Do you want to become a film star

T
his department teaches the basic techniques and methods of acting for stage and screen. We encourage our students to explore their individual creativity and place special attention on dance, physical expression and singing.

Our curriculum provides a solid foundation for either an acting career in film, television or on the stage, or continuing a drama or filmmaking degree elsewhere. As opposed to many drama and acting programs we emphasize acting for the camera, which gives our students the opportunity to learn the basics of film production as well since they work on many film projects over the course of their studies.

Our program offers challenging professional training of the highest standard in the art of acting. You will practice the craft of acting and learn the fundamentals of filmmaking by working in teams with students of other departments in the school. This cooperation runs side by side with the acting studies throughout all four semesters. Our instructors are actors, directors, singers, dancers and filmmakers who come from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences.

You will graduate from our program with a solid understanding of the professional actor’s working methods and obligations and with the self-confidence and independence of a mature creative artist. Whether you go on to become a professional actor or filmmaker or decide to continue your studies elsewhere, you will have built a valuable network of contacts starting right here at school, from your fellow students in all departments to a long list of talented, creative instructors.

Preview of Films

Department 4 prepares you for the following jobs

  • Actor
  • Actress
  • Film maker (all the foundations)

Courses
Acting and motion 1 | LEH 103

Students are introduced to the basic principles of dance, movement and physical expression, all of which can be drawn upon in the actor’s creative process. Emphasis is placed on truthfulness and sincerity in the creative work with the goal of activating the imagination. Students examine people’s everyday physical language and how physical expression is used in films and other media. The student uses his or her own personality as a starting point and through improvisation gains awareness of his or her body and its mobility. Under an instructor students work on a dance and improvisation project to be showcased at the end of semester.

Characterization 1 | LES 104

Students are introduced to the main trends and styles in dramatic expression and characterization. They are trained in the fundamentals of acting, technique and characterization with a focus on tried and true approaches. Emphasis is placed on sincerity, believability, and co-ordination in creative work. The course is intended to be both theoretical and practical. Tried and true approaches are introduced and emphasis placed on group co-ordination, physical improvisation and scene work with and without text. At the end of the course the students work together on an ensemble piece and scenes. The goal is that students learn to appreciate the importance of co-ordination, listening, co-operation and a disciplined professionalism.

Acting and voice: Singing 1 | LRS 102

The students are introduced to the fundamentals of the “Complete Vocal Technique“ singing method. This technique is based on several key concepts of vocal technique which cover all singing styles in varying combinations, from classical singing to heavy metal. Expedient and practical solutions which improve the singing voice immediately are taught. During the introduction the students perform one or two songs suited to their singing voices, with accompaniment.

Acting and voice: Text 1 | LRT 102

The teacher/instructor gives the students insight into the fundamentals of vocal technique and text rendition with breathing and warming-up exercises and trains them in methods which enhance physical consciousness and the imagination. The voice is developed through short texts and poems. Emphasis is placed on making the students conscious of the interplay between voice and physical movement.

Acting technique 1 | LET 104

This course introduces students to the fundamentals of acting technique and dramatic expression and trains the students in them. The point of departure is each student’s personality, experience and imagination. Emphasis is placed on sincerity and truthfulness in the actor’s creative work and how mind, will and body convey dramatic expression. Students research the basic elements that go into characterization through behavioral imitation and learn how to use acting technique as a basis for their artistic creation. They work on short scenes under the direction of the instructor.

Final 1st semester project | LOL 106

Each student submits a 4-to-6-minute film where he or she plays the lead. The script will preferably be original and feature full-rounded characters and realistic dialog. The students produce the project themselves and select collaborators and technicians. The instructor approves the script and oversees the project.

Equipment & technique 1 | TÆK 106

This is a first-semester beginners’ course and the goal is to teach students the basics of film production and the use and application of filmmaking equipment. Furthermore the fundamentals of visual language are reviewed.

