Term Dates 2020/2021

Induction Week
14th Sep – 18th Sep
Autumn Term
21st Sep – 4th Dec
Spring Term
11th Jan – 26th Mar
Summer Term
26th Apr – 16th Jul

These are the 1st year of the Three Year Acting Course dates. Other course dates may slightly vary so please check the course pages.

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Course Leader: Mary Irwin (interim)
Course Location: Wandsworth (London)
Study Level: Postgraduate
Study Mode: Part Time
Course Length: 17 Months (36 teaching weeks)
Application: FREE
Awarding Body
St Mary’s University, London
*(subject to validation)

ALRA is collaborating with Kristin Linklater to create a unique Master of Fine Arts degree, subject to validation by St Marys University, Twickenham.

  • The new MFA Linklater Teaching Practice (Voice and Theatre Arts) is a unique practice- based Masters Degree centred in Kristin Linklater’s methodology. Linklater is a world-leading expert in vocal technique for actors and performers of all disciplines. The Linklater voice methodology underpins all voice training at ALRA, which is internationally recognised as one of the most innovative centres for actor training.

    The MFA is rooted in Linklater’s approach to voice as fundamental to a whole system for actor training. A second emphasis in the two-year programme is Applied Theatre Arts, as developed by Augusto Boal through his ‘Theatre of the Oppressed’.

    A reimagined, pioneering training for Actor-Teachers

    ALRA believe that the highest purpose of theatre is to shed light on the lives we lead and to the shift perception towards potential transformation. 


    Who is this for?

    This training programme takes into consideration the changing world of the performing arts industry and traditional actor training. We recognise that many trained actors from conventional conservatory programmes wish to continue their training and develop their skills further. This MFA bridges the skill gap and will enable graduates to enter new creative roles with confidence and authority.


    Why is this training needed? 

    When actors create projects with community groups or begin to lead classes in a drama school setting, they often lack the specific skills and ethical preparation to engage effectively with groups.

    Combining the Linklater approach with the Applied Theatre Arts methodology of Augusto Boal, movement theory developed by Trish Arnold and the acting techniques of Michael Chekhov, this MFA programme will equip graduates with the skills to develop the capacity of multiple communities to express complex social and political needs and find their voices both metaphorically and physically. 

    As global culture shifts there is a growing need for professionals who can lead artistic projects, to facilitate groups from a multitude of experiences and beliefs to successfully communicate.


    What will the training experience be? 

    The ALRA MFA Linklater Teaching Practice (Voice and Theatre Arts) represents a shift in emphasis in Actor Training by making voice the foundation of the training.

    Year 1 

    Within the first year, students will be immersed in holistic actor training that rebalances the hierarchy of voice, movement and acting. Linklater’s work is at the heart of the training, supported and complemented by Trish Arnold’s body work, known as ‘Pure Movement.’

    Building on the foundation of free voices and bodies, acting classes will be based in Michael Chekhov’s psycho-physical techniques. Over the course of year one, students will choose a particular focus for their second year of study, which can be either Voice or Theatre Arts, under the guidance of the course leader. 

    Mid-Programme Attachment 

    In the weeks between study, that bridge the end of year one and start of year two, students will organise a professional attachment with either a Designated Linklater Teacher (Voice Specialism), or another relevant performing arts professional or mentor that complements their second year specialism.

    When students begin considering choosing their professional pathway they will receive 50 hours mentorship with an appropriate advisor.

    Year 2 

    Candidates for Designated Linklater Voice Teacher status will enter a focused study and practice stream to prepare them for this specialised qualification. Opportunities to deliver Linklater methodology will involve collaboration with the students studying the Theatre Arts Specialism and other teaching opportunities, with a particular importance placed on the process of pedagogic practice, and the personal discoveries made in this specialised learning environment. 

    Students focusing on the Applied Theatre Arts Specialism will contextualise their learning through devising a workshop or other presentation. 

    All students will continue their focus on the Linklater methodology throughout Year 2, with opportunities to work within the community, with other ALRA students and peers.

    In addition, all students will develop a final performance project to be presented at the end of the programme. This project will demonstrate an understanding of the pedagogical practice, and its artistic value. 


    Teaching Pattern and Methods 

    The programme is delivered over two years through a series of modules that consist of workshops, seminars and tutorials. The module delivery takes part in the first half of each year allowing learners to engage in employment during the non-taught elements of the programme.

    The core disciplines of Voice, Movement and Acting are included weekly. A typical day will involve practical training in these disciplines from 9.00am to 6.00pm. Near the end of Year one, the training will focus on Augusto Boal’s ‘Theatre of the Oppressed’ methodology, during which students will be guided in the first steps towards community engagement and Applied Theatre Arts.

    At the end of the taught element of the programme in Year 1, learners will travel to Orkney for a two-week residency at the Kristin Linklater Voice Centre. 



    From May through December of Year 1, students will engage in a self-directed practical application of their learning. This will include a minimum of 50 hours attachment to their chosen mentor.

    A typical day will again run from 9.00am to 6.00pm. 

    The programme will be delivered over a five-day week. In addition to continued practical training, the programme will include theories of physiology, psychology and neuroscience. Students will learn about the business of teaching, entrepreneurship, and leading through creativity.

    Students will additionally work with members of a community group, ALRA students or invited participants. They will follow either their Linklater teaching or Applied Theatre Arts path in order to create projects that demonstrate their specialism.

    Students who have chosen to pursue Designation as a Linklater Voice Teacher will teach the entire progression to interested communities. These sessions will be observed and critiqued by peers and Senior Designated Linklater Teachers.

    Those choosing to specialise in Applied Theatre Arts will lead workshops and/or rehearsals within their areas of interest. These projects will be observed and critiqued by a Boal specialist.

    ALRA defines a community as a group of people who share a common experience, value system or defined cultural heritage.

    At the end of the taught element of Year 2, Kristin Linklater and/or a practitioner of senior standing, will visit the UK to work intensively with the cohort.


    Indicative Module Content:

    Module Title 



     Linklater Voice  


    Year 1- 100 hours of contact time

    A comprehensive training in the Linklater Voice Methodology focusing on an embodied experience of the progression as described in Freeing the Natural Voice. 

    End of term assessment will be based on demonstration of both theoretical and practical understanding of the work.  



    Year 1- 50 hours of contact time 

    Movement training for actors focusing on the work of Trish Arnold, including ensemble and other relevant physical theatre approaches. 

    End of term assessment will be based on demonstration of both theoretical and practical understanding of the work.  



    Year 1- 120 hours of contact time 

    Actor training will centre on the Michael Chekhov Technique, with explorations in improvisation, ensemble and scene work. 

    Assessment will be through the development of a self-devised piece using the techniques presented in this first term.  

     Applied Theatre Arts


    Years 1 and 2 – 200 hours of contact time 

    This module will focus on the work of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed in an initial intensive workshop. Over the course of the year the cohort will create individual applied theatre projects.

    In Year 2, a professional director will work with the students to bring their projects together to create a final presentation of the module’s explorations. 

    Assessment will be through the creation of a performance or workshop with accompanying reflective tasks.

     Creative Attachment:


    Year 1 – 50 hours of contact time

    This placement is undertaken during the seven months between the taught portions of Years 1 and 2. Students will engage in a practice based Creative Attachment in their chosen specialism.

    Specialised paths include:

    • Designated Linklater Teacher candidates observe 50 hours teaching by a senior DLT
    • Applied Theatre Arts Practitioner candidates will intern with a practising company or organisation engaged in social or educational activism

    Following this, all students will present a practise-based paper that explains a specific learning journey (individual or group) that they have observed.

    This module is self-directed and can take place in the location of the student’s choice.  

    Assessment will be based on demonstration of artistic and pedagogical ability, in addition to the fulfilment of the above requirements.  

    • Linklater Voice Teaching Practice
    • Applied Theatre Arts Practice 


    Year 2- 250 hours of contact time

    All students will cover: 

    • Theatre History
    • Theatre Arts Curriculum Development
    • Psychology of Voice
    • Neurodiversity and Voice
    • The Business of Voice
    • Recorded Media and Vocal Technique
    • Leadership 

    LVTP students will additionally cover: 

    • Anatomy and Physiology
    • Embodied Phonetics

    ATAP students will additionally cover:

    • Ethics within Applied Theatre

    Voice specialism students will enter into an observed practice teaching stage, demonstrating their ability to teach each step of the Linklater Methodology.

    Students will work with the Course Leader and peers to refine their practical and theoretical knowledge.  

    Applied Theatre Arts specialism students will create a project in their area of interest, engaging themselves or others in a creative endeavour.   

    Students on both specialisms will engage in practice work with community groups, peers and/or ALRA students, with ongoing feedback from the Course Leader.  

    Throughout Year two, formal classes will be augmented with lectures, workshops and practical training activities.  

    Assessment will be through an observed 90 minute Voice class, led by a DLT candidate, or a workshop/rehearsal led by an ATA candidate, followed by a reflective task.   

    The creation of a digital portfolio evidencing student teaching practice in the form of a ‘teaching reel’ will also be an assessed component of this module. 

    Contextualising Linklater Voice in Theatre Arts Practice  


    Year 2: 250 hours of contact time

    This module is at the heart of the second year continuing the training in performance through the Linklater Methodology. Students continue to integrate skills into performance projects throughout Year 2.

    Students will be expected to work with each other and visiting directors to create performance work that is about, and impactful upon, the world around them. This taught module will end with a self-led period of creation developing ensemble and individual pieces of performance that evidence the student’s mastery of the principles explored within the training. 

    Learners will be assessed through: 

    • the development of a performance piece exploring theatre arts through the Linklater Methodology
    • a reflective Viva Voce 

    Key features of this course include:  

    • Two residencies in Orkney at the Kristin Linklater Voice Centre led by Kristin Linklater, or a senior Designated Linklater Teacher.
    • Kristin Linklater will present the Designated Linklater Teacher certificates in London at the culmination of the course. 
    • Self-selected apprenticeship and/or observership with a Designated Linklater Teacher or Applied Theatre Arts Practitioner.
    • Placement and observership hours at ALRA
    • A working model for a socially driven theatre practice, centred in voice, involving partnership with applied theatre companies in the UK and beyond. 
  • Achievement of a BA (Hons) or BFA in Theatre or Acting or Performing Arts, in any setting. Applicants may offer equivalent professional experience as alternative qualification.

    Acceptance into the programme is by written application and audition. Auditions will comprise performance one classical text, one contemporary text and an unaccompanied song, followed by an interview.

  • Fees for 2020 Entry





    MFA Linklater Teaching Practice





  • On the assessment day applicants will present the following:

    • A Classical Speech (this can be Shakespearean/Jacobean/Elizabethan or an equivalent text that may be from cultures other than western classical text but contain elements of rhythm and poetry)
    • A Haiku
    • A Song (unaccompanied verse and chorus of any chosen song)

    Applicants will then take part in a workshop where they will be assessed on ensemble, performance and skill.

    Finally, applicants will be invited to interview.