About LAMDA Exams

Established in the 1880s, the London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art, or LAMDA for short, is the oldest drama school in the UK, and is a world-leading conservatoire and globally recognised awarding body for its range of prestigious drama examinations. These exams, similar to graded exams in music and dance, are designed to nurture self-expression, self-assurance, achievement and empowerment, while offering valuable qualifications, which at Grades 6, 7 and 8, carry UCAS points towards university entry.

Why choose a LAMDA exam?

LAMDA offers a wide range of exams – see below for a list of subjects. No matter what direction you may follow in the future, these exams provide the opportunity to nurture your natural abilities and skills and so empower you to fulfil your potential. Tuition is available both online and in person.You can be assured of outstanding tuition from an experienced LAMDA examiner and teacher with an impressive track record of success. LAMDA exam sessions are held termly in Lancaster, Burnley, Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, London etc.

LAMDA exams will develop your ability to:

  • read easily, fluently and with good understanding
  • expand vocabulary to improve powers of self-expression
  • improve confidence in speaking and listening
  • interpret and perform a range of drama, poetry and prose
  • memorise and recall information
  • deliver persuasive formal presentations
  • creating and defending arguments working successfully alone or in a team
  • engage in constructive informal conversation
  • develop vital life skills

What LAMDA exams/subjects are available?

  • Introductory: Stages 1, 2 & 3

  • Acting: Grades 1-8

  • Devising Drama: Grades 1-8

  • Miming: Grades 1-8

  • Speaking of Verse & Prose: Grades 1-8

  • Reading for Performance: Grades 1-8

  • Speaking in Public: Grades 1-8

Introductory exams

LAMDA’s Introductory exams are designed to introduce you to creative expression and to the LAMDA examinations framework. They are the perfect start for both young learners and those who have never taken an exam before. By learning the words of a fun poem from the likes of Michael Rosen and Valerie Bloom, you are developing the ability to express yourself clearly while also improving memorisation and recall. Not only that, you’ll also gain in self-confidence as you talk about the things you love, like a favourite toy, place or book. These conversations will encourage you to feel at ease with answering questions, listening and using description.

Acting exams

LAMDA Acting exams are designed to develop your vocal, physical and interpretive skills as you delve into characters and explore the background of dramatic texts. Alongside producing authentic performances of your chosen scenes, you'll also gain an understanding of the context and characters within them. You'll always have plenty of choice and can follow your interests. Plays can be old, from the likes of Sophocles, Shakespeare, Behn, Haywood, Sheridan, Ibsen, Wilde and Coward, or from contemporary playwrights such as Caryl Churchill, John Godber, Dennis Kelly, Lucy Prebble, Simon Stephens, Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Tanika Gupta.
The Acting exams also help to develop key life skills, such as understanding and empathy, by allowing you to engage with different circumstances and/or situations in a practical way. They also promote creative thinking and exploration, whilst enabling you to acquire memory skills, spatial awareness, vocal confidence and physical presence.

Devising Drama exams

If you want to make your own work, the Devising Drama exams allow you to create your own scenes from scratch. Provided with a list of themes to pick from, you’ll create the characters and write the scripts yourself. As you progress to the higher grades, you’ll develop an understanding of dramatic structure and staging, using movement, mood, style and space. At Grade 6 and above, you’ll also perform short improvised scenes – unplanned and unscripted.

Miming exams

Mime allow us to communicate without using a single word. Through single mimed activities and fully developed scenes, you’ll work on coordination and control, physical awareness and precise movements of your body to articulate emotion and characterisation in your storytelling. You’ll also create your own work, expanding your physical theatre skills as you assemble your own scenes. At the higher grades you’ll discover the work of famous mime artists like Charlie Chaplin and Marcel Marceau and learn the history of one of theatre’s most influential forms, commedia dell'arte.

Speaking of Verse and Prose exams

The Speaking of Verse and Prose exams allow you to explore literature in an engaging and practical way and develop solid communication skills. Developing a good speaking voice is key for these examinations and you’ll recognise how to use your voice in different ways to provoke different reactions. Equally important, memorising a number of pieces will encourage self-discipline and focus. Technically, you’ll develop skills in voice, diction, posture and body language. An in-depth knowledge and appreciation of the literature will also be achieved as you study each text and communicate it to the imagined audience in an engaging way.
At each grade, you’ll perform a set verse and/or prose selection and an own choice selection from memory. You’ll also answer questions about your chosen selections and any other theory required for the grade. At Grades 6 and above, you’ll delve into sonnets, exploring the life and work of Shakespeare and discussing his influence, as well as discovering the other writers whose works you are performing.

Reading for Performance exams

A Reading for Performance exam explores the art of bringing a book to life by selecting texts and forming them into a themed performance recital, linking the works with your own words.These performances are animated, imaginative and designed to draw in an audience by using movement and vocals to reflect the contrasting texts. At Grade 6 and above, you’ll use your research skills to prepare the recital, as well as sight-reading new texts.

Speaking in Public exams

Speaking in Public exams will prepare you for a task that daunts so many people. You’ll write your own speeches, researching the topics, creating visual aids and presenting them from memory (although you can use notecards, if you prefer). You’ll learn the techniques required to engage an audience and to structure your speeches effectively, developing the confidence to deliver clear, focused and polished speeches, as you build the foundations of successful public speaking. At the higher grades, you’ll be asked to create an impromptu speech with minimal preparation.

Want to know more about LAMDA exams or tuition? Then please get in touch.