This initiative is not open to funding enquiries or applications.
The Dramatic Arts initiative was first launched in 2014 with a £1.25 million allocation over five years. It featured a competitive annual £150,000 Clothworkers’ Theatre Award (£750,000 over the five years) for regional producing theatres in England. It also included full bursaries for talented students from low-income backgrounds to enable them to take up a place at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) or the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), with £180,000 awarded to both drama schools over a five-year period.
The Dramatic Arts initiative also provided bursaries for promising young actors and writers at the National Youth Theatre (£50,000 over five years) as well as an annual Clothworkers’ Laurence Olivier Bursary through the Society of London Theatre for a final year acting student from a low-income background (£36,000 over five years).
Following an independent external evaluation of Dramatic Arts by Sam Culture in 2019, which found that the bursaries in particular had achieved their key objective of creating opportunities for students from low-income/working class backgrounds, our Foundation Trustees extended Dramatic Arts with a further £1 million allocation. The entire allocation was committed during 2020 through the following grants:
- National Youth Theatre: £490,000 (£400,000 to support NYT to plan, implement and evaluate a revised model for young people’s participation; £60,000 for bursaries over five years; and £30,000 towards NYT on tour)
- London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art: £225,000 over five years for full two- or three-year bursaries to students from low-income backgrounds
- Royal Academy of Dramatic Art: £225,000 over five years for full two- or three-year bursaries to students from low-income backgrounds
- Society of London Theatre: £50,000 over five years for annual £10,000 Clothworkers’ Laurence Olivier Bursaries to talented final-year acting students from low-income backgrounds