Connecticut College is the school of record for the National Theater Institute. 20 credit hours or 5 course credits are awarded to undergraduates who successfully complete the Moscow Art Theatre Semester. Final grades are reported to Connecticut College where they are recorded by official transcript and forwarded to the student’s college or university registrar upon request. Connecticut College is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. RUSSIAN THEATER HISTORY AND CINEMA (MXT-251) Designed to familiarize students with the rich history of the Russian cinema and theater, especially the Moscow Art Theatre and the Stanislavsky System, the course includes regular lectures, screenings as well as theater, museum, and cultural visits. RUSSIAN LANGUAGE (MXT-252) Intensive language immersion appropriate for beginning and intermediate level students of the Russian language. Advanced level students have a special class to improve their language skills. ACTING (MXT-253) Daily classes in all phases of acting technique with special emphasis on Stanislavsky and the Expressionist directors. Extensive scene work concentrating on Russian dramatists such as Chekhov, Gorky, Gogol, Ostrovsky, as well as contemporary playwrights. DESIGN (MXT-254) An introduction to the world of Russian set and costume design and to the profession itself as prominent designers discuss design theory and history. MOVEMENT AND VOICE (MXT-310) Movement classes include Droznin, classical folk dance, scenic movement, and ballet, and how they relate to building a character. Weekly classes in singing. Classes focus on developing the actor’s imagination in connection with the training and development of the physical and vocal instrument.


"I did not understand what theater could truly be before I went to Moscow. Now I know and my life will never be the same."
"At Moscow Art Theater School, I quickly learned that the most daunting task would not be living in a foreign country; it would be leaving a school that had quickly became my home, my classroom, and my foundation for an entirely new way of viewing theater. Within my first week, I had developed a working relationship with my ensemble, had theater history class with one of Russia’s most beloved scholars, and had discovered muscles in my body that I did not even know existed through Ballet, Stage Combat, and Droznin."

"I studied with some of the best of the best. It was in no way easy, but it is this kind of rigorous training that I wanted from this experience. I loved every second of my training."


Fall 2020 UPDATE After careful review, planning, and reassessment with our partners in Moscow, we do not feel confident that travel to Russia is in the best interest of our students this fall. For the first time in 29 years, we will not be offering our Moscow Art Theatre Semester this Fall. This is a joyless decision and one that we did not make lightly. Dozens of students were accepted into this program and we are working with them individually to determine the best next steps for them (studying with NTI in the fall/spring or deferring to MATS '21, etc.) We believe in their artistry and have a place for them at NTI when the time is right. MATS Fall 2021 will be held September- December 2021, exact dates will be announced shortly. The 2020 comprehensive fee of $27,000 includes:

  • Orientation at the O'Neill in CT
  • Airfare to/from Moscow with the ensemble
  • Tuition
  • Housing
  • Theater & Museum Tickets (up to 20 shows a semester)
  • Weekend trip to St. Petersburg
  • Two Official Transcripts
  • Note: Meals not included.
The numbers below are a quick look at additional expenses for the average student attending a semester with NTI. In cases of financial hardship, NTI is able to help defray the cost of books and supplies. Please contact with questions.
  • Travel to CT in September ~TBD by student
  • Travel from NYC airport in December
  • Visa Fee ~$400
  • HIV Test ~$200 (if not covered by insurance)
  • Books & Supplies~$400
  • Personal Expenses ~$800 (approximate for laundry, transportation, sundries, & souvenirs).
  • Meals ~$1,300-$2,200 (options include school cafeteria, restaurants, & dorm kitchen)


NTI endeavors to ensure access & opportunity to all students seeking a semester with us, regardless of economic circumstance. For that reason, NTI offers need-based scholarships through a need-blind admission policy. > Learn more about Scholarships & Financial Aid.


You Asked. We Answered. Visit our FAQ page.