Collab. btw departments | SAM 101

Each semester students from all departments must earn one credit in collaboration with other departments. The goals is that each department is ensured access to the other departments and to establish a thriving relationship between the departments.

Film history 1 | KMS 102

Some of the greatest works of film history are introduced, screened and discussed. Ten movies are shown each semester, a total of 40 movies. Each semester represents a section of film history. The movies are screened mostly in a chronological order from the silent era well into the late twentieth century.

Acting and motion 2 | LEH 204

The course in a direct continuation of LEH 103. Students explore different types of dance that emphasize physical expression (body language) and cultivate a consciousness of health and nutrition. Also examined is how we can choreograph movement, dances and technique using different methodologies of the world of dance. Under the direction of the instructor students work on a dance piece emphasizing physical expression to be performed at the end of the course.

Characterizaton 2 | LES 204

A direct continuation of LES 104 where the actors carry on developing their acting technique and characterization and heightening their awareness of the importance of training and exercises in the actor’s daily life. The course is intended to be both practical and theoretical. Emphasis is placed on activating the imagination, characterization and physical expression. The goal is that the students acquire more independence and confidence in their methods. At the end of the course students act out live scenes under the direction of an instructor.

Acting and voice: Singing 2 | LRS 202

This course is in direct continuation of LRS 102 (Singing). Development of the Complete Vocal Technique is continued. Students are encouraged to experiment with different things and challenge themselves in their choices of songs. At the presentation the students sing one or two songs with accompaniment.

Acting and voice: Text 2 | LRT 202

Direct continuation of LRT 102. The actors continue training their voice training with breathing and vocal exercises and emphasis is on the co-ordination of different factors. The goal is to develop the voice with physical exercises, classical texts and poems.

Acting technique 2 | LET 204

This course is in direct continuation of LET 104 and students continue with the basics of acting technique and dramatic expression. Emphasis is placed on sincerity and truthfulness in the actor’s creative work. Students continue exploring the basic elements that motivate characterization through scripted dialogue and scenes and acting technique as the basis of the actor’s artistic and creative freedom. The preparatory process of the actor is thoroughly examined, including the tools at his or her disposal during each phase of the process.

Acting workshop | LEI 106

This course is held in collaboration with the Screenwriting and Directing Departments in the course SVI 104. The course is divided into two parts. During the first part the students work with screenwriting students under the instructor’s direction on story lines and characterization with improvisation. The screenwriters then write the scripts and the actors workshop the dialog during the development process. The authors then complete the process and present the script at the end of the course. For the latter part of the course, the students develop the project onstage with a director and the course ends with a performance of their work.

Equipment and technique 2 | TÆK 204

This course is in continuation of TÆK 106. The goal is to further strengthen the basic technical knowledge of the students in the main fields of filmmaking. Each student then makes a film showcasing a personal style and the student’s skill in his or her field of interest. The film should be able to serve as a promotional calling card for the student.

Collab. btw departments | SAM 201

Each semester students from all departments must earn one credit in collaboration with other departments. The goals is that each department is ensured access to the other departments and to establish a thriving relationship between the departments.

Film history 2 | KMS 202

Some of the greatest works of film history are introduced, screened and discussed. Ten movies are shown each semester, a total of 40 movies. Each semester represents a section of film history. The movies are screened mostly in a chronological order from the silent era well into the late twentieth century.

Acting and motion 3 | LEH 304

Emphasis is placed on the infinite variety of physical expression which is examined in relation to contemporary times through media like news, music videos, soap operas, commercials, movies, etc. Under the direction of the instructor students put together warm-up exercises in different “packages” which can be put to various uses such as warming up for acting scenes, as a preparation for long work sessions, for regular physical exercise and laying the groundwork for a character. Each student creates characters and mini-stories and conducts research through contemporary visual media. They also compose workbooks where they explore physical expression through themes such as the environment, time and physical poses and character behavior. At the end of the course students complete a final assignment, a piece of physical theatre where dancing, acting and physical appearance come together in a seamless whole.

