The starting point of NÄTY’s teaching is an appreciation of the actor as a thinking, creative artist.

We see the acting profession as a constantly changing process that gains new forms and changes throughout its life.

NÄTY provides training and teaching for two classes at a time. This means that student selections take place either every two or three years. The next entrance examinations will be held in the spring of 2019.

Learning environment

The University of Tampere is, alongside Uniarts Helsinki’s Theatre Academy, one of the two universities in Finland engaging in academic actor training and the research of the performing arts. NÄTY’s teaching emphasises the actor’s independent thought, a multisensory approach, diverse, internationally oriented professional expertise and the capacity to articulate one’s own work in different kinds of contexts.

Teaching and performance collaboration

NÄTY’s teaching is enriched by diverse collaboration with various educational and art institutes. Together with the most significant educational institutes – Uniarts Helsinki’s Theatre Academy, Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, and Tampere University of Applied Sciences – we implement a number of joint courses on both Bachelor’s and Master’s levels.

The diverse acting profession

The profession of an actor requires very special skills and know-how. At NÄTY, the student accumulates the skills and knowledge they will need in their acting profession through meetings with professionals, watching performances and the visits and lectures delivered by experts. At the same time, the actor learns to identify their own place within the changing field of operations and society, and to develop a strong and diverse professional identity.

The moving and dancing actor

The art of acting is thinking with one’s body and through one’s body, requiring an awareness of the possibilities of the actor’s own body and its relation to the world. An actor senses and observes their body and their environment, creating meaning for their observations by naming and taking action, dancing.

The actor and the text

A text is an actor’s central working material and tool. When encountering different texts and when writing themselves, the actor students learn to analyse, organise, edit and interpret the written material. They start to recognise different types, genres and styles, thereby learning to create independent artistic interpretations in their own voice, alone and in a group.

The actor’s dramaturgy

The teaching aims to strengthen the performance of each actor student and to support them in finding their own artistic voice and in building their professional skills. The teaching is based on the idea of special characteristics of an actor’s physical thinking which, when acted out, appears as the dramaturgy of the actor.

The actor’s voice and speech

The voice and speech of an actor serve in many tasks. They are used as a means to think through and physicalise a text and render it personally on the stage. However, they are also an essential part of the actor’s sense of being present and their self-esteem. Voice and speech are used to love, lure, argue and demand.

The actor, singing and music

NÄTY’s teaching in singing and music aims for an actor with a diverse appreciation of music, and a singing and vocalising actor exploring with and trusting their own voice.

Acting in a foreign language

The idea behind acting in a foreign language is that a strange language alienates the actor from some of their preconceptions related to speech, acting and the use of their body. When the known meaning of a word does not limit vocal or bodily expression or the student’s conception of themselves as an actor to the customary extent, the student is emboldened to try more physical and imaginative acting and voice control.

The actor and telepresence

Telepresence is applied in NÄTY’s teaching for a number of reasons. Firstly, the use and research of telepresence in the performing arts has increased steeply in recent years. Secondly, universities are subject to an increasing volume of demands concerning internationalisation and sustainable development, also in terms of the arts. It is these demands that telepresence and other research and practical experiments related to e-learning seek to fulfil.


My learning path

Marketta Tikkanen

Class of 2014–2019

When I started my studies at NÄTY in the autumn of 2014, my understanding and expectations with regard to actor training and being an actor in general were fairly different from what they are now. I thought and hoped that, for five years, I would act as a receptacle for everything I need to know in the acting profession, and after that I’d be ready. I failed to see enough value in an actor’s own thinking; rather, I thought of an actor principally as the implementer and embodiment of someone else’s (the director’s) ideas. I expected to be shaped into an as-diverse-as-possible and flexible actor who can adapt to any kind of role whatsoever.


My learning path

Hannes Mikkelsson

Class of 2011–2016

I applied for and was admitted in to NÄTY in 2011, when I was a second-year student of theatre at the Lahti Folk High School. I think the entrance exams emphasised practising various tasks and they gave a good picture of what the studies would be like.

The first year included the acting work lessons of Hanno Eskola, the key content of which was to work on bringing various source materials to the stage. We prepared small performances, “clown versions” on the basis of art exhibitions, poems, plays and performances. The way I see it, the goal of Eskola’s teaching was an autonomous actor with the ability to independently infuse their acting work with thinking and an interesting, energetic presence. The first year of studies also included playback theatre, the Alexander technique, tai chi and singing and speech lessons. The playback theatre and Alexander technique taught by Tiina Syrjä continued throughout the five-year studying.

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My learning path

Laura Rämä

Class of 2006–2011

NÄTY’s entrance exam was more of a lengthy and odd workshop than a brief visit in front of a panel. Even at that early stage, it became clear that NÄTY devotes time to the skill of rehearsing, and values it, too. This is particularly true with regard to the art of collaboration and its rehearsing – theatre is, after all, essentially group work.

The lecturer of acting work at the time, Hanno Eskola, emphasised how important it is for actors to get out of their comfort zone and engage in something new and strange. This was a good challenge. For me, the five-year training was indeed based on becoming familiar with the strange.