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The Alumni Newsletter ISSUE 23 | JULY 2014

Share Your Views in our Newsletter Questionnaire News of Award Winning Alumni Spotlight on MA Performance Practices and Research Alumni Create Community Outreach Projects Central Hosts Odin Teatret News from Alumni Around the World


Acknowledgements With thanks to all featured alumni and photographers, and to the following Central staff for their contributions towards this Newsletter: Anthony Bell, Ayse Tashkiran, Ben Gallacher, Caroline Townsend, Catherine Alexander, Catherine McNamara, Claudette Williams, Daniel Hetherington, Experience Bryon, Gregg Fisher, Jane Boston, Martin Wylde, Megan Hunter, Nick Moran, Nick Moseley, Nick Wood, Paul Barker, Peter McAllister, Peter Maccoy, Robin Nelson, Sally Mackey, Sarah James, Selina Busby, Stephen Farrier, Verna Rhodes, and Wendy Gadian.

Contents 04 School-Wide News 07  Programme Spotlight: MA Performance

Practices and Research 08 Alumni Collaborations 10

Alumni Awards and Nominations


Alumni Stage News


Alumni in the Community

Course Key


Supporting Central

Throughout the Alumni Newsletter course names have been abbreviated as follows, for space saving purposes: A = Acting, AC SD = Advanced Certificate in Speech and Drama, AD SD = Advanced Diploma, Stage Design, AD VS = Advanced Certificate in Voice Studies, AMT = Acting Musical Theatre, ATP = Advanced Theatre Practice, B Ed. DSL = B Ed. Hons. Speech and Drama, B Ed. SD = B Ed. Stage Design, BA A = BA Acting, BA DE = BA (Hons) Drama and Education, BA DATE = BA (Hons) Drama, Applied Theatre and Education, BA TP = BA (Hons) Theatre Practice, BA TS = BA (Hons) Theatre Studies, BTEC FAD = Diploma in Foundation Art and Design, DE = Drama Education, Dip AMT= Diploma Acting Musical Theatre, Dip. DA = Teaching Course, Dip. ST = Diploma Speech Therapy, DMT = Postgraduate Diploma Drama and Movement Therapy, MA A = MA Acting, MA AS = MA Acting for Screen, MA AMT = MA Acting Musical Theatre, MA AT = MA Applied Theatre, MA ATP = MA Advanced Theatre Practice, MA CA = MA Classical Acting, MA CP = MA Creative Producing, MA DMT = MA Drama and Movement Therapy (Sesame), MA MS = MA Movement Studies, MA PS = MA Performance Studies, MA V = MA Voice, MA VS = MA Voice Studies, MA WSBM = MA Writing for Stage and Broadcast Media, PGCE D = PGCE Drama, PGCE M = PGCE Media, PGCL = PG Certificate in Learning, PGCLTHE = Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, PGDip ATP = Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced Theatre Practice, PGDip DMT = Postgraduate Diploma Drama and Music Therapy, PGDVS = Postgraduate Diploma Voice Studies, S = Stage, SLT = Speech Language Therapy, SM = Stage Management, ST = Speech Therapy, T = Teaching, Tech = Technical, W = Wardrobe.


Alumni Abroad

Edited by: Louise Jones. Designed by: Nimbus. Printed by: Disc to Print. Photographs: All credits (where provided) have been included in the Newsletter.

20 Alumni Screen News 22 Central Connects News 24 Alumni in the Building 26 Event Round-Up 28 Research News 29

Alumni Publications

30 Forthcoming Events


Alumni Newsletter Questionnaire


Keep in Touch

Front cover image: BA Acting students in Love and Information (photo by Patrick Baldwin) Inside cover image: BA Acting: Musical Theatre students in Grease (photo by Patrick Baldwin)


Introduction We’re delighted to bring you the summer 2014 edition of Central’s Alumni Newsletter, our bi-annual magazine for alumni and friends of the School. Over the past six months, Central graduates have continued to make their mark on the creative industries, in both the UK and around the world. Throughout the Newsletter you can see just some of this work, but there is much more happening beyond what we can include in this publication. To give a snapshot, alumni are making waves on stage and screen (pages 12-13 and 20-21), impacting on communities (pages 14-15), as well as creating projects all across the globe (pages 18-19) and winning accolades for their work (pages 10-11). This Newsletter is also a chance to learn about latest news from the School (pages 4-6) and forthcoming events (page 30), how you can join the support for Central (pages 16-17) and how to stay in touch and be a part of our thriving alumni community (pages 31-32). Recent announcements include the news that, going forward, any graduate of one of Central’s full time undergraduate courses is now able to enjoy a 10% discount on tuition fees when they enrol on one of the School’s MA/MFA programmes. For more information about the broad spectrum of postgraduate courses on offer at Central, visit

Finally, we would like to take this opportunity to ask all Central’s alumni to provide their feedback via our Alumni Newsletter Questionnaire, so that we can ensure that the Newsletter continues to suit the needs of the alumni. You can complete this short questionnaire online at newslettersurvey or alternately, please return the paper version enclosed with the Alumni Newsletter mailing in the envelope provided. All feedback from alumni is greatly appreciated and will be enormously useful in helping us to develop the Newsletter and create a publication that you can be proud of. We thank all alumni in advance for their valued feedback and for their ