Applications are currently not being accepted for American Conservatory Theater’s MFA in Acting program. To be notified about our next application cycle, please contact

We encourage people to consider A.C.T.’s other actor training programs; some which are being temporarily offered entirely online, including the 15-week San Francisco Semester.

Audition Information

A.C.T. holds auditions for the M.F.A. Program each year during January and February in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco.

Walk-ins will be also accepted on each audition date.

Final callback auditions for qualified applicants are subsequently held in San Francisco. Housing and travel stipends for the final callback weekend will be available to applicants who demonstrate need.

Applicants must prepare two audition selections that provide a contrast in mood and tone (one from a classical verse play and one from a contemporary play). Sonnets, poems, songs, and other nondramatic materials are not acceptable.

Please limit selections to a total of four minutes to allow time for an interview.

For degree/certificate requirements, please see the 2019–20 M.F.A. Bulletin, p. 39.

For more detail on the audition process, see our FAQ below.

Audition FAQ

Q: Can I audition by sending in a DVD of my work? Or can I include a DVD of my work to support my application?

A: No. Given the unique nature of training actors for live theater, it is important that you audition for us in person. Please submit only the items requested on the application form.

Q: Does A.C.T. offer audition coaching?

A: No, but we do keep a list of actors/instructors we regularly work with who offer private audition coaching. To request that information, please email All of these coaches work out of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Q: What constitutes a classical or contemporary monologue? How long should my pieces be?

A: Your classical monologue should be in verse—plays by Shakespeare and Molière are good resources. Successful contemporary monologues typically come from plays written from 1970 to the present. Combined together, the total time of BOTH monologues should be no longer than four (4) minutes. We recommend that you consult a current instructor or advisor, who can help you determine if your chosen monologues best represent your abilities.

Q: Does A.C.T. offer walk-in auditions?

A: Yes. Once the initial deadline has passed, a walk-in application form will be available on the website. Instructions for walk-in applicants, including a list of available audition times, will be posted just outside the audition room at each site on the day of the audition. Please be prepared to wait for a slot to open. We do not schedule appointment times for walk-in auditions in advance.

As instructed on the website, please bring two copies of your headshot and resume to your audition.

As a reminder, submitting an application does not guarantee you an audition time. You must arrive the day-of and check availability with the auditors.

You will be asked to present proof of your walk-in application and online payment of the fee by showing your submission confirmation email, either digitally or in hard-copy form. If you are unable to provide this evidence, you will not be permitted to audition. We do not accept cash, check or money orders.

If you participate in preliminary callbacks, you will be required to upload all supplementary materials, including headshot and resume, essay, current transcripts, and letters of recommendation.

Q: Where/when do I fill out a walk-in application?

A: Walk-in applications can be filled out at any location and date of the audition tour at the A.C.T. table. Walk-in applications are only available day-of.


Q: Where are walk-in auditions held?

A: Walk-in auditions are held in New York at Tisch School of the Arts, in Chicago at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, and in San Francisco in American Conservatory Theater’s studio spaces.


Q: What should I prepare for a walk-in audition?

A: The audition requirements are the same for a walk-in audition. Applicants must prepare two audition selections that provide a contrast in mood and tone (one from a classical verse play and one from a contemporary play). Sonnets, poems, songs, and other nondramatic materials are not acceptable. Please limit selections to a total of four minutes to allow time for an interview


Q: When are callbacks?

A: Preliminary callbacks are held at the end of each audition day. At the end of the morning and afternoon sessions, we will post a callback list just outside the door of the audition room. Final callbacks are held in San Francisco.

Q: If I don't receive a preliminary callback, does that mean that I will not be accepted to the A.C.T. M.F.A. Program in Acting?

A: In all likelihood, if you have not received a preliminary callback, you will not be invited to final callbacks for the program.

Q: Once the audition process is over, can I receive feedback on my audition?

A: Unfortunately, no. Given the number of auditions, we are unable to offer critiques of individual auditions.


Download more information about A.C.T.'s MFA Program and
San Francisco Semester.

Application Info


Applications for MFA Class of 2024 will open later.


Visit our MFA FAQ page or email

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