The Central Academy of Drama, the first theatre higher educational institution of the People’s Republic of China, is an educational institution supervised by the Ministry of Education and it is ranked as one of the best top-level drama and stage arts institutions in China. The Central Academy of Drama is the headquarters of China Alliance of Theatre Higher Educational Institutes and Asia Theatre Education Centre (ATEC), and it also acts as a base for the Global Alliance of Theatre Schools (GATS) International Theatre Festival, and it is a world famous higher educational institution of arts.
The history of the Central Academy of Drama dates back to more than 70 years, to April 10th, 1938, when Yan An Lu Xun Art College was established. During that period, it went through the Arts Faculty of North China Union University, the North China University Part Ⅲ. After that, the Nanking National Academy of Drama was merged into, and then officially named the Central Academy of Drama. The Central Academy of Drama opened officially in December, 1949 and held the inaugural conference on 2nd of April, 1950. Chairman Mao Zedong inscribed the official name in calligraphy. The former leaders of the Academy include Ouyang Yuqian, Cao Yu, Zhang Geng, Guang Weiran, Sha Kefu, Li Bozhao, Jin Shan, Xu Xiaozhong, Wang Yongde and Liu Guofu. At the moment, Liu Libin holds the post of the Party secretary, Xu Xiang holding office as the institution’s president.
The Academy's pedagogic and research programs have been subdivided into Department of Acting, Department of Directing, Department of Stage Design, Department of Dramatic Literature, Department of Musical Theatre, Department of Peking Opera, Department of Western Opera, Department of Dance Drama, Department of Theatre Management, Department of Film and TV Arts, Department of Common Subjects, Division of Political Theories, Continuing Education Centre，Drama Research Institute, the Drama Journal, and Center for International Culture Exchange. Majors offered at the undergraduate level include: Acting, Directing, Art Design for Drama, Film & TV, Literature on Drama, Film & TV, Theater Studies, Public Utilities Management, and Broadcast & Anchoring. The Academy has the only state-level demonstration center for experimental teaching in Drama (Film & TV), the only state-level teaching team in acting, the only state-level characteristic major in directing, and the only national innovative experimental zone for talents cultivation in musical acting. The academy has first-class discipline master’s degree and doctor’s degree authorization centers in Studies of Drama (Film & TV), and Theory Studies of Art. The Academy also has post-doctoral research station for art studies.
In the Academy’s long-term history, it continues to uphold the principle of realism, and inherits Chinese aesthetic traditions as well as carefully absorbs from other cultures. The Academy constantly consolidates basis and strengthens practice, and pursues the spirit of “genuineness, creation and beauty”. The institution commits itself to training drama, film & TV art talents for the country and the world. A majority of graduates have become world-famous artists, scholars, professors and writers, who repeatedly receive such respectable prizes as Wen Hua Awards, “Five-One Project” Awards, Plum Blossom Awards, Drama Rejuvenation Awards, Golden Rooster Film Awards, One-Hundred-Flowers Awards, Golden Eagle TV Awards, Flying Fairies Awards as well as the international awards such as Golden Bears, Golden Lions, Golden Walking Sticks, Golden Horses and Oscar Nominations. Among others, they have made remarkable contributions to the prosperity and development of Chinese drama, film & TV industry.
The Central Academy of Drama has two campuses, one is located at Dong Mianhua Hutong No. 39, Dongcheng District, and the other new one is located on Hong Fu Middle Rd No.4, Changping District. Area of these two campuses reach 230, 000㎡, and the construction area is about 180,000㎡. Facing the future, the Central Academy of Drama will firmly grasp the opportunities to deepen the reform of higher education and accelerate the development of the school system. It strives to increase the quality of education and education management, promotes teaching quality and reform construction, and strengthens discipline and high-level faculty team construction. The Academy also promotes organizational innovations, and carries out multilateral exchanges and cooperation with world's drama education institutions. This ensures the comprehensive strength and overall quality of the Academy. The Central Academy of Drama strives to be one of the top-level art schools in the world with outstanding characteristics.