Welcome to the future of performing arts training.

Downstage Arts is bringing the performing arts back to how it is meant to be taught—not from a textbook, but with a more direct, personal experience. As individual artists, we all need individual attention. Our post-high school program offers daily private lessons in singing, acting, and dancing, to ensure each student gets the care and attention they deserve. The other classes we offer are directly tied to your future, such as career planning and job exploration, managing your finances and taxes as an actor, physical and vocal health, and even classes that will discuss more life skills topics, such as how to change tires or fix simple plumbing issues. Stuff we all wish we actually learned in school.

When students complete our program, they will be more confident in their skills, artistry, and knowledge of the industry, so they may conquer any avenue of the performing arts they wish to explore. The time they are paying to be in school is crucial, and we want help them take advantage of every moment they are with us, to ensure they are getting the most for their money. We understand this is an investment, and we are here to serve each student who walks through our doors with an invaluable suite of services. We will connect students with local theatres, directors, and agents right away, so our students can start building relationships with working professionals while enrolled in our program. With the possibility of professional engagements, we ensure that classes end early to accommodate evening rehearsal schedules—enabling students to work with industry professionals and companies during the academic year, as well as during the summer seasons. Students will be taught by professionals who are currently working in the industry, making sure they are up-to-date with all industry trends. We don't want students to have to choose between giving higher priority to school or theater-industry work.

Downstage Arts Trade School maintains a unique competitive advantage over other existing performing arts training programs in several categories. Our biggest differentiators include:

Private Instruction

Students receive private instruction daily. This individualized attention helps the teacher meet each student at their skill level and in partnership with their learning style—to completely master their craft.

Lower Cost

Our program costs less than the average price of our competitors.

Focus on Diversity and Inclusion

Chicago is an extremely diverse city, and we believe art should always reflect its community. We will focus on admitting students that reflect our community's diversity.

Focus on Holistic Arts Education

Not only will you learn the skills of your desired trade, but you'll learn what it means to take charge of your career path.

Focus on Mental and Physical Well-Being

We reject the unrealistic standards of the past and want to create healthy artists that recognize their self-worth, by utilizing the skills to take care of themselves and their communities.