Spotlight & Actor Awareness present ‘Intergenerational Night’

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Monday, 15 August 2016 from 19:30 to 21:30

Spotlight UK – 7 Leicester Pl, London, WC2H 7RJ

Our first Spotlight sponsored event is coming 15th August. Spotlight are even giving away free tickets to those registered with them. So go to the eventbrite link and book your ticket now for a awesome night of new writing!

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Spotlight are supporting us with this exciting new project . This is an integration of younger and older actors learning off of each other and tackling the issue under-represntaton of older actors in the industry. So please come and support these incredible new short plays.

Plays

Our Father by Stephanie Silver
37 by Nick Mwaluko 
Safe Word by Ribs Norman
Joan and Oliver by Nicola Amory

Spotlight members can attend for free, so you will need to show proof of membership (Spotlight profile or card) on the door, non members pay £8.

BOOK

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/actor-awareness-intergenerational-night-tickets-26419573656

Cosme & Scott Casting

jay cosme

What draws you to the profession of working in the arts?

I have been a part of the Industry since I was 7 years old, starting out as a child actor on stage. I think for me it’s the fact that no day is the same… Whether that is a new Script coming in, or a last minute casting request from a Director! There really is no way to predict how the week will go and for me that beats any 9-5 office job!

 How did you become a casting director?
 I started out Casting my own short films using mostly friends to fill the parts before (by chance I should add) I attended a networking event and met with a representative of a large company and after much persuading on my part, I landed my first commercial casting job! Thankfully the rise of Social Media has given actors, writers and people like myself a platform to connect with Indie (and established) directors, producers and other professionals. Thanks to Social Media, networking nights, screenings and other such events, I have connected with some really talented story tellers and creatives.
 Lots of actors are members of Spotlight but often don’t feel they get allot from the service in regards to having access to the same auditions as others, as a casting director do you feel their is a heirachy when companies/producers send out information regarding jobs?
I think that as a Casting Director you have to put your faith in the Agents, we have to trust that an Agent is fully aware of their Client’s skills and abilities and that the Agent has put their own reputation on the line by representing said client! Many Actors unfortunately do not understand contracts, buyouts, agreements etc and as a Casting Director you really do not have the time to explain these things. That’s not to say I don’t consider un-represented Actors but ultimately from a professional point of view, an Actor with an Agent tells me that this Agent has faith in the Client and that I am auditioning a professional. Unfortunately many actors without an Agent are at risk of not always being taken seriously which is a shame but something that I do understand.
 When someone sends you their details, what tips would you give?

The advice is to send me a nice headshot (or 2) and a CV, plus details of any shows/performances you are taking part in… I always try my best to attend but if I can’t then I do send along my Assistant.


As a casting director what do you look for when an actor comes into a room?

Personally, my favourite people are the ones who (despite the rubbish train journey or traffic) come in with a smile on their face, cheerful, have learned their lines and are ready! I can’t stand it when an Actor says ‘I haven’t learned the lines as I only got the Script yesterday’. If you was on a soap, you would be learning 10x more dialogue in 24 hours on a daily basis. Not acceptable.

 What advise do you give for actors headshots?
For years the Industry standard has been black&white but it appears that colour ‘American’ style shots are becoming the norm. Personally I like to see colour and black&white! I also like to see a neutral expression with minimal make up, maybe 1 or 2 with a smile.

Do you think in the industry people look at actors who train at drama school and university differently?

I think some do… However for me, I don’t think an Actors ability is necessarily determined by Drama School, some of the best actors had no formal training. Drama school is great to learn and practice but ultimately, if you fit my brief then I am going to call you in… With or without drama school training.

 You are an official supporter of Actor awareness, what do you feel as an casting director that you can do to improve the current playing field in the industry?
 We believe that Actors should be treated fairly like all other freelance workers and should receive fair pay! To often we see casting calls for actors that offer no pay, no expenses and more, unfortunately the more eager actors out there will go for these parts and see it as training or experience… Whilst I appreciate their passion, it’s still wrong.
As Casting Directors we do not cast for no pay jobs or expenses only as we do not agree with the idea of working 10-12 hour days with no pay.

 How do you feel working class actors are represented? What do you think needs to change?

I think it’s a very sad situation… Coming from a working class background myself, I know only to well how expensive Drama school is and the stigma that seems to be attached to working class actors! Some of the best talent lays hidden amongst working class actors. I believe and we are doing everything we can to change this through our own street castings in deprived areas of London and other places.

