Frequently Asked Questions
We admit actors with a strong sense of individuality and real potential for a lifetime of work in the theater, who possess instruments that are expressive and trainable, who are at home with themselves, who have access to their imaginations and emotional lives and who love playing with others.
In order to be considered for admission in the fall of 2022, you must submit your application no later than 11:59PM (US Eastern Standard Time) on Monday, January 3, 2022. Applications and inquiries received after that time will not be considered.
Yes — in Chicago and San Francisco only. We do not schedule times for walk-in appointments in advance. You should arrive early and be prepared to wait until a slot is available. You must pay the full application fee by cash, traveler’s check or money order and turn in a headshot/resume and a completed application form at the time of your audition. Your supporting materials should be sent in as soon as possible following the audition. Although walk-in applicants have passed the deadline to officially submit an application online, we strongly encourage you to also create an online application account so your recommenders may submit their letters of recommendation in advance of your walk-in audition. Kindly upload your application materials AND bring copies with you to the walk-in audition. Please email email@example.com with questions about the walk-in audition / application process.
We want to know who you are! We suggest you choose material you feel strongly about, material that reveals something personal about you and where something important is at stake for the character. We want to see your idea of what acting is, what your sense of purpose in acting is — not someone else’s. Your heart and your individuality are what’s important to us.
Please prepare two contrasting pieces to share at your initial audition. Your pieces can be drawn from any period and any genre of theatrical literature. If requested, you should be ready to present a third and even a fourth piece. All material must be fully memorized and in English. While there is no strict time limit for the audition, we strongly recommend that your pieces not exceed 3 minutes in length. 2 – 2 ½ minutes per piece is a useful target to aim for.
Your pieces can be from any source. We have found over time that material written for the stage tends to better serve actors in our audition process. However, you should present the kind of material that speaks to you.
If you have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution where English was the primary language of instruction, you do not need to take the TOEFL. Otherwise — yes, you are required to take the TOEFL. For those matriculating during the 2022-2023 academic year, the TOEFL must be completed at least two (2) weeks before the January 3, 2022 application deadline. In addition, the application materials you submit must be in English, and you must demonstrate a fluent command of English during your audition and interview.
No. The pre-screening is optional. The reason we offer the assessment of the Optional Pre-Screening for Non-Native Speakers of English is to prevent international applicants from spending a lot of money and time traveling to a US audition site, when we can reasonably predict they will not be admitted. We assume that people who take the time to send us a video care what we think and welcome our prediction as a thoughtful way of protecting them from disappointment. If in our judgement you do not yet possess a command of spoken English that we believe is necessary for an actor to be able to take full advantage of our training, we will recommend that you do not audition. However, you have the option of not following our recommendation — that is, we will not prevent you from auditioning in the U.S. The deadline to submit the optional pre-screening is December 1 in order for the Admissions Committee to review your pre-screening before you submit your application by the January 3, 2022 deadline.
No. You must audition in person for the Admissions Committee. We regret that this requirement presents financial and/or logistical hardships for many applicants. However, there is vital information that the Admissions Committee can gain only by being in the actual physical presence of the actor. It is therefore necessary for us to see each candidate up close in an environment unmediated by technology.
Yes, we will send you an invitation letter to show your local U.S. Embassy/Consulate after you have officially submitted your application and self-scheduled your audition timeslot. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you self-scheduled your audition timeslot but did not receive an invitation letter.
International applicants are encouraged to plan their tourist visit to the United States in advance. The wait time for a tourist visa application interview can vary, so early application is strongly encouraged. It is important to apply for a tourist visa well in advance of the travel departure date.
David Geffen School of Drama is located in New Haven, Connecticut. During your visit to Yale, we suggest that you may wish to explore nearby cities and visit their tourist attractions. New Haven is two-and-a-half-hours south of Boston and almost two hours north of New York City. Both cities are accessible by car, train, bus, and airplane. We also suggest that you may wish to explore tourist attractions at Chicago, Illinois or San Francisco, California during your visit for your audition at those cities.
You may download a free copy of the David Geffen School of Drama at Yale Bulletin in HTML and PDF formats at http://bulletin.yale.edu/. The Bulletin includes official details on programs of study, course descriptions, degree and major requirements, and additional regulations. Under “Acting (M.F.A. and Certificate)” you will find a year by year description of the acting curriculum.