about DSAYT

Patron: Dame Harriet Walter


Call: 01202 922675


Our aim is to create a safe, secure, supportive and happy environment for young people to discover their creative abilities; to have fun and at the same time to learn and develop performance skills.  We strive to empower students and to build confidence, self-esteem, team work and life skills along with emotional, social and communication skills.  The Dorset School of Acting Youth Theatre is committed to being inclusive and adheres to an equal opportunities policy.


After spending many years performing from a young age, training at recognised drama schools and several years as professional actors in theatre and TV in London, we wanted to use our knowledge and experience to train and encourage others to reach their potential in performance whether professionally or for fun.  With a BA Hons in Acting, in 2003 James gained his PGCE and has also spent eight years as the Head of Drama at Poole Grammar School. 

We knew, in the right hands, the huge benefits that drama could bring. Building confidence and self esteem is an essential part of life no matter what career you choose which is why DSAYT is careful to encourage young people’s development in this area.  Over the last five years we have seen shy and timid students develop into outstanding performers celebrated at a professional level.  DSAYT is able to discover and nurture the true talent within it’s students.

With the launch of our full time school in 2011, Dorset School of Acting prides itself on having established genuine drama school training in the area especially given the support from the principals of major London drama schools.  We have regular contact with a great number of current industry professionals within theatre, TV and film along with prestigious casting directors and masterclass providers in acting, voice and singing.  Some of these professionals train the likes of Daniel Craig, Angelina Jolie and Keira Knightly, Coldplay, The Saturdays and Rizzle Kicks.  Others have also worked as vocal coach and advisor with the first casts of 26 west end shows and worked on productions at the National Theatre, Donmar Warehouse and the RSC.  With all this, we passionately wanted to transfer this knowledge, wisdom and skill to aspiring performers. 

With a London drama school model initiated with DSA full time, it is with this in mind that DSA Youth Theatre is also based, giving students a true understanding of the industry within the older stages while concentrating on personal development in the younger stages.  It is with our knowledge and industry support that we feel, as a school that we have the capability and facility to differentiate; challenging particularly able students who want to progress more seriously and also focus on students who simply want to build their life skills.

With the benefit of knowing the true pros and cons of the industry, we feel it is important to know when and how to guide a student in the right direction and have the expertise, realistic approach and first hand experience to know what the industry truly looks for in a great performer.

James Bowden & Laura Roxburgh






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