Fourth Monkey believes that actor training should be accessible to every individual who has the drive and determination to work within a very competitive yet rewarding industry.
Fourth Monkey’s mission is to revolutionise the arts and to diversify the voices we hear on stage, which is why we are committed to opening access to our courses. As a charity organisation, all of our student fees go toward the training we provide, keeping it ethical in its delivery and delivering the highest calibre of training we possibly can.
We know that the financial investment in actor training is substantial, but insist that it should not be prohibitive. This is why we work with each and every student to whom we offer a place, to make sure they know how they will fund their training and offer support where possible.
Fourth Monkey has, at present, actively decided against applying for accreditation for its programmes. This is a decision to protect our training and our right to change and evolve our programmes, without limitation from an umbrella organisation or associated institution. Consequently, our actors-in-training are not eligible for student finance. However, there are means of funding beyond traditional loans, and we are here to help you access them. Our aim here is to demonstrate that you should not be put off and to show you the various ways you can fund your training, whether one your own or with support.
An Affordable Course
Our approach to making our training financially accessible begins with the construction of our courses. We adopt an accelerated learning approach to our programmes, with our four term academic years. This reduces the financial implication of training for up to three years; a training year, in our opinion, should be a full years training and experience. This also means you only have to fund your living costs for two years, as opposed to the more traditional three, a significant expense which can often be miscalculated. We also subsequently get you out in the world working a year sooner!
We make sure that there are no hidden fees – we don’t ask you to buy additional books, we don’t charge you for travel with the course – it really is all inclusive. This helps you with budgeting and ensures that your costs don’t spiral beyond your original financial commitment. We also charge every student the same rate, whether from the UK, Europe or beyond – our costs don’t change so why should yours?
If you want to boost your professional practise once you have graduated, we even offer you a discount on Professional Development courses. This is part of our ethos – once a monkey, always a monkey – and we want to support you and facilitate your development as an actor, beyond your initial training.
How to fund your training
The responsibility for funding your training ultimately lies with you and we strongly advise that you consider your means of funding before you attend an audition with us. However, we have experience with how to fund actor training and can help you through the process. We firmly believe that financial constraints should never prevent anyone from training as an actor. There is always a way to make it work. Together, we can support you as you plan a funding strategy.
What you can do
Having access to money doesn’t make you a good actor. But having the resourcefulness to find money to make it happen are exactly the practical skills an actor needs. Although we cannot recommend a particular method of funding your training, we encourage you to do your own research into funding options.
Some suggested and previously successful routes to aid financing the training are:
There are also a range of charitable trusts that have available funds to support young creatives. They include the Prince’s Trust, the William Barry Trust, the Talisman Charitable Trust, The Richard Carne Trust or the Scarr-hall Memorial Trust. You can also do a localised search on Turn 2 Us. Please research these fully before applying, to boost your chance of being successful.
We have put together a Support Letter template, demonstrating how you might write a letter to a funding body. We would recommend showing this to our Development Manager, Neil Onions before sending.
In addition, many of our students work flexible jobs around their training and we support them with these needs by providing a list of associated employers and suggested avenues upon acceptance.
Fourth Monkey is a registered Learning Provider, registration number [REG01-21340].
For further information on financial assistance to support your learning, please visit the GOV.UK website or contact the National Careers Service on 0800 100 900.
What we can do
This is most likely the first time you have funded a course like this, which is why we are on hand to help you through the process. If we have offered you a place, it’s important to us that we find a way for you to access the training.
Once registered to enrol and to join the Fourth Monkey family, we are on hand to support you in your search for additional funding, by searching out grants, sponsorship and helping you with funding applications. We also raise money to help students through ticket sales – £2 of every ticket sold to our productions goes to our Student Support Fund.
Fourth Monkey is proud to be able to offer financial aid to students who would not be able access our training without our support. Every offer of a place on one of our courses is based on talent. Therefore we assign scholarships to those who need assistance most by means testing, based on household income, amount of savings and extenuating circumstances. Scholarships can be applied for after receiving an offer of a place, but do feel free to seek our advice about scholarships before applying.
- Five Patron sponsored scholarships:
- The Jorge de Juan Scholarship, to be awarded to a talented individual who does not speak English as a first language
- The Jonjo O’Neill Scholarship, to be awarded to a male applicant who displays exceptional talent, individuality and personality
- The Paula Paz Scholarship, to be awarded to a young woman who aspires to make theatre as well as train to be an actor
- The Jacques Copeau Scholarship, to be awarded to an applicant with exceptional movement ability
- The Brigid Zengeni Scholarship, to be awarded to a female applicant displaying exceptional talent and ability as an actor
- Two half-scholarships, in association with The Stage newspaper
- The Emrys Johns Scholarship
- The Ronnie Collash Scholarship
On rare occasions, scholarships may be offered at the audition stage, but in most instances, financial assistance would not be given until the actor is in their second year of training on the Two Year Rep programme (scholarships are not available for the Year of the Monkey one year intensive programme). This offers us the opportunity to build a working relationship with you, learn more about your approach to your studies, your attempts at funding the course by other means, personal situation and lifestyle. There is an expectation that you have tried to raise finance elsewhere to support your training.
Fourth Monkey aspire to have the means to offer support for at least half of our student body but until then, we will work tirelessly with you to make sure that nothing stands in the way of your training.