Monday, 17 December 2007

National Student Drama Festival

As highlighted by Chris Wilkinson on the Guardian Unlimted Arts Blog entry, Why Student Theatre Matters, the Arts Council have proposed to cut the funding for the National Student Drama Festival. Click here to sign the petition.

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Advice on Acting

As regular readers will know, I like to see what's going on in the Vancouver Film School (and sometimes dream of enrolling there). In very much the same vane of our Backstage feature they have a blog entry today that may be of interest to you.

Acting grad Holly Dignard plays Nicole Miller on the hit drama series Whistler. We caught up with Holly to ask for her words of wisdom to aspiring actors everywhere.

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Dona Rosita... Ten Years Ago!

Because it's nearly Christmas, I thought I'd post this to make some of you laugh. It's a photo from the last time Mr Calder directed Dona Rosita... ten years ago now! You may recognise one of the Aola's....

Bradon's Got Talent

Mr Widdop as Elvis!

On Monday night the theatre was host to Bradon's Got Talent... a talent show organised by the Student Council. The show was a great success with a completely full house. We even had to turn away 40 plus students due to fire restrictions! Buy your tickets in advance!

Bradon certainly has Got Talent though with performances as varied as group dance routines, singing soloists, duos and trios, solo dance improvisation, beatboxing, a guitar and piano singing group and also a solo pianist who played her own composition! Elvis was even in the building! Click the photo for pictures from the night and video clips will follow shortly.

The student council raised a total of £186 for the Children's Hospice South West. Well done to all involved!

Friday, 7 December 2007

Last Night of Dona Rosita

It's Friday night and it's almost 10pm. I've just got in from seeing the last performance of Dona Rosita. Now, I'm not really allowed to give a review of the show as it would most likely be biased, or you'd all think it was biased because I work here! However, I will say that I have never been more impressed with a group of 14 - 16 year olds. I had to tell the cast that the scene where the lover leaves Rosita gave me goose pimples this evening, and I nearly welled up telling them that! There were actually members of the audience that left with tears in their eyes!

I overheard two of the cast members talking at the end of the show:
Alice: "I'm so sad it's all over! This is my last show at Bradon as well!"
Kat: "I'm not sad it's over, I'm proud we've done it."
Congratulations cast of Dona Rosita. You should be proud!

Thursday, 6 December 2007

All The World's A Stage

Preview was in the Swindon Advertiser last night!

Swindon Advertiser Preview of Dona Rosita

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

"Once a year there should be a trip to the theatre, ballet or opera for every child."

Andrew Haydon comments on the above quote from Tony Hall, CEO of the Royal Opera House, and discusses 'Helping pupils learn to love plays' over at the Guardian Unlimited Theatre Blog. I've left a comment, let me know what you think about it. Would you be satisfied if you only got to see one piece of theatre a year?

Tuesday, 4 December 2007

Opening Night Tonight, Dona Rosita!

Tonight, 7.30pm, the Bradon Forest Theatre presents... Dona Rosita the Spinster, by Federico Garcia Lorca.

There are still a few tickets left for all performances, running from Tuesday 4th to Friday 7th December. Email me to reserve yours now! For a sneak peak at the show, take a look at some photos from last night's dress rehearsal which, by the way, was outstanding. The set and lighting design look amazing, and the cast have really excelled themselves. You will be treated to some truly stellar performances.


Any member of the audience are invited to review this piece of performance and I will be posting a selection on this site. Email me if you have one to submit. Right, I'm off to get the auditorium set up. See you this one evening this week!

Monday, 3 December 2007

Backstage with Lisa Clarke

Lisa is the violinist in McGoozer. Having graduated from London Studio Centre in 2006, she now works front of house at The Old Vic in London, in between dancing with her Swing Company on Strictly Come Dancing, and supporting Pink in Germany!

What made you want to get into your profession?

From a very early age I always knew I didn’t want, what I considered, a ‘regular job’. My parents enrolled me in to a ballet school at the age of 6, which I attended twice a week and dancing soon became something I craved. I also joined an orchestra, playing the violin, at the age of 10 and this became a secondary passion of mine. The more extra curricular activities I did involved with the arts, the more I came to realise that there was no other industry that I wanted to dedicate my life to.

Where did you go after school? Where did you train/study?
I went to the London Studio Centre to do a degree in Theatre Dance.

What age did you start training/study?
I started full time dance training at the age of 18 at the London Studio Centre. Growing up in Belgium meant I had to stay in full time education till the age of 18. This was one of the main reasons I didn’t start full time dance training earlier but I did train part time with a ballet school in Brussels and the Brussels Light Opera Company.

Did you specialise in your current area of work, or are your skills more broad?

I specialised in dance, which is one of the areas I work.

Do you recommend to specialise?
Yes, but always keep options open. Focus primarily on the area you want to work in but don’t cut out other things you‘re interested in. You never know what skills might come in handy. For example I specialised in dance but now I am currently getting more work playing the violin.

How did you find an agent?
One of my agents I found by attending their class at pineapple studios and my other agents I got through auditions, which I learnt about through teachers, the stage and other people attempting to make it in the same profession as me.

What makes you come across well in an audition?
Confidence and having something different to those you are auditioning with, whether that’s a different look, a unique skill or just an ‘easy to work with’ personality.

Are you ever out of work?
I would have to yes when it comes to paid work, which is why it is always useful to have a flexible part time job. But if you work hard enough and love what you do enough, you will always be busy with something to do with the industry your trying to make it in.

Are you selective about the jobs you choose?
I am. Because at the end of the day I don’t see the point in taking a job that I’m not going to enjoy doing. I got into the profession because I love to dance and I don’t want to loose that!

Do you have any words of encouragement for us, or top tips for being successful?
Just that if you love it enough you’ll find a reason and a way to keep doing it no matter how hard it is. Get out of this industry what you want and just remember your doing it for yourself not for others.

Saturday, 1 December 2007

1st December

With NaBloPoMo now over and completed (!) I'm going to celebrate the 1st of December and watch a Christmas Movie. (Sigh)