Characterization 3 | LES 304

A direct continuation of LES 204. The actor continues his training in dramatic technique and characterization where the main technical exercises from the last two semesters are intertwined. Emphasis is on the actor/director relationship The courses is intended to be both practical and theoretical. Improvisation is performed on the floor and the students continue to develop their scene work with text. At the end of the course the students work with scenes with emphasis on preparing for auditions for films or television.

Acting and voice: Singing 3 | LRS 302

The singing voice and technique are developed even further using the Complete Vocal Technique. Emphasis is placed on the students working independently and creatively by choosing different songs that develop their singing voice and increase stamina and finesse. At the presentation the student choose one or two songs to perform with accompaniment.

Acting and voice: Text 3 | LRT 302

Continued training of the voice and acting technique. Particular emphasis is placed on integrating voice, mind and body and on proactive working methods. The students work with verse, classical drama and texts of their own choosing. The student works in collaboration with the instructor on a 3-5-minute film (scene) where the nuances of the voice are brought to bear. Emphasis is on an immaculate sound recording and post-production sound.

Acting technique 3 | LET 302

The course is a direct continuation of LET 204. The students continue working with the fundamentals of acting technique and dramatic interpretation. Strong emphasis is placed on sincerity and credibility in the actor’s work and his or her creative collaboration with the director is given particular attention. The organizational process of the actor and the tools at his or her disposal at each phase of the acting process are thoroughly examined. The students work on scenes and rehearse with second-year directing students and record the rehearsal process making detailed plans for their own process through rehearsals. A presentation on the material and the process is given at the end of the course.

History of drama | LLS 102

In this course students use their creativity, dramatic expression and acting technique to examine the role and impact of drama from ancient Greek theatre to the present day, bringing their findings into their practical work through performance. The acting technique of “the clown and the comedian” is drawn on to provide the basis for the independent methods of the students and their performances. The students conduct research into the history of drama through books and gather sources on the subject, write a short essay and create a presentation piece.

Dramatic TV pilot | LSJ 104

Third-semester acting students work on a collaborative project with the other three departments on two dramatic 15-20 minute TV pilots. Acting students play the main parts but one or two professional actors are also engaged to star alongside the students. The purpose of the course is that the students acquire experience by working with professionals making dramatic television programs and gain insight into the division of labor and importance of collaboration on a large production team.

TV series | SJL 103

This course covers all the main types of program-making for television: Entertainment series, chat shows, cooking shows, travel series, reality series, quiz shows, children’s programs, news, news commentary, dramatic series, documentaries, etc. Students are introduced to the main principles of program-making for TV and the relationship between types of shows, slots and scheduling and target audiences. Recent “format” series are given special consideration and answers sought as to why some concepts attain a global following when put into practice. Students conceive and develop ideas for TV series and prepare, in collaboration with second-semester directing and producing students, promotional material to be pitched and sold to representatives of Icelandic TV stations.

Visual language and its use | MYN 104

A look at visual language and composition by viewing and analyzing film scenes from various periods. The students stage a film scene in consultation with instructors and examine the visual language impacts narrative progression and the audience’s experience of the film.

Collab. btw departments | SAM 301

Each semester students from all departments must earn one credit in collaboration with other departments. The goals is that each department is ensured access to the other departments and to establish a thriving relationship between the departments.

Film history 3 | KMS 302

Some of the greatest works of film history are introduced, screened and discussed. Ten movies are shown each semester, a total of 40 movies. Each semester represents a section of film history. The movies are screened mostly in a chronological order from the silent era well into the late twentieth century.

Acting and motion 4 | LEH 404

This course is given in the final semester as a supplementary course for the student’s thesis project. Emphasis is placed on achieving independence in physical awareness based on physical structure and power of movement, characterization and physical expression, with students drawing on their work from the previous three semesters. Students work together on dance videos where special attention is paid to body language, facial expressions, dialog and film acting. Special emphasis is placed on close-ups.

