Our Philosophy

Our unique psychological approach is winning actors bafta's and ba awards. 


'method acting' started in thespian times and has developed into the acting we know today. the controversial form of 'method acting' has predominantly showcased itself within american actors, however, using a psychological approach with theories of method acting from adler, meisner and strasberg, safa has developed a new programme.  This programme contains a systematic approach that allows the actor to work with the above theories and understand ways in which they can manipulate their own thoughts, feelings and emotions as well as learn how to read others and therefore become studiers of human behaviour.   By doing so our aim is to give the actor the ability to stop performing within a given CIRCUMSTANCE and just actually be in the scene. In essence, stop acting and create something natural.


julie mcgowan, ceo of safa, on safa's approach to acting:

As a psychology student I studied actors with a view to determine if actors are 'born to act' or is it something that can be taught.  I interviewed a large number of working actors from theatre and Screen and quickly recognised a pattern among the actors, one of which was that theatre actors developed their approach to acting differently from screen actors.  When asked how they go about developing their performance theatre actors said that their performance develops during rehearsals, whereas screen actors rarely have a rehearsal.  more often than not the theatre actor used an outside in approach whereas the screen actor used an inside out approach.


It soon became apparent that theatre actors generally rehearse for a number of months using a representational (outside in) approach in which they learn their script, learn about their character, work with their co stars, learn and understand their relationships within the play, so by the time the curtain goes up they feel every bit of their character and give themselves to the audience by projecting a rich and beautiful performance that runs in a natural progressive order. 


However, the problem a screen actor has is that his/HER first day of filming may be scene 30 therefore he/SHE must come prepared on set with all the knowledge, insight and experience of scenes 1-29 on his first day.  Perhaps that is why my study found that screen actors focused more on organic (inside out) approach as opposed to external stimulus to aid their delivery.  HERE AT SAFA WE believe AND TEACH that a screen actor must truly feel the emotion for he has nowhere to hide.  The camera is there, INCHES AWAY. it sees the flicker of an eye, the raise of an eyebrow, the turn of the mouth all those little micro expressions that we are projecting at a subconscious level is there for the viewer to see.  We are rarely aware of when we are showing these little tell tale signs of how we really feel, therefore unless we are truly feeling the given emotion within the scene there is conflicting information from what the viewers are expecting to see, aND what we are actually seeing.  Get this right and you’ll not look like you’re acting at all. 



SAFA - Screen Acting and Film Academy.  Acting in Glasgow.

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this website and its content is copyright of jsa actors ltd trading as safa/screen acting and film academy.  this company was originally established in 2012 as the UK Screen Acting Academy Ltd an organisation designed by julie mcgowan to provide actors from beginners to professionals with the opportunity, training and tools to enable all students the ability to pursue a career in acting for film and television.  safa now has actors in major feature films and tv shows and continues to provide a service that gives all actors the opportunity to pursue a career in acting. 

safa - where students become stars!