About the writer

Andy Johnson is an actor, writer, director and drama teacher. He has taught at East 15, Mountview, Middlesex University and the University of Nevada, and is currently Director-in-Residence at Hurtwood House, Surrey.

This training and information system seems to work; over the years I have helped over400 students win places from my work and many more privately. Recently, 21 of my 22 Hurtwood candidates gained offers; 15 of which were spread through RADA, LAMDA, Bristol, Guildhall, Mountview and Drama Centre.  Gosh now I have written that down, it looks rather brazen.

I think it could be a winner, but I would do, I suppose. It is distilled from a number of years of assisting hundreds of people into top schools.


Barney 2014 – Hi Andy, Unbelievably, I got the part! Thank you so much for all your help, I definitely would never have got it had it not been for your wise words, and amazing help! Never have I had a session which I got so much out of.

Beci 2014 – Hello Andy it’s Beki here , I am writing you to thank you again for the knowledge you gave me the time I met you . I have managed to get big auditions recently and the feedback I have been getting is amazing and positive . All thanks to you mate !

T. 2014 – Hey Andy, Just wanted to let you know that I’ve been offered a place at RADA!!! Your advice on making the speech about being me in the situation rather than ‘a character’ helped hugely and the guidance on not letting myself get nervous and ‘RADA’d’ by the whole day ensured I did my best possible work. Thanks for being so generous and giving the advice you’ve offered.

Oli 2014 – Hey Andy,
Just to let you know that I’ve got an offer from LAMDA and looks like Drama Centre. Wanted to thank you for your help last year. Still use that famous mantra of yours….

Anon. 2014 –
Andy I got recalled to the afternoon!!!! Thank you for your words of wisdom and dealing with my breakdown. I’ll keep you posted. Xx

Anon. PS as I’ve said before, thank you so much for everything you’ve done for me you were such a big help and I don’t think I’d have quite kept it together this year without you.

 Z. 2014 – I got through to the next round at RADA! They sent a letter and my dad rang me – no date yet but they said they’ll be in contact sooner to the time. AHHHHHHHHHH. You’re awesome, thank you – honestly could not have gotten this far without you kicking me into shape X (She got in)

 A Mum 2014 – Hi again Andy, Your book came in handy once again!  I’m sure it helped him – especially when waiting and chatting to other candidates.  My last words to him before he went in were straight from your pages! (He got in)

Article, The Scotsman. March 2013 (Vanessa Kirby) “I didn’t really know how to go about it,” she says, but she remembered a teacher who’d taught a drama course that she did when she was 15 and managed to track him down. “His name is Andy Johnson. There was no bullshit with him. If you were shit he’d tell you. I managed to get his number and I went to see him and he worked me so hard. And it meant that I got into several drama schools. I really don’t know whether I would have otherwise.

“I owe Andy everything.” Johnson had taught Emily Blunt when she was still at school and they had recommended her to an agent. He recommended Kirby to that agent too. “I had a cup of tea with him,” she says. “I think he saw something because he took me on.”

Andy – Bristol Old Vic. I am so proud to be able to write a reference for Andy, as over the many years I feel he has given so much to me as a teacher and a friend that I would love to give something back and be able to tell people of his fantastic qualities.

Antonio – RADA Andy was a major inspiration and still is. He was so passionate about my progress, he took time and put in masses of effort to ensure that I felt confident in my abilities. His enthusiasm for getting the best out of a student is remarkable.

Tanroh – Guildhall.  ‘Andy made me brave.’

Ben. I 100% owe it to you that i got as far as I did. I had told my sister and mum about your mantras, about everything being positive, and being a warrior not a worrier etc. And for literally every round of every audition, those helped me stay calm, collected and myself. My sister keeps telling me how much you helped me not just in the auditions but in a few other things I’ve done recently. My general outlook on dealing with nerves has changed. I found your notes that you gave on the paper at the end of every session a bonus that really helped long after the session too.

