• France
    • Normandy
4 - 12 weeks

Program Details

City Exploring Sightseeing Yoga
Academic Year Winter Year Round
Age Min.
Age Max


Starting Price
$11,745 USD
Price Details
Full and partial scholarships are available
What's Included
Accommodation Activities Airport Transfers Equipment Meals Tour Guide Transportation Wifi
What's Not Included
Airfare Travel Insurance Visa
What's Not Included (Extra)

Language school supplement fee

Apr 06, 2021
Dec 14, 2020

About Program

Creative Semester offers the unique opportunity to combine artistic practice, cultural immersion, arts-based internship, community service and optional French language learning on your gap year. Live in an 18th century chateau in the heart of Normandy and immerse yourself in French culture and artistic practice alongside professional artists. Build technique and skills, complete a portfolio, collaborate on projects and have your work showcased at our ArtsFest in the final week. You'll work with the local community to complete a service or arts activism project and choose between an arts internship, language course or extended filmmaking course. Creative Semester welcomes artists of all levels of experience and from every discipline including Theater, Film, Writing, Studio Art, Graphic Design, Photography and Music. Connect with artists from around the world, cultivate new artistic perspectives and discover where your creativity can take you on your gap year!

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • Live in an 18th century chateau
  • Cultural immersion, arts internships and community service
  • Mentoring with professional artists
  • Optional French language learning
  • Experience life in beautiful rural France

Popular Programs

Creative Semester

Combine cultural immersion, arts internship and community service

Program Reviews

10 Rating
based on 5 reviews
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  • Housing 9.8
  • Support 9.8
  • Fun 10
  • Value 9.8
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 5 of 5 reviews
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Yes, I recommend this program

An amazing, life changing experience

Traveling to France to study acting with a variety of amazing, professional teachers was one of my favorite experiences. I still reflect upon and use the skills and tools I was taught in the variety of classes offered at Berridge. The range in teaching styles and classes provides so much variety to this program. Some of my favorite classes included On-camera and Shakespeare. I had little to no experience with both of those subjects, and at the end of the summer I went away wanting to come back and learn even more. Not only were the staff and classes great, I got to meet so many kind, talented peers that I still remain in contact with today, 3 years later. I can not recommend this experience enough.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Just do it. I know traveling over-seas can be daunting, but you will learn and grow so much.
10 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Berridge Programs

There is too much to write about this program. To say it's magic and changed my life would be true, even if it's hard to believe. I spent six summers with Berridge as a student in Normany, France. The staff is amazing. They are wise, patient, and funny. I learned so much as an actor. What is special about the work at Berridge is that it's not one-size-fits-all. They are passionate about developing who you are as an actor, specifically.

The food is amazing!! Fresh bread from the local bakery every morning and a chef cooks all the meals in the evening. They cater to every dietary preference- vegan, gluten-free, etc. And delicious!

The outings and explorations were awesome--filming around the historic chateau grounds and visiting medieval towns in the area. It is also the ultimate safe space and you are surrounded by beautiful nature.

I can't recommend this program enough. It lets you be who you are as a student, and as a person. 'You are enough.' I have made lifelong friends from this program who have become significant creative collaborators, and who feel like family.

If you are looking through and deciding which place to spend a month of your life, or several, this is the place.

What was your funniest moment?
There was one day where we were on the lawn, and two of the staff members came out in costume and started doing a comedic performance! It was spur of the moment and hard to describe, but amazing and hysterical, using the chateau as the backdrop for a circus.
10 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Berridge Programs

If you are looking for an experience that will completely change your life and give you the tools to succeed in the film or theatre industry, Berridge is the right place for you. Back in 2016, I came back with a my first short film, countless memories, and a family across the globe. Now I am a globally awarded full-time filmmaker and owe it all to Berridge.

First of all, the staff are very approachable and friendly. They feel less like teachers and more like mentors. They will share their real life experiences, then listen to students and create an adjusted experience tailored to their goals and learning style. If you stay in contact with them after the program you might even end up collaborating with them or get more networking opportunities! It is truly an incredible opportunity.

The classes are not really classes. I would consider them either real life experience scenarios or workshops. It doesn't feel like a hassle to get up and go to class because it's very much a hands-on experience. In the film aspect for example, we get a crash course on filmmaking and by the end of the first week, we're already working on our films. Going out and testing equipment, talking about actual real world stuff. Things you only see in the field. We learn what they don't teach you in class. I have shot hundreds of projects after my short film shot at Berridge, some of them getting into very rigorous film festivals, but my mom still thinks that my Berridge film is her favorite. That's how good the production was. Shoutout to Brian.

The Chateau is just magical. Not only does it look and feel like something straight from a fairy-tale, but it stops time. The reason I come back every year is because it literally feels like it stops time. You are in the middle of nowhere, with nothing to worry about, no deadlines, no gossip, no problems at home. You're at peace. I love walking around the house in the middle of the day and seeing people dancing or singing while I serve my cup of tea. Picture High School Musical but in a castle and not annoying. This is what I picture heaven looking like. No joke.

The food? Impeccable. Bogdan, our in-house chef, is a master in the kitchen; nevertheless, he is probably the sweetest person in the program. He also likes to act and sometimes participates in students' films. Him and I are both hot sauce lovers and I get to make some authentic Mexican sauce at times.

Lastly, I have to bring up the field trips. My God... Bayeux is my personal favorite. It is an immersive experience. Everyone is dressed in medieval clothes, there is a massive beautiful cathedral that you can explore, and the food is INCREDIBLE. Every time I go I bring back dozens of souvenirs because you can't find those crafts anywhere else!

People come back every year after (including myself). Some have even come for more than TEN consecutive years. So rest assured, it's THAT good.
Come for the knowledge, stay for the experience.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
Mont St Michel. It is a magical experience. I don't think I've ever seen something so beautiful. Even the Eiffel Tower felt "eh" compared to it. It feels like you're in a Harry Potter set.
8 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Best place to learn and grow as a young filmmaker!

Berridge has been a monumental part of my journey as a filmmaker. I can't think of a better place I could've made my first ever short film. I was in the most inspiring location to write and shoot, and I surrounded by so many other creatives, including a range of actors to cast. On top of being an ideal place to grow as an artist, it's a place that I've gotten so much encouragement as a person. The Berridge staff and my fellow students are still some of the most genuine, caring people I've met, and the connections I've made four years ago are still strong to this day.

After attending the first time in 2016, I returned after my high school graduation in 2017 because I wanted to carry that inspiration with me as I entered college. Even in film school now, I still apply so many of the things that I learned in Berridge.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
I came in as a film student, and I didn't expect to do anything more than make a film. But Berridge offered so many opportunities to find other talents and interests in the performing arts, which I found surprising. After two summers at Berridge, I've found and strengthened a love for performing spoken word and poetry, as well as improv (which is something I never even considered before Berridge).
11 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Berridge Review

Berridge Programs is a place of wonders and fun which teaches you what you need to know in the drama and film department. The experienced staff helps you with your every needs and crafts you into a better storyteller and creative individual. Every weekend, we head out to spots throughout France like Bayaeu and Normandy Beaches to explore and have a great time. During the weeks we dive into our artistry and learn in depth about filmmaking, acting, improv, music, etc. Throughout the program we plan to get our talents and showcase them in a final show.

11 people found this review helpful.

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