I urge Agents to open their eyes and look further afield to these sorts of places, your next big star could be sitting there undiscovered!

Free Rayne Artists

free rayne

So firstly there is 4 of you involved in the theatre company, how did it come about?

Well, ever since meeting at High School, Rebecca and I (Matthew) had always joked about starting our own Theatre Company. After going our separate ways, graduating from different Drama Schools and meeting Olivia and Leanne, we felt that now was an appropriate time to form a Company. We believe that there is an undying need in this industry for the platform and showcase of new writers, actors and directors. 

Why are you passionate about new writing?

We are passionate about new writing for various reasons. Firstly, we believe that new writing is the future of our industry. With countless revivals happening at any given time, we feel that there is always a need for new writing from the playwrights of today. We feel that new playwrights SHOULD be given a voice and should be given a platform in which to tell their stories. It is also a great opportunity to Produce new work that no one has preconceptions of… Giving us ‘Free Rayne’ over these pieces. 

What inspires you to make theatre?

First and foremost, we are inspired to make theatre in order to give a voice to playwrights, actors and directors who may not necessarily be given the opportunity otherwise. We are story tellers and wish to communicate with an audience, be that through laughter or tears, we want to take them on a journey. 

Where do you source your writing material?

We source all of our writing material through social media. We created a Website and Twitter Account advertising for material, actors and directors. We were overwhelmed by the quantity AND quality of submissions; which made our jobs extremely difficult. NEVER underestimate the power of social media! 

You have a new writing night coming up at Theatre N16, which is a great Theatre (Actor Awareness love Theatre N16). The theatre is a champion of new writing. Tell us a bit about your first night, any teasers?

It’s a very quirky and intimate Theatre, isn’t it? We are thrilled that the premiere of ‘Spiral’ is taking place here. Without giving too much away, you can expect to be taken on 7 thrilling journeys by some of London’s finest up and coming writers, actors and directors. 

Actor Awareness likes to address different issues that we feel the industry is lacking to address on a wider scale. In regards to working class actors and people from low income backgrounds furthering themselves in the industry, what do you think are stumbling blocks, issues? any thoughts welcome, shoot…..

To start with, getting the funding for Drama School can be a HUGE stumbling block. It’s so expensive. Unless the training and Drama School is part of a University, where student loans are available, it is extremely difficult and unaffordable for many to attend. Therefore, for the unlucky ones who don’t receive bursaries, it can be an impossible situation. Another issue is the extortionate living prices in London, the hub of the performing arts industry. How are Actor’s expected to pay incredibly high rent whilst also trying to invest in their careers by taking regular classes, having head shots taken and seeing as much Theatre, Film and T.V. as possible? There needs to be more financial support for those wanting to train in this industry. 

Tell us whats in store for Free Rayne Artists?

You can expect more short play nights coming very soon. We are entirely committed to new writing and hope to produce our first full length in the not too distant future! Be sure to follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/freerayneartists) and Twitter (@freerayneartist) for upcoming projects, announcements and opportunities. Stay tuned! 

Tickets for ‘Spiral’ can be accessed through the link on our website: www.freerayneartists.com and/or directly from https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/theatren16

Events

Scratch Night

The LGBT scratch was a great success. A review was written up by @Londontheatre1 here http://www.londontheatre1.com/news/133679/actor-awareness-lgbt-scratch-night/

Big thanks to everyone in the LGBT for making it a success to all the writers, directors, actors, tech team and theatre involved. Time to make it happen again, this time at fab fringe venue in Balham, under the theme of health.

HEALTH NIGHT! Jeremy Hunt, George Osborne and David Cameron are casting a huge shadow on our health system, with ludicrous cuts the NHS, the junior doctors walkout and of course the recent disability cuts in the budget. In light of this, the next Actor Awareness scratch night theme is Health Night. The interpretation of the theme is down to you and an interesting subject to explore, all shows must be no more than 15 mins and the submission deadline is 30th of April.