Characterization 4 | LES 403

A direct continuation of LES 304. The actors continue their technical training and characterization. Emphasis is placed on the actor’s independent and creative work based on his or her experience and training. A strong emphasis is on the collaborative relationship between the actor and director. The acting students attend lectures and perform technical exercises under the guidance of an instructor.The course is given in the final semester and intended as a supplementary course to LOL 208, the student’s thesis project.

Acting and voice: Singing 4 | LRS 402

This course is a continuation of LRS 302 (Singing) where we continue developing the actor’s voice and technique with the „Complete Vocal Technique“ method. The course is a supplementary course to LOL 208, the final 4th semester project. Previous curricula and the main technical issues are reviewed. Students set their own goals for the semester and choose songs to rehearse and perform in a final concert.

Acting and voice: Text 4 | LRT 402

In consultation with the instructor the students develop their own warm-up routines connecting body, mind and voice. Classical texts from literature and drama, Shakespeare and selected scenes from films are used as source material and special emphasis is placed on coordinating a variety of elements into a performance and building and releasing tension. Rehearsal in the course are supplementary to the students’ work on their thesis film.

Screenwriting | HHO 102

This course introduces the basic principles of classical screenwriting. The course covers narrative structure, form and style, dialogue, plotting and endings. Students learn the basics of screenwriting software. Those students interested in writing their own scripts for the 4th semester thesis film can use this course for preparation.

Experimentation | TIR 102

This course is intended as a leeway for students to experiment. They are encouraged to investigate new means of artistic creation and expression and to experiment with the narrative form. The student work independently on relating a seminal event in their lives and present their work at the end of the course. The piece should be 5-10 minutes long and students are free to use all tools and methods at their disposal in their creative process. This can be a happening, a piece of art, a musical composition, a performance piece or expression, in visual form or a live event or all of the above at once. Students are encouraged to work together on the creation and presentation of their works at the final presentation of the course.

Thesis project 4th semester | LOL 208

The final fourth-semester assignment is an individual project of the student’s own choosing in consultation with an instructor. This is film project of some kind, preferably 6 to 15 minutes in length. The student is the main author of the project. This means that the idea (which can be a literary adaptation, a stage play or whatever source of inspiration the student chooses) comes from the student. He or she select collaborators both from within or outside the school. The student oversees the entire process from pre-production to completion of post-production. The stipulation is that the student play a pivotal role in the film’s production and a high level of craftsmanship at all production levels is expected.

Contemporary filmmaking | SAT 102

This course covers contemporary filmmaking What trends and vogues have been prevalent during the last decade? What is happening right now and what does the near future hold in store? The course emphasizes student participation in finding answers to these questions. Each student makes a presentation with film samples where he or she discusses contemporary influences and artists.

Collab. btw departments | SAM 401

Each semester students from all departments must earn one credit in collaboration with other departments. The goals is that each department is ensured access to the other departments and to establish a thriving relationship between the departments.

Film history 4 | KMS 402

Some of the greatest works of film history are introduced, screened and discussed. Ten movies are shown each semester, a total of 40 movies. Each semester represents a section of film history. The movies are screened mostly in a chronological order from the silent era well into the late twentieth century.

Contracts and rates | VER 102

This course is intended to prepare students for entering the work force. The establishment of companies, the most common types of job contracts are examined as well as the responsibilities they entail for contractors and clients or employees and employers. Fees and taxes which have to be accounted for are studied, such as VAT, pension funds, union memberships, etc. The students work in groups and develop their own business plans. The course also covers project management, project planning and applications to competitive funds. Examples from the Icelandic audio/visual industry will be considered specifically.

“My years in the Film School were both valuable and good . I matured a lot as a person and an artist , met a lot of good and very talented people , both students and teachers”

Vivian Ólafsdóttir, Gratuated autumn 2011

“There are few things more rewarding than chasing your dreams and to learn more and understand more in the field of your main interest”

Anna Hafþórsdóttir, Gratuated spring 2011