National Theatre Drama School returns to the main stage of the National Theatre

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964219For the first time in many years the National Theatre Drama School will return to the main stage of the National Theatre Melbourne to present their graduating production. The Man Who Came to Dinner, a Broadways hit,will showcase the acting talents of the school’s Final Year Advanced Diploma students as well as guest appearances from recent graduates.

Over the course of their three year study the drama students are introduced to a range of styles of writing and performing, in this case the smart and topical world of Broadway theatre in the late 1930s. Co-author George S. Kaufman collaborated on a number of plays in his long career but these days is best remembered for his work on the classic Marx brother’s films such as A Night at the Opera and The Coconuts.

The National Theatre Drama School has a long and distinguished history of professional actor training.

Graduates include Logie award winner Kat Stewart (Offspring, Mr & Mrs Murder and Underbelly), Richard Davies (Offspring), Richard Cawthorne (Killing Time), Heath Ledger scholarship winner Bella Heathcote (Dark Shadows and Twilight Zone) Brett Tucker (McLeod’s Daughters), Tosh Greenslade (Mad as Hell) and Lawrence Mooney (Dirty Laundry Live).

Ken Boucher, Director, National Theatre Drama School says of The Man Who Came to Dinner.

“It’s very exciting to see the National Theatre Drama School students return to the theatre’s main stage.  The hard working and dedicated cast of the show, who have come to the school from all over Australia, deserves nothing less than the full treatment from a professional stage.”

The National Theatre Melbourne CEO, Nic Clark said of the school.

“We are constantly seeing graduates of the Drama School go on to do amazing things in the performing arts and I am sure that this year’s graduates will be no exception.  There is a reason that many of the school’s graduates go on to pursue careers in acting and the arts and this is a true testament to the quality of education that they receive from Ken and the staff of the school”

The National Theatre Movement was founded by Miss Gertrude Johnson in 1935 and today encompasses both the National Theatre Drama and Ballet Schools.  Miss Johnson, a onetime student of Australian Opera Legend Dame Nellie Melba, was an accomplished singer who upon retiring from singing set up the National Theatre to provide training opportunities for upcoming artists after becoming concerned by the lack of existing opportunities

Today, both the National Theatre Drama and Ballet Schools offers a range of full and part time courses catering for a range of ages from beginners to elite and junior to senior classes.

The National Theatre Drama School is Victoria’s longest-established actor-training institution, and one of the leading acting schools in Australia. Based in its own purpose-built facilities in St Kilda, the school offers a range of full time and part time acting courses in stage performance, and in acting for film and television.

In 2016, the National Theatre Melbourne will celebrate 80 years of continuous operation and provision of opportunities to emerging performing arts talent.

Tickets for the National Theatre Drama School’s The Man Who Came to Dinner are available from

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