How to deal with performing arts school rejection

By Kirsty Harragan - 28/10/2019

How to deal with performing arts school rejection

The path to becoming an actor is not easy and along the way it is inevitable that you will deal with rejection, but don’t let this get you down and don’t panic – it happens to the best of us! Drama schools have thousands of applicants each year, but limited spaces to fill, so getting in after your first attempt may be unlikely. But rather than dwelling on it, use the rejection to become a better actor and find the right school for you.  

It’s normal to be upset about getting rejected from your favourite school, and that’s fine, but after you’ve taken a day or two to be upset, you will have to get up and start again. Rejections don’t mean you made a mistake or weren’t good enough, it’s possible that the reason you were rejected is out of your control, such as a similarity in looks or personality to someone else already offered a place. Whatever the reason, remember this will be the first of many rejections throughout your career, so take a deep breath and move on.  

Be honest with yourself if you made a mistake and use this to your advantage; don’t be afraid to ask for feedback from others about how you improve. Remember friends and family will often be very polite. Tell them you want honest, candid, constructive comments and advice.    

Finally, remember that getting rejected doesn’t mean it’s the end of your career. Research and apply to as many schools as possible. Attend open days and talk to current students on the courses. If you are not successful you can always try again next year. Many students at drama school do not succeed straight from A 'levels and often a little life experience is very beneficial. Read novels, plays, acting technique books.  Writing is also a good way to expand your skillset.  Even if writing isn’t necessarily what you want to do you will learn more about thinking from the perspective of different characters and scenarios. Going to the theatre is also a great way to learn more about the industry, and it doesn’t have to be as expensive as you may think; try going to local theatre shows near you or going to the last-minute ticket booths and paying less than half price for tickets to West End shows. You could even take part in acting workshops to help prepare you to smash your next auditions and use this as a year to save! 

 

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