Carnegie Mellon Video Essay On Actors

Admission Process Overview

The School of Drama at Carnegie Mellon is a member of the Consortium of Conservatory Theater Training Programs. Pre-screening, auditions or portfolio reviews are required for students applying to Acting, Design/Production, Directing and Music Theater. Dramaturgy applicants must submit additional documentation as part of their application.


Guidelines for applying to the School of Drama

Submit the Common Application after August 15. You must use your Common Application ID to register for a pre-screening, audition or portfolio review.

The School of Drama requirements vary by major. Acting and Music Theater applicants must submit pre-screen materials, after September 1. Design/Production applicants must register for an in-person portfolio review, after September 14. Directing applicants must register for an in-person audition/interview, after September 14. Dramaturgy applicants do not have an audition/portfolio review requirement but must submit additional documentation to the Office of Admission. 

Auditions and portfolio reviews fill on a first-come, first-served basis and are only available to Carnegie Mellon applicants. We encourage students to apply and then initiate a pre-screening, audition or portfolio review registration as soon as possible after September 1, as some cities and dates fill early in the fall. 

All School of Drama pre-screenings, auditions or portfolio reviews have a $115 fee, due at the time of online registration. However, if you've qualified for a fee waiver under the Common Application guidelines, you can also have your Drama fee waived. For Acting and Music Theater applicants subsequently invited to an in-person audition based on their pre-screening submission, no additional fees will be required. 

The Regular Decision application deadline for the School of Drama is December 1. Additionally, Design/Production applicants have the opportunity to consider our Early Decision application plan, which has a November 1 deadline.

All freshman applicants to the School of Drama are required to take either the SAT or ACT test.

Pre-screenings can be submitted to getacceptd.com/cmudrama after September 1.

Upload materials (as separate media clips):

  • Resume including any training and experience in theater, film, music and dance as well as academic achievements, work experience and community service.
  • Headshot
  • TWO short, contrasting monologues from plays.
    • The monologues should be selected from one contemporary piece and one classical piece (pre-1900).
    • Should portray characters that fall in your natural age range (teens and 20s).
    • The monologues should be no longer than 90 seconds each.
    • One should be shot in close-up (head and shoulders) and another showing your full body.
  • TWO 32-bar musical theater songs (~60 seconds each).
    • One up-tempo and one-ballad.
    • Sing with recorded or with live accompaniment, not a cappella.
    • One should be shot in close-up (head and shoulders) and another showing your full body.

Pre-screening notifications:
Pre-screens are viewed as they're received. You'll receive a pre-screening notification within two weeks of your submission, either inviting you to register for an in-person audition or notifying you that you won't be asked to audition in person.

Auditions and portfolio reviews fill on a first-come, first-served basis and are only available to Carnegie Mellon applicants. We encourage students to apply and then initiate a pre-screening as soon as possible after September 1, as some cities and dates fill early in the fall. 

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