This will take place at Theatre N16 on the 30th of May. All shows selected for the scratch night will then have the opportunity to develop the show into a full length piece and have a 2 night slot in Theatre N16 in August! So if your an actor, director or writer come get involved and send all submissions to Steph at tanheartssteph@gmail.com please read the rules and regulations before submitting here http://www.actorawareness.co.uk/p/scratch-nights.html

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ACTOR AWARENESS LAUNCH PARTY

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AUDITIONS! So Actor Awareness will be holding the official launch party/ fundraiser and we are looking for a variety of acts to perform in the night. Singers, dancers, comedians, magicians, sketch peices, any sort of act to take part in what promises to be an incredible night. Auditions will be held at The Canal Cafe on May 1st, if you would like to audition and be involved email tomstocks0805@gmail.com

We also have a great competition coming up with CCP so keep your eyes peeled.

Writer’s Nights

These will continue monthly. To be added to the mailing list for notification of time and place please email tanheartssteph@gmail.com. An informal sharing of ideas, plays (stage,film, tv , sketch or radio). Hosted by a guest writer each month. £8 for a session which runs 7-9.30pm. April TBC. Please follow @steffieegg12 for updates or join Actor Awareness group on Facebook.

Rosemary Akinola

 

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South Londoner. Will work for food. Favourite colour red. Loves dogs more than cats. Kinda funny.

I first met Rosemary in the halls of Rada, while we were paying our extortionate fee to stand in front of 2 people for about 10 minutes, we bonded over perspiration and sheer love of our craft and also a determination that drama school wouldn’t stop us doing what we love. I’ve been following her and recently saw her face adorning Tricycle theatre. Here Rosemary answer some questions.

When did you first realise you wanted to be an actor ?


Probably when I was around 7 when I did a school play. But I didn’t really take it seriously until I was around 19. Then I was like OK this is the career I want to pursue.

What inspired you ?

That’s such a big question. Urm lots of different things. I guess the main thing that inspires is the love for what I do. I think people, experiences and stories inspire me. There isn’t just one thing.

What excites you and attracts you to theatre?

The story. The performers. The set. I think I’m always interested to see bits of theatre that have a provocative story or if the direction is innovative.

As an actor what qualities do you think are imperative ?


A Peaceful Mind – because this business of acting can be stressful. Keep Calm.

Courage – because it requires you to WORK, FAIL, LEARN and REPEAT.

Entrepreneurship – because being an actor is being self-employed so know your damn business and know what you are selling!

Self Awareness – check your wellbeing: mentally, spiritually, emotionally and financially. Take care of yourself. Your journey and is your own and no one else’s so be kind to you.

You were recently at the Tricycle theatre performing can you tell us more about that? 

Yes so it was an immersive show called Switch. The story is about a post-apocalyptic world where people can no longer thrive on earth so they are choosing to be plugged into a virtual world. I think the development show was somewhat difficult at the beginning because it was a devised as well as immersive with a cast of about 22 people. The process literally was something like: Devise it. Write it. Create it. Play with it. Rehearse. Cut. Edit. Rehearse. Rehearse with audience. Cut. Change. Rehearse.  Create. Rehearse. Rehearse. (Panic – that was me). Perform!

The ending changed every night because it was based on the decision of the audience. It was an incredible experience because the audience where so engaged in what was going on and the feedback was brilliant. We learnt a lot during those audience runs. We were so happy that our audience felt encouraged to participate. It sold out so fast so we’re putting it on again in the summer!


As a black actor what challenges do you face? 


I feel that Black women are constantly in a fight to be seen for roles where the colour of the character is unspecified but don’t get the chance to audition, or go up for those roles because the default race to any unspecified character is always white. I probably don’t get as many opportunities for jobs and auditions as my white counterparts. I think Colorism is another issue I guess. Sometimes they would cast a mixed or lighter skinned black actress who has more European features because they fit the “beauty ideal”. Also having to play stereotypes that are perpetuate a negative image of black women grinds my gears – like I don’t mind playing a bad character but the story has to be there. I don’t want caricatures.

What are your views on drama school training? It is a expensive and competitive avenue, what is your advise and opinion for those who don’t get in? 

I did a year course at Rose Bruford but I haven’t done a three year degree and I was only able to go on a full bursary. I think it is expensive and it is competitive but I wouldn’t rule it out. I think make sure you know why you’re going, what you plan to attain, and understand that it is work like anything else. It’s a good way to learn and grow as a professional but it’s not the only way. There are so many places to train that have courses that are part time, full time and seasonal. There are masterclasses, workshops, seminars, talks, events. I mean there are opportunities to development outside of “drama school” if you look for them. There are teachers at drama schools who work freelance so they are probably teaching in other places as well. I think once you’ve done your research and spoken to a lot of people you will find that there are a ton of resources out there especially in a city like London.

