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American Musical and Dramatic Academy 2023 Review

The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) is a college performing arts institution with campuses in Los Angeles, California, and New York City.

The Conservatory provides two-year Certificates in Professional Performance in addition to Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees. Acting, musical theatre, dance, and performing arts programs are available.

The National Association of Schools of Theatre has accredited American Musical and Dramatic Academy as a facility.

American Musical and Dramatic Academy
American Musical and Dramatic Academy

About The American Musical and Dramatic Academy

AMDA, which is celebrating more than 50 years as one of the country’s top performing arts conservatories, is renowned across the business for having helped establish some of the most prominent careers in theater, cinema, and television.

As a musical theatre school arising from the thriving Manhattan arts scene, AMDA started its journey in 1964. The concept behind American Musical and Dramatic Academy was to establish a school administered by professionals in the performing arts for other professionals. The elite of Broadway’s theatre, including Sammy Davis Jr., Dina Merrill, Carol Channing, Richard Burton, and famed actress Elizabeth Taylor, provided early support for the institution, which went on to quickly establish itself as a vital element of the performing arts community in New York.

AMDA quickly gained recognition in the performing arts community for its highly regarded fundraising shows that paid homage to artists like Stephen Sondheim, Julie Styne, Ira Gershwin, and Cole Porter. Numerous stars from the stage and screen, including Angela Lansbury, Liza Minnelli, Bette Midler, and Kevin Kline, appeared in these productions.

In those early years, David Martin, who had trained with renowned actor Charles Laughton, and Philip Burton, AMDA’s first director—the actor and instructor best known for helping his adopted son, Richard Burton, establish his career—became fast friends. David Martin was an actor, director, and producer at the period who had jobs in both London and New York. Burton handed over the reins to David and his wife, Jan Martin, in the late 1970s, and the Martins went on to organize a number of televised gala shows for PBS at the renowned Lincoln Center. The Martins are still the AMDA’s executive and artistic directors today.

Under the Martins, American Musical and Dramatic Academy flourished as they created new programs and recruited some of the best performing artists in the world to serve as professors. The school had to relocate to Manhattan’s Upper West Side’s historic Ansonia Building due to the institution’s rapid development in the 1970s. After seeing continued growth in the 1990s, AMDA New York moved into a second building close to Lincoln Center, which is now its main home.

The Martins established a campus in Los Angeles in the Art Deco Yucca Vine Tower in the center of Hollywood in 2003, bringing AMDA’s success to the illustrious West Coast. With this ground-breaking decision, AMDA became the only university that offers a performing arts Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and has campuses in both New York and Los Angeles.

Over a century after its modest beginnings, AMDA is now a vibrant, fully accredited college that grants Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in acting, dance theatre, music theatre, and performing arts as well as Professional Conservatory degrees in New York and Los Angeles. American Musical and Dramatic Academy continues to expand by continuously adding new programs, facilities, and resources for its large community of students and alumni, building on decades of history.

More than 1,400 students enroll in AMDA’s demanding programs each year, and each young artist receives instruction from a faculty of working professionals who are experts in their disciplines. AMDA is dedicated to fostering artists who have the abilities and desire to start successful, creative careers that influence the lives of their local, national, and international communities as they anticipate the next generation of performers.

  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts
  • Instructional Language: English
  • Three years of study
  • Full-time mode of study
  • Location: New York City, United States

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American Musical and Dramatic Academy Acceptance Rate

AMDA received more than 7,700 applications for admission for the autumn of 2020, and it accepted about 2,400 of them, for an acceptance percentage of about 30%. That term, more than 530 admitted students actually enrolled.

When choosing which campus to attend, performers interested in attending American Musical and Dramatic Academy may wish to consider the total enrolment at each site.

The New York campus was ranked No. 109 on Niche’s list of the “Hardest Colleges to Get Into in America” out of more than 1,700 institutions.

There are 270 students enrolled in total at that branch, compared to roughly 1,500 at the Los Angeles campus.

American Musical and Dramatic Academy
American Musical and Dramatic Academy

Entry requirements

Full Conditions at AMDA
High school transcripts are required, although SAT and ACT scores are not. Consequently, in order to give the institution a better insight of the personalities of the applicants.

Additionally, AMDA suggests that applicants for the Bachelor of Arts degree submit a two-minute personal video in which they cover the relevant subjects.

Application Submission

1. To apply, you must be at least 16 years old and/or in your final two years of high school.

Additionally, AMDA accepts Royall VIP and CommonApp applications. If you have already submitted an application through one of AMDA’s partners, you do not need to do so again through their website.

If you haven’t turned 16 yet, you are strongly advised to consider joining the AMDA High School Summer Conservatory.

2. A phone call for admission

During this interview, AMDA would want to find out more about you, your educational background, and your interest in going to AMDA.

In order to schedule an appointment for this interview, please email with the best day, time, and phone number to reach you at.

3. Send in your Individual Essay

AMDA is interested in knowing more about you. Your essay(s) should respond to the following questions.

  • EVERY program must include: Tell us about a challenging experience you’ve had and the lessons you learned from it. (minimum of 500 words)

Additional requirements for BA programs (NOT NECESSARY for BFA or conservatory programs) Share a piece of your own original writing or an essay you’ve already written as part of a school assignment.

American Musical and Dramatic Academy want to see your best work, so please share a piece that you are particularly proud of. (minimum of 500 words).

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4. Sumit’s recommendation letter or letters

If possible, get letters of recommendation from anyone who is familiar with your credentials, such as coaches, school administrators, guidance counselors, or teachers, and submit them.

  • You must write your letter of recommendation in English, have it signed, and specify the date.
  • But you can mail forms and letters of recommendation to the address on them or email them to

5. Submit your academic transcripts and records.

If applicable, high school and college transcripts should be supplied. Official transcripts from each college or university included on your application must also be sent to AMDA.

A 2.0 grade point average (GPA) or its equivalent on other grading scales is therefore required for American Musical and Dramatic Academy programs.

American Musical and Dramatic Academy
American Musical and Dramatic Academy

AMDA Tuition Fees

Students at the Los Angeles and New York campuses each paid $42,660 in tuition and fees for the 2021–22 school year.

Students should expect to pay a significant sum for housing due to American Musical and Dramatic Academy’s location in two major cities. As a result, in Los Angeles, students in 2022–2023 had to pay $10,280 for on-campus housing.

However, the college estimated that during the same academic year, students at the New York location would spend $10,280 on off-campus housing.

With locations in both New York and Los Angeles, it is the best conservatory and institution for performing arts.

Additionally, in addition to a top-notch education, they provide their students with challenging, performance-based coursework and training that is focused on the company.

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Application Deadline

However, American Musical and Dramatic Academy provides rolling admissions, which means they accept new students during the whole school year. They told you to complete your admissions file 60 to 90 days prior to the start date you had set.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the application process like for American Musical and Dramatic Academy?

The average GPA at American Musical and Dramatic Academy is 3.15. GPA is required by the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. At the moment, American Musical and Dramatic Academy is selective.

Is AMDA a reputable institution?

A great place to perfect your craft is AMDA. Outstanding working individuals who have firsthand knowledge of the industry make up the majority of the faculty. You have a plethora of resources at your disposal. This is not a course for slackers; it is tough.

Is AMDA a Public or a Private School?

Since 1984, AMDA has held institutional and programmatic accreditation from the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST) as a private, non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization.

Are there Dorms at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts?

Yes, students at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles have access to on-campus accommodation. Dorms/residence halls are the most typical type of undergraduate housing that is provided.



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