The Moscow Art Theatre School faculty is world-renowned. These masters have decades of experience teaching and working in Russia as well as a longstanding relationships with NTI, teaching American students. Core faculty includes: IGOR ZOLOTOVITSKY- President of the Moscow Art Theatre, Igor graduated the Moscow Art Theatre School in 1983. Upon graduation, Igor became a member of the Moscow Art Theatre Company. Since 1989, Igor Zolotovitsky has been a teacher with the Moscow Art Theatre School and in 2002 gained the title of Master Teacher. Igor regularly works with international programs in Moscow such as the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's National Theater Institute and the American Repertory Theater at Harvard University. Igor has taught acting in Paris, Italy, and Spain. He is currently the leading actor at the Moscow Art Theatre. Credits include work in Russian TV and cinema. He is formerly the Dean of the Moscow Art Theater School. SERGEI ZEMSTOV - Sergei graduated from the theater school in Gorky, Russia in 1979. Upon his graduation, Sergei worked as an actor in Gorky Youth Theater and Gorky Academic Drama Theater. In 1983, Sergei graduated the Moscow Art Theatre School and worked in many different Moscow theaters. From 1991 to 1997, Sergei worked in Paris at “Ecole du Passage” theater school. Sergei has worked as a director in Paris, New York, and in Moscow. In 1994, Sergei began teaching acting at MATS and since 2002 has worked as a master teacher. Sergei is the Dean of the MATS Acting Department. Sergei has worked with different international programs including the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's National Theater Institute, American Repertory Theater at Harvard University, and Wayne State University). ILJA BOCHARNIKOVS- lja graduated from the Moscow Art Theater School in 2006. In 2015, he graduated from the directing program at the Meyerhold Centre. He worked as an actor at the Stanislavsky Theater in Moscow from 2010-2013. Ilja has also directed two season at the Theatre-studio Yorick in Riga. From 2010, Ilja has been working as an adjunct professor of drama at the Moscow Art Theatre School. In 2011, Ilja directed Stairway to Heaven with MATS students, followed by a production of Our Town in 2013 (nominated “Best Student Show of the Year”.) Ilja has directed many shows and showcases at Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas in Moscow. Ilja works with many international programs at MATS including the National Theater Institute's undergraduate fall semester, A.R.T. graduate spring semester, and Wayne State University). Ilja also works abroad in Latvia, Hungary (Theater Institute in Kaposavar), Germany, and the United States (Stanislavsky Summer School in Boston and A.R.T. Harvard). VLADIMIR SAZHIN - Vladimir graduated the Vakhtangov Theater Institute in 1982. In 1993, he graduated the Droznin Program at the Vakhtangov Theater Institute (MFA in Stage Movement). He has also worked at the Stanislavsky Theater as an actor and as a plastic director throughout different theater schools in Russia. He is a movement teacher at the Moscow Art Theater School and director of plastic performances. IRINA NIKIFOROVA - Irina is the esteemed choreographer and Moscow Art Theatre School dance professor who teaches ballet and folk dance. BATRAZ ZASEEV- stage combat instructor and graduate of Shchukin school ALEKSANSDR POPOV - Aleksansdr is a theatre producer, playwright, and historian, who leads open discussions on topics ranging from the history of Moscow Art Theatre to analytical discussions on contemporary productions. ELENA LISINA - Elena is the Russian language instructor for the students of the Moscow Art Theatre Semester.


> View the Moscow Art Theatre Semester sample schedule. A Day in the Life at the Moscow Art Theatre Semester 7:00am – Wake up! Quick shower, double-check I have my sides and notebook in my backpack, and then head down to our kitchen to make some coffee. 8:15am – My roommate and I leave our dormitory to head to the theater. It’s only a 10 minute train ride, but we want to make sure we’re plenty early for class. 8:50am – Everyone is at our studio ten minutes early to set up the room for our Movement class. We primarily study Droznin Russian movement, but we lay out yoga mats for our warmup. I have a whole new confidence in what my body can do after this class, and the partner acrobatics have given us a great sense of ensemble. 11:15am – We quickly change clothes and then head into our singing class. We’re learning a Russian folk song, and we spend a lot of today practicing our vowel shapes. It’s a challenge, but I’m learning so much about Russian culture by learning this music. 1:00pm – Lunch! MATS has a cafeteria we all eat at most days. It’s a great chance to chat with the Russian students, too. We all speak partly in Russian and partly in English, and they recommend a great banya to visit this weekend. After our intense movement class this morning, it’ll be great to sit in a sauna and relax. 2:30pm – Our daily acting studio dives into the Stanislavski technique. We’re starting to get a handle on etudes, incorporating more and more text each week. MATS has also taught me how to learn by watching other people rehearse, too. Even when I’m observing, I still am making discoveries about my own work. 5:30pm – Since we’re seeing a performance tonight, our ensemble heads back to the dormitory to change clothes and we grab a bite to eat at a restaurant near the theater. We warm up with tea and a piece of chocolate, and I notice how comfortable I feel out on the town than I did our first week here. Being immersed in a totally different culture like this is an incredible experience. 7:00pm – Tonight we see Wolves and Sheep by Ostrovsky. Russian theater is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Even when I can’t understand all of the text, I still leave the theater moved and inspired. 10:30pm – We leave the theater and wait until we’re back at our dormitory to discuss it. The Russian metro is much quieter than any subway I’ve been on the in the US, and we’re all still soaking in how incredible the show was. After a thorough talk through, my scene partner and I run our lines from studio a few more times to make sure we’ve worked in our notes from today. 12:00am - Bedtime! Days at MATS are long, but packed full of incredible opportunities and experiences. I can’t wait to get up tomorrow and do it all over again.