More and more actors are writing and producing their own work, do you think this is the way forward?

I think that’s the way it going – creating your own content. It’s the way to be heard, seen and not bored to death. As an actor you don’t really get that much creative control and a lot of it is waiting around but when you write or produce, well, then you get to tell your own story which is very empowering as a performer and keeps you proactive. Yeah, do it! Make it!


What work would you love to create? Or projects your have at the moment ? 


Possibly a one woman show at some point. I wanted to make a short film about a piece of bacon and an egg on the run from being eaten, but then I realised I was hungry and hadn’t had breakfast!! but wouldn’t that be an awesome debut?!

Actor awareness is about Diversity, with the media and our ethos empathising ‘not enough working class representation’ what are your thoughts?

I think the initiative is great. Acting, like any art, is not about class. It’s for everyone.

Muvahood

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MUVVAHOOD is a one woman, verbatim show. It’s researched, developed, written and performed by Libby Liburd, and directed by Julie Addy.
In the UK there are around 2 million single parents. The vast majority – more than 9 out of 10 single parents – are mothers. Libby is one of them.
Funny, frank and authentic, collated from hours of interviews with single mothers, MUVVAHOOD explores the specific emotional and economic realities of being a woman raising your children alone in London today.
“Affecting…a stark reminder that, as well as being subject to cultural and implicit discrimination, women still face explicit material and institutional discrimination in housing and welfare” Exeunt Magazine (scratch showing 2015)

The first work-in-progress performance of MUVVAHOOD is at Camden People’s Theatre on Sunday 13th March at 6pm, part of the Sprint 16 Festival.
A second performance is at the Tristan Bates Theatre on Monday 11th April at 7pm as part of their First Festival of Solo Performances.

To book tickets for the Camden People’s Theatre show, please follow the link: http://www.cptheatre.co.uk/production/muvvahood
To book tickets for the Tristan Bates show, please follow the link: http://tristanbatestheatre.co.uk/whats-on/first-2016–muvvahood

Adi Aifa

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So Adi what inspired you to act?
I get asked that question a lot, and I think I was inspired by the magic of it all. I have loved performing since my first ballet class aged 5. From then I found a love of acting as a means of escape from reality. In my characters lives I could become anyone I wanted to.

You have a wide range of experience, but you seem to lend towards film, what makes film special to you?
I love to watch film and I love to make film. I think it’s because the stories resonate with an audience deeper on film. I love to tell stories through film, develop my characters…I love everything about film-the marriage of the actors, the story, the beautiful shots and the compelling music.

You made a short film recently, can you tell our readers a bit about it? What is the message? Why you wanted to make it? where the idea came from?
I had the idea a long time ago. My first reason was that I wanted to create something that would show off my skill set as an actress and challenge me, but also, most importantly I wanted strong female leads. The story is based around some issues I have experienced directly or issues that have effected people I know. I knew that I wanted to write a story that made an impact, that made people ask questions and ultimately wanted to know more…

What did you find most challenging about the filming progress?
There are often challenges in anything we pursue. But I’d say the most challenging aspects where keeping to time schedules and working with the unpredictable outdoor weather conditions which effects light and sound. I’d also say getting everyone available to film at the same time was a challenges. Hence why the film is yet to be completed.

Did you fund the film yourself? You got some money rom Kickstarter, was this a good resource?
I did fund the film myself, along with the help of Kickstarter and I would definitely recommend it to independent film makers. The one thing which surprised me, was how many people believed in me and my idea.

Did you have any particular problems that you had to solve while making your short?
When filming there are sometimes small problems such as perhaps continuity issues, or equipment failing. We had a few issues with sound and had to ADR some scenes. Apart from that the film has been an absolute dream.

You won a award for Best Actress NAFCA (African Oscars) For your part in Ortega and His Enemies as Diaspora 2014. This must have felt good!
Yes! It was a very sureal moment. I didn’t expect to win as I up against some experienced and known actresses. But it’s such a wonderful feeling to be recognised as being good at something you’re passionate about and you believe in.

At the Oscars recently there was a distinct lack of diversity in the nominees, how do you feel about this?
I think it’s good that people are talking about it, and I do feel that the oscars has not made a true representation of the diverse talent that’s out there. but I also worry that because of the uproar they may feel pressure to nominate and award black and ethnic minorities just so they don’t get back lash from the public. That would not be helpful at all. I have though lost a lot of respect for the oscars, the debate has brought to light how many flaws there are in its process.
How do you feel the industry needs to address the issue of recognising and creating opportunities for all ethitcies
I like the thought of having colour blind casting. I like that anybody of any ethnicity or gender could play a certain role and not be asked questions. It would be nice to not be stereotyped into a role, it would be nice if mainstream a media outlets considered the talent and work from all ethnicities. We need to be positively and properly represented on the screens and on stage. Can we not see colour for little bit??

John Byrne

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You are a performer, agent, coach and writer, that is a lot of hats, what do you love doing the most?

I think for anybody working in the arts, having to juggle a number of jobs has always been an issue-although, due to both technology the current economy it has now become something people in all walks of life have to do. For me the common factor in all the things I do is using my communication skills to help people to break through the barriers that might be holding their own artistic development back, whether that’s a kid in one of my shows who thinks he can’t draw, or an actor at one of my workshops who thinks they can’t plan their business.

When you were growing up what influenced you towards the arts?
I was always keen on books, comics, stage and screen, but I think the book which really ‘flipped the switch’ for was a book I read when I was about 13 on the making of the original Star Trek TV series. It had interviews with actors, writers, set designers…all very commonplace in books these days but a revelation back then….and I suddenly realised that a) real people made these productions and b) I could be one of those people. I’ve been involved in many and various radio, TV and stage productions since then but I sometimes still feel like that 13 year old who is in wonderment that he is now behind the scenes like the people I used to read about.

What excites you about theatre?
Even with all the advantages of new technology, there are still a lot of practical hoops to jump through to get work on screen, whereas not only is there something very collaborative and ‘instant’ about theatre-even when it has been in rehearsals for weeks!-but it has the magic that it is different every time you do it.

What do you feel is a real and current issue within the industry right now? You have been supporting Actor awareness, firstly thank you and secondly what do you feel about Actor Awareness as a campaign?

For me, inclusivity is the biggest issue in the industry right now… but to be honest I think it has always been an issue, it is just that the internet and new media has given it a voice. As Lucille Ball (who most people remember as a comedian but who was also the first woman to ever head up a major American production company) said ‘Ability without Opportunity doesn’t amount to much.’ I don’t think it is an ‘anti-posh’ or ‘anti-men’ or ‘anti-white’ issue I can think of many ‘posh white male’ actors who are deservedly successful because they are undeniably talented, who work hard and who give back, and fair play to them-the problem is more that the initial opportunities to get going in the industry aren’t as easily available to some as to others, and I think this is the area where we all need to work towards a positive expansion. For me one of the most encouraging developments of the Actors Awareness campaign are initiatives like the scratch nights, so that as well as raising the issue of opportunity, the campaign is actively creating opportunity.

When you coach actors what’s your top tip?
Every actor is different but one of the really important steps for all of us is to work out what in our careers is inside our control and what is outside and making the commitment to work consistently on the stuff we have control over, while forming positive alliances and relationships to help get some leverage on the rest.

What do you feel about drama schools, the inequality (in some peoples opinion) in uni trained and drama school trained students? Drama school fees? Drama school showcases? The fact more and more drama school want to drop out of the accredited system, meaning finance will be available to less?
I always say that while training of any sort never guarantees success in this business, and there have always been successful ‘self taught’ actors, it’s a hard enough business at the best of times that proper training is big advantage-so not having access to training is by implication a disadvantage. Talent is obviously an accident of birth, which actors don’t have control over, as indeed is the social and financial situation they are born into. Hard work is something they do have control over, and in the movies that should be enough in itself to achieve their goals, but in real life , we still need to work towards a more level playing field to enable every actor to have an equal chance of benefitting from their hard work in both the training and career situations.

Thank you John for you time, here John has given us lots of words of wisdom and food for thought.

Access for All- is it just a dream

Churchill

So it’s that time of year where hundreds of people, young and old, are auditioning for drama courses. Auditioning can be a very nerve racking and soul destroying experience. In the working world of acting I can walk into an audition room with composure; I can read well, hold myself and give off an air of professionalism. However, throw me into a room where people scrutinise and decide if you are worth 3 years of their time, I tend to crack a little. Last year I managed to secure myself a place on the Foundation course at Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts and the training is invaluable. Time is flying past so quickly due to the very active, full on nature of the course, proving to be a very worthwhile experience..

The only problem?…MONEY.

First off, the majority of foundation courses aren’t under student finance, so you have to muster up around £8500-£9000 for the course; and that’s excluding the living expenses whilst on the course itself. If you were doing a foundation course in something else at university you would get funded…but this is the arts. By most, arts courses are seen as frivolous and a waste of time. I personally don’t see my future career in the arts as frivolous, but the government seems to disagree. In my opinion, all Education should be free…but of course that’s being idealistic. The current government want to slowly take art from our schools. They don’t seem to realise how important design, art and the performing arts are to our society and socio-economic growth.

As a mature student I am ineligible for most grants and funding. Therefore, by the time I’ve finished my foundation course I’ll have racked up a massive loan, and if I even get onto a BA I’ll be working solid all summer to pay it off before I have to start the process of finding money out of thin air all over again!! How is anyone from an underprivileged background, be it a single parent or low income/working class family, meant to afford to get through or even apply to drama school when audition time arrives, knowing they will be overcome with debt! I am lucky in that I trained as a nurse first, meaning I have some source of income for the duration of my course; even if my income is low, I get by.

Recent data shows that within drama schools today, there are a lot of students from state schools and low income backgrounds. If I think of the students at my school, this is fairly accurate; not all of the pupils are well off. I think the main problem starts at school level arts education. The arts are not valued; they are under appreciated and pushed to the side as a less important part of the curriculum. I come from a state school and my passion for theatre does not derive from their input. I couldn’t sing, so I was rarely chosen to perform in school productions. My passion comes entirely from the need to tells stories and the inspiration I got from theatre; the escapism and humanity I felt from the shows I saw growing up as a young adult in London; they have made me who I am today and shaped my love of the arts. I have worked in schools and seen the huge disparity in the opportunities, and hopefully one day Actor awareness can start reaching out to these schools and help in some way to keep the arts a vital element of school life and child development.

The majority of drama schools in England are in London, and the rising costs of living in London pushes newly graduated actors from lower income backgrounds to find work to pay the rent, meaning they can miss auditions and opportunities due to work commitments. The price of headshots and showreels is forever rising, and casting website subscriptions can be a struggle to maintain. A working actor has a lot of work to do and a lot to pay for before they can even secure a job, network in the right circles or even get an agent; that’s why people from lower income backgrounds have a lesser chance of making it in the acting world, as these factors are all easier if you are from a more affluent background. Now this is reality, and I’m not saying if you have more money that’s ‘unfair’ on the rest of us. Talent hopefully prevails in this industry, but there needs to be a conscious effort from people in the industry to source a diverse range of actors; from casting directors, agents, producers etc. The people at the top need to make changes, and the government needs to notice that the arts are an intrinsic part of society.

Tanya Perry a teacher in London was a Graphic designer for years before turning to secondary education. Here is what she says about the government and it’s attack on the arts.

‘Well I think that it’s already on its way to being demolished. I don’t think they can ever truly get rid of it, hopefully. I think by demolishing it will lead to a shortage in the jobs that makes London the creative hub it is. Without arts there is very little culture. Without design and art our towns would be hollow, no cinemas, no theatre, no exhibitions, no galleries, little museums; our homes and our countries would be economically depressed. In design there are people thinking up new products, new ways to use technology, new ways to implement technology in products. There’s essentially nothing without art and design that has substance or character and we can’t compete with countries on a global scale, with whom treat the arts as integral to forward thinking and a intelligent society’

There needs to be more funding available to people of all ages in the arts industry, to help pay the raising costs of accommodation and the extra costs of drama school, such as books and materials.

I believe that drama school audition fees need to be regulated. The accredited schools should have a system where people from lower income families should be able to receive a discount or a free audition place. Each Drama school should be allocated free audition slots for lower income students. I’m not saying abolish fees, but why not make them reasonable. Most aspiring actors will audition for around 6 schools, and at £50 an audition, it isn’t cheap.

Some schools even make applicants who are applying for the BA and the MA pay for 2 separate auditions, even thought it only takes one audition; they decide which course you are appropriate for and recall you based on that.

One good thing that the majority of schools do is have their auditions held in different places across the country, meaning if you don’t live in London you don’t have to rule out applying there because you can’t travel all that way. However, it is expensive getting yourself all over the country to the auditions, and some schools, such as RADA, require you to travel for every stage…that could be up to 4 journeys!

If the government keeps making cuts and slashing away at the curriculum and funding, how long will it be till what we see in our theatres, in our films and on TV is not a good representation at all of the society we live in.