About Act One

Making Durham Region more "Dramatic" since 1995..........

The Act One School of Drama opened in Pickering in 1995. Initially known as O'Leary's School of Drama, the school's name was changed in 2004, due to the retirement of one of the original owners. In 2006, the remaining original owners, Cecilia Boudreau-Bates and Caroline Harvey, having firmly established Act One as a valuable source of quality performing arts training, at affordable prices, for the Eastern GTA, turned ownership over to the care of Mark Nathanielsz. Mark brought with him many years of theatrical experience in acting, directing, design work, production, admistration, operations and management.

Act One subscribes to the theory that acting and drama are not just for film and stage, but also "life and living". It is this philosophy that lies behind our motto "All the world is a stage". Children and adults come from across the GTA to attend the school. Act One strives to offer valuable opportunities to all - the shy individual who needs to build self-confidence; the hyperactive child who needs to work within a fun, structured environment; those wishing to seriously pursue stage or film as a career or at the community level; students looking for a positive outlet for their creative energies and last but not least, those who simply join for fun, while learning at the same time.

Act One credits most of its success to its teaching staff. All of them draw on rich and varied acting experience, are motivated by a passion for drama and have a love of teaching our next generation of young performers. They share a deep appreciation for how drama has positively affected their own lives and a desire to help others experience the same.

On behalf of Act One and it's staff, as they say on stage - "Break a leg"

Check out some of our students' work....

2017 Year end Vidoe Trailer

2017 Year End Performance Trailer

On Camera Short film project

On Camera Class Short Film Project

Summer Camp Short Film

2019 Summer Camp Short Film Project

2017 Summer camp Session Trailer

2017 Summer Camp Session Trailer

Why Drama?.....

Drama can have a positive impact in a variety of areas, not just from the perspective of a professional pursuit......

  • Drama opens the door to the creativity within each of us.
  • Drama enhances our ability to communicate and express thoughts and feelings.
  • Drama promotes better language skills, vocabulary enrichment and clearer enunciation.
  • Drama encourages our ability to think on the spot and be better storytellers.
  • Drama helps promote a stronger understanding of human behaviour.
  • Drama offers a path to greater reading and comprehension skills.
  • .....and more than anything - Drama is FUN!.

"You see things; and you say "Why?"
But I dream things that never were;
and I say, "Why not?"

George Bernard Shaw

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What Act One Has To Offer..........

Important School Events and Closure Dates
Date Event Notes
August 1, 2023 Fall Term Registration Fall Term Registration Opens. (Students registered in the Fall are automatically registered for the full year).
October 7-10, 2022 Thanksgiving School closed. No classes.
Week of
October 16th, 2023
Fall Registration Deadline
Start of 32-week classes.
After October 16th, new student registration is only possible with expressed instructor permission.
Please contact the school for more information.
If class is 32 weeks duration, it will be scheduled to start this week.
Start of Winter Term registration availability.
December 1,2023 Winter Term Registration Opens Start of registration for joining a class for the Winter Term (Feb to June 2024).
December 22,2023
January 2, 2024
Christmas/New Year School closed. No classes.
Jan 26, 27, 28, Feb 1, 2, 3, 2024 Winter Cabaret Performance dates for 2023-24 End of Fall Term student performances.
February 19, 2024 Family Day School is open. Classes run as scheduled.
February 5, 2024 Start of Winter Term Winter Term classes start this week. Winter Term-only students can join this week.
Please check the Read/Hide More... section of the specific class on the Classes page for its unique start date.
March 11-17, 2024 "March Break" Week School closed. No classes.
Important Chage: Please note that for 2024 there will be NO March Break Theatre Camp .
Apr 5 - Apr 7, 2024 Weekend Of Monologues Show dates for second student performance event, the Weekend of Monologues 
Mar 2 - Apr 1, 2024 Easter School closed. No classes.
May 17-20, 2024 Victoria Day School closed. No classes.
June 2024 Class year End Performances Each class will be scheduled to perform on one day in June.
July-August 2024 Theatre Summer Camps Act One offers four 2-week Theatre Summer Camp sessions for ages 5-14.