American Musical and Dramatic Academy

American Musical and Dramatic Academy
Type Private
Established 1964
Students Approximately 1200
Location New York City and Los Angeles, USA
Campus Urban

The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) is a college conservatory for the performing arts located in New York City and Los Angeles, California.

The Conservatory offers both Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees and two-year Certificates in Professional Performance. Programs are offered in Acting, Musical Theatre, Dance and Performing Arts.

AMDA is an accredited institution of the National Association of Schools of Theatre.


AMDA was founded in 1964 by Philip Burton along with other prominent people from the New York theatre community to provide practical training by professional performers, for performers. Burton was an acting teacher and is best known as having trained and launched the career of his adopted son, Richard Burton. Emerging from the vibrant arts scene of 1960s Manhattan, the school established itself as a part of the New York performing arts community and garnered early support from members of the Broadway theatre elite such as Sammy Davis Jr., Dina Merrill and Carol Channing.

By 1970, the school had outgrown its original location on East 23rd Street and moved into a new building on Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village. A few years later, further growth prompted another move, this time to the historic Ansonia Building on the Upper West Side. Continued success in the '90s led to the opening of a second building near Lincoln Center, which is now the principal location of AMDA New York.

In 2003 the school expanded west by opening AMDA Los Angeles in the historic Vine Tower Building, one block north of the legendary intersection of Hollywood and Vine in the heart of the Hollywood Entertainment District.

AMDA's programs are designed to prepare students to work professionally as an actor in theatre, musical theatre, dance, film and television, and stage combat. AMDA is the only BFA-granting performing arts college with campuses in both New York and Los Angeles.


The New York City campus is located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The principal facility is located at 211 West 61st Street, directly behind Lincoln Center. The other half of the campus is located at the historical Ansonia building, where Ziegfeld once lived, on West 73rd Street.

AMDA's New York campus features a theatre for learning, skill development and performance. The Ansonia Building features a 100-seat, black box–style theatre equipped with two dressing rooms, a costume shop, a workshop, and backstage space and prop storage. AMDA's New York performing arts library holds an expansive collection of scripts, scores, DVDs and other research material. Students also have access to the extensive library facilities in New York City including the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts, which houses some of the finest theatre script collections in the world and is located just a few blocks away from the AMDA campus. Additional facilities include rehearsal space, film, TV and editing facilities, computer labs and the AMDA Student Store.

The Los Angeles campus is located in the heart of the Hollywood Entertainment District, one block north of Hollywood Blvd. and Vine Street, adjacent to the Capitol Records Tower, with its principal facility in the historic Vine Tower Building.

AMDA's Los Angeles campus features four main theatres for learning, skill development and performance including a black box theatre, two laboratory theatres, and an outdoor amphitheater. AMDA's Los Angeles performing arts library offers a wide range of entertainment reference materials and is also located near the city's extensive public library facilities and Hollywood's famous performing arts bookstores. Other facilities include rehearsal space, film, TV and editing facilities, the AMDA Café, and the campus piazza.

Notable alumni

AMDA has a distinguished record of training students for careers in the performing arts. Among its most notable graduates are:

Notable faculty

AMDA has many teachers and faculty who have many professional connections and credits.

Notable current/former faculty include: Katherine Helmond, Emily Skinner, Amy Stoch, Marcia Milgrom Dodge, Jamison Jones, Karen Morrow, Dan Fishbach, Karly Rothenberg, Caissie Levy and Chryssie Whitehead.

External links

Coordinates: 40°46′21″N 73°59′16″W / 40.772368°N 73.987684°W / 40.772368; -73.987684

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