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Why here, why now? Screen Acting in London

By Elise Czyzowska

04 April 2023

From September 2023, a brand-new postgraduate degree, MA Screen Acting, will be offered at MetFilm School London. This one-year course joins the existing postgraduate degrees offered in London – MA Cinematography, MA Directing, MA Film & Television Production, MA Post Production, MA Producing, and MA Screenwriting.

While this course is launching in London for the first time, it is not the only new course available at MetFilm School in 2023. MA Producing will join the four existing courses in Berlin, and MA Documentary & Factual, which previously ran exclusively in Berlin, will be available in Leeds.

Joining the MetFilm School blog today to talk about MA Screen Acting is our BA Screen Acting Programme Leader, Justin Trefgarne

MA Screen Acting at MetFilm School

MA Screen Acting, like all postgraduate degrees at MetFilm School, will focus on giving a practical, industry-focused education to its students. Offering consolidated, bespoke, and advanced training for actors, the course will also develop their professional profile, encouraging entrepreneurialism in every step of their career.

As Justin Trefgarne explains, MetFilm School ‘passionately believes in the transferable “power” skills that acting training provides’. To him, this includes ‘using creativity and imagination to solve complex problems, sophisticated role-playing, team-building, leadership and presentation skills – all of which are as vital outside of the industry as they are to a career in the performing arts’.

The themes covered during this course will include an investigation into the power of the actor in the Empty Space (as defined by Peter Brook), the particular requirements and skillset needed for commercial productions, and the world of acting within technology enhanced spaces, such as virtual production, green screen, and performance capture.

The craft of acting is taught at all MetFilm School campus locations. Explore more…

The Ealing Studios campus is well-equipped to provide for this new course, with the six existing MA degrees in London always in need of actors for both their academic and personal projects. Plus, being home to the existing BA Screen Acting degree, our London facilities are suited to the craft – in fact, in 2022, through the enhancement of our campus facilities, two purpose-made Acting Workshops were built.

Besides the facilities themselves, Justin Trefgarne has also been busy recruiting ‘some of the best acting coaches in the UK for the course’, with the help of BA Screen Acting Deputy Programme Leader, Krishna Dubasiya. ‘I think they’re all really looking forward to getting locked into an advanced training programme’, he explained, ‘especially with the craft of screen acting. Our screen actors have massively enriched the life of MetFilm School – they bring a vitality and a discipline that is really inspiring.’

Explore MetFilm School London in our virtual walkthrough!

Screen Acting in London

Of course, due to the huge number of resources and opportunities in London, the city is a great place to build a career in any area of the screen industry. However, it is particularly suited to screen acting – and especially right now.

While London has long been the third-largest centre for film production in the world, the Evening Standard in 2022 suggested that the capital might well be ‘the new Hollywood’, referring to a bidding war (including offers from Netflix and Apple TV) over studio space in Enfield, to the BFI’s 2021 UK Film Economy Report, which found that 53% of the UK’s film companies are currently based in London.

Not only this, but besides film and television, London offers numerous opportunities for screen actors – from stage or musical theatre productions, to networking opportunities within the constantly-growing creative industry.

London is one of the cultural centres of Europe, if not the world. It has a history dating back to before the Roman occupation; four hundred years ago, Shakespeare was writing and performing here!

Ever since, the city has been a host to some of the best and most dynamic drama from across the globe. It’s impossible to oversell what this city offers to visitors and residents alike.

Justin TrefgarneBA Screen Acting Programme Leader


Why Screen Acting?

With the continued industry growth in London, there also comes a heightened level of competition. With so many aspiring actors and artists in the city, students have a near endless community to connect with and grow alongside – but as an actor, how can you set yourself apart from the crowd?

While an MA degree is by no means the only way into the screen industry, it can help to provide you with this ‘edge’. Justin Trefgarne sees this in two major areas: training, and team-building.

Students are always creating new work – and this is accompanied by constant reflection, allowing them to take ownership of their outcomes, and to develop essential self-awareness and self-auditing skills alongside their craft.

The second component is team building: film school is where students get to develop a strong network of collaborative, skilled practitioners to learn from, hang out with and, we hope, develop lasting creative relationships with into the future. The value of this cannot be understated.

Justin TrefgarneBA Screen Acting Programme Leader