2013… This is Georgie’s Mum checking in to say a huge thank you for giving Georgie what can only be described as a master class this afternoon in preparation for her Guildhall audition tomorrow…. Georgie tells me that it has been hugely helpful.

Mac 2013…again I want to thank you for your kindness and generosity and want you to know that everybody who I have talked to that has used your coaching or is still using it says that you are amazing,…

Mrs Simmons 2013. Andy – just want to say a big thank you for seeing P yesterday. She came out buzzing and LOVED her session with you so thank you! Hope to see you soon.

Seb 2013. Just thought I’d let you know that I’ve got into xxxx! Just received the email! Had my xxxx audition last Wednesday which went pretty well – got through to the final interview stage, so just have to wait and see now. Thank you so much for your help…couldn’t have possibly done it without you.

Opal 2013. Many thanks again for my lesson yesterday. I really got so much out of it and have lots to work on this week! I made a start this morning. I really like the ‘and another thing’ exercise. It’s helping a lot with the thoughts as is the one where u push against a hand or wall, it’s helping me not drop off at the end of a sentence.

2013  Gemma. A change for the better and one for the future. I’m so much more confident now than I was this time last year. And for once I actually believe in myself, and that I can achieve what I put my mind to.

2013 Steffi  Re:Juilliard. i got in !!
i am officially a student at juilliard !!!!!
you da best !

Grace 2012. had a few first auditions your voice was in my head “all good nothing bad” hahah

Vanessa B 2012. Hello thanks so much for your help the other day, I am feeling much more confident with the Shakespeare with the techniques.

Gem 2012. It’s incredible. This is a revelation! I am excited to work on my pieces tonight. I have ideas running round my head and things I want to try and everything is taking a new shape in my head. For once, I’m incredibly keen to work on my stuff instead of being afraid of it! Thank you! Sent from my iPhone

2012 anon. Thank you so much for all your guidance. I learn so much from you. You’re great, x  Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange

2011 anon. Andy, I just got a place at royal welsh! Just wanted to say thanks for all your help over these last couple years, couldn’t have done it without you! X

2010 Beth. I just wanted to drop you a line to thank you for your encouragement in regards to drama school auditions. I attended both your workshops organised  at Bristol Uni over the past 2 years, and after you spoke so highly of Royal Welsh this summer I decided to apply for their MA Musical Theatre course. The audition went really well (both my speeches came from your workshops) and after a few weeks I found out I got in!

2010. Anon. Just wanted to say a big thank you, because without your recommendation of them I probably wouldn’t have applied and would now be taking a year out before auditioning again. Hope all is well with you and that you’ve got loads of your students in all the big schools this year!

Other and Older

At drama school you are pushed to your limits and there are no half measures, nor can you settle for anything other than your best. The same is true of working with Andy, hence working with him was a fantastic preparation not only for the audition process itself but also for the rigours of an actor’s training.

The continued support, training and guidance through the whole process is something that not only helped me get into drama school, but something i will carry with me into the profession.”

Andy is a wonderful teacher. He invests not only his time and energy but his heart in what he does. Andy really cares for each student, the progress that they make, and ultimately where that leads them in the acting world. In the private sessions I have had with him, which I have had over several years, Andy helped me realise the potential I had as an actress. Andy teaches with an inspiring sense of spontaneity but equally explains this with a clarity of thought and understanding of the text, and a sense of direction for the session. I was able to try anything and everything to rule out what didn’t work for me as an actor and then able to feel physically and vocally why that was. He is demanding, he’s pushy(in a brilliant way) and he is challenging – but only in a way that helps bring out the best in you. He’s the voice that asks for 110% when you are only giving 99%. He concentrates also on how one must be positive as an actor, about mind over matter and the compulsory need to be prepared for auditions. He is incredibly funny and incredibly detailed in his work. I have opened my monologues ten different ways with Andy – because he will try everything with you until it feels right. However he will similarly stick with one idea when he knows it’s right – even though at the time you might not get exactly why!