individual skills within the ensemble and take part in collaborative projects. You will also develop screen audition skills and be part of three major live and screen productions. You will also participate in masterclasses that will challenge you and extend your acting craft in exciting ways.

Waewae, the third year, is about growing your independence and connecting you to the industry. You will be part of Toi Film, a live performance production, industry workshops, audition workshops, and self-tape practice. You will also develop and showcase your own work inside and outside the school.

Career Pathways

Graduates of Toi Whakaari’s acting programme can be found in prominent positions throughout the entertainment industry in New Zealand and around the world. Today, our acting graduates can be found working as professional actors, producers, writers, teachers, directors, creative content producers and in many other roles across many different sectors. Gaining transferable skills is a key outcome of the actor training programme at Toi Whakaari. This focus pays huge dividends for our students.

Entry criteria

Students must be at least 18 years by the first day of the first term of the course. There is no upper age limit.

English Language Proficiency

IELTS test – Academic score of 6 with no band score lower than 5.5

TOEFL Internet based test (iBT) - Score of 60 (with a writing score of 18)

NZCEL - Level 4 with the Academic endorsement

Pearson Test of English (Academic) – PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score less than 42

Language Cert - C1 Expert IESOL (LRWS) with PASS and no less than Pass in each skill

Trinity ISE - ISE II with no less than distinction in any band

OET – Minimum of Grade C or 200 in all subtests

Cambridge English Qualifications - B2 First or B2 First for schools, or C1 Advanced, or C2 Proficiency with a score of 169. No less than 162 in each skill

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