The Thrive Program

A Specialist Performing Arts Day School Program

Apply by Sunday, 14 January to start in 2024

Does your child have something special when it comes to performing? Would they prefer acting, singing and dancing to all other electives at school?

Your child may be a great fit for the Thrive Program!

The Thrive Program is an educational program for students in Years 7-10, offered as an alternative to traditional schooling for aspiring young performers. 

  • Students attend our Griffith campus in Canberra five days a week, between 9am-3:30pm daily.
  • Mornings are devoted to academic study via distance education with a registered state school in Queensland, the Cairns School of Distance  Education (CSDE). CSDE becomes your official (registered) school, but you do your academics onsite in our classroom, with the support and supervision of our teacher.
  • Afternoons are devoted to a special performing arts program consisting of actor training, song and dance, and performance skills. Our special performing arts training program becomes your selection of "electives" to support your other school subjects at CSDE. 
  • Performing arts lessons are taught by professional actors, directors, vocalists, and dancers. The Thrive Program is an acting program, with some song and dance included.
  • After you complete Years 7-10 in Thrive, you can move onto the Young Professionals Program for Year 11-12.

Meet our Principal to talk about the program

The easiest way to find out whether the program is right for your child is to book a 'Meet and Greet' with our Principal, Elizabeth Scott. She'll explain the program in detail and answer any questions you have.

  • If you are in Canberra, you can meet at our studio and have a tour of the facility.
  • If you are outside of Canberra, you can book a Zoom meeting.


Meet and Greets are conducted in the afternoons between 3 pm and 5 pm.

Fill out the form below and we'll get in touch to arrange a time for you.

What students and parents say

"I love being able to participate in acting, singing and dancing with people who share the same passions as me. I love being in the supportive community Thrive provides which helps each other and makes the school an amazing place to learn the arts."

- Kailani, Year 9

"Moving to Thrive after nine years of public schooling was an enormous change... but we are thrilled we climbed on board as the ride was, and is, definitely worth it!"

- Jocelyn, Parent

"Thrive has provided a nurturing, stimulating and safe environment for our daughter, allowing her to both be herself and to grow and learn the performing arts and academic subjects. The management and staff could not be more supportive."

- Michael, Parent

Why should you choose the Thrive Program for your high school experience?

  • You absolutely love acting and performing
  • You're keen to learn from industry professionals
  • You're looking for a different way to do high school education
  • You are consistent academically, and work well with distance/online learning
  • You are thinking about a career in arts and entertainment
  • You are willing to try new things, are open to learning, and able to think outside the box
  • You prefer a small school environment
  • You want to be with others who love the same things.

How Thrive is different from a regular high school experience


A multi-age classroom

Students mix with students outside their year group during school time. While academic lessons via distance education are conducted at year level, performing arts classes are conducted with all Year 7-10 students combined.


A (very) small school community

The Thrive Program generally consists of no more than 15-25 students. This means that students must develop friendships, face problems, and learn to resolve conflicts within the group.


A high level of independence is required

With the support of our Academic Adviser, students in the program must manage their own distance education and performing arts workload. When it comes to performing arts, students are expected to memorise their lines for plays and practise their songs and choreography in their own time. The Thrive Program suits students who are self-disciplined and self-motivated.


Professional performers teach students

Students in the Thrive Program learn from professional actors, vocalists, dancers and other performers in their performing arts classes. Perform Australia offers training under teaching artists from industry, rather than high school teachers.  Teaching artists introduce students to industry expectations across all performing arts fields.


An immersive performing arts experience

Through Thrive, Perform Australia offers a program which is approved by the Cairns School of Distance Education. Effectively, our specialist training program replaces any elective subjects a student may study at a regular school, and complements the academic learning provided by CSDE.

Because Perform Australia is not a school, you cannot bring the same expectations to it as to a regular high school. For instance, we do not have access to all the things you may find at a regular school (e.g. learning or disability support), and we do not offer experiences like NAPLAN, cross country competitions, athletics/swimming carnivals, and so on. We do, however, offer a range of exciting performance opportunities throughout the year (from plays, to musicals, to concerts. eisteddfods, as well as excursions), and fitness is integrated into dance, voice and movement studies. The Thrive program has a whole-hearted performing arts focus and will appeal to students who are committed to immersion in the performing arts. This program will suit young people who love performing, are independent workers, and who bring energy and life to whatever they do.

What else the Thrive Program offers:

The study of acting teaches valuable life skills, such as:

  • Improved ability to communicate
  • Improved self-presentation skills
  • Increased empathy for others
  • Improved literacy / textual analysis skills
  • Improved capacity to work in a team (or in an ensemble, as actors put it!)

Whether your child ultimately wants to become a professional performer or not, the Thrive Program still delivers these skills.

What happens after Year 10?

Students matriculate to the Young Professionals program where they study two acting qualifications in two years, plus can achieve their Year 12 Certificate if they choose. More here.

The Thrive Program

Get your Audition Pack & Prospectus

Fill out your details to download the Prospectus and your audition information for the Thrive Program.

How to apply for the Thrive Program

Entry to the Thrive Program is by audition and interview. We're now accepting applications for 2024. 

You can apply any time between now and 11:59 pm Sunday, 14 January 2024

However, we advise you to put your application in as soon as possible as there are limited places in the class, and once those places are taken, additional applicants will move to a waiting list. If there are still places left after 19 November, we may open for a second round of applications.

To apply, you must:

  • Complete the online application form
  • Prepare a song and a monologue as per the instructions in the auditions pack
  • Present your audition (either face-to-face or via video) and attend an interview.

Ready to apply?

Complete the application form below by Sunday, 14 January 2024:

Want to find out about our Year 11-12 program?

Click here.

Got questions?

Call us on 1300 908 905.