BADA: An Intensive Conservatory in the Best Place in the World to Study Acting Past Review

By (Theatre, Indiana University - Bloomington) - abroad from 09/07/2012 to 12/15/2012 with

Sarah Lawrence College: London - London Theatre Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
This was one of the best experiences of my life. I gained so much confidence and skill due to the intensive classes and the teachers who genuinely cared about each student and pushed us to reach our potential. I fell in love with London and am so thankful I got to live there and experience the beautiful culture, history, and the best theatre I have ever seen.

Review Photos

Sarah Lawrence College: London - London Theatre Program Photo Sarah Lawrence College: London - London Theatre Program Photo Sarah Lawrence College: London - London Theatre Program Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

A very intense program, so perfect for those who want an in-depth, all-encompassing conservatory experience. The different classes complemented each other and were all valuable. The program also exposes students to London theatre and some of the most renowned actors and theatre professionals currently working in London.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I tried to stay for another semester but needed a scholarship to afford it. I paid in full for the first semester and had no money left for another semester in London if I was going to do my final semester in Indiana. I wish they could have worked with me more to figure out a way for me to stay.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The location of the flats was right in central London, a few blocks from Hyde Park and Oxford Street. However, it was a long 40 minute walk to the school, and many of us ended up spending a lot of money on buses when it started getting dark earlier in the day and really cold. The flats themselves are in desperate need of renovation and the bedrooms are all different sizes in the 6-person flats, which seemed wrong because we all paid the same amount for housing. That being said, the living arrangements are worth bearing for this incredible program.

* Food:

Awesome coffee and wonderful markets to pick buy local food all around London. My only complaint is how expensive everything was. I wish Sarah Lawrence could have given us some kind of meal plan or stipend to reduce the ridiculous costs.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The local people were all really helpful whenever we got lost or didn't understand certain common customs at first. The only concerning aspect was that our neighborhood was the Arabic neighborhood of London, so most girls felt uncomfortable going out at night in small groups or without a boy, and there were a lot of stores we weren't comfortable going into.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

The school was very understanding when people got sick, which happened to almost everyone at least once during the program (take Vitamin C every day!). In one instance, a girl had to be taken to the hospital after a show, and the Dean and Associate Dean drove her themselves and I believe stayed with her until she was admitted and comfortable.

* Safety:

I always felt very safe inside BADA, in the flats, and walking around (except in our neighborhood at night, which I mentioned above). In fact, one night some, shall we say, "sketchy" guys kept coming into my flat into our flat and causing problems, and the front desk called to make sure everything was okay and remind us they were always there if we needed them. There is a guard at the door 24/7 and a key to get into the building as well as your own flat.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not easy- more like impossible. We had to pay for our own food and transportation. And of course there was the added expenses of shows and attractions. The food and transportation probably cost more than everything else.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $200
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? The student oyster card is not worth getting because it costs 10 pounds and the discount is only applied when you buy a weekly or monthly pass. Buying groceries instead of going out to eat often will save you a lot of money. Always check to see if a show or theatre has student or youth discounts or rush policies. Most of my theatre tickets I bought myself ended up being between 5 and 15 pounds as a result.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The city and the theatre
  • The classes and teachers
  • The other students
* What could be improved?
  • Housing location Wifi limitations, and interior conditions
  • Financial help with food and transportation
  • Making the program last longer
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had prepared more for my classes and had been better-educated about the layout of the city and how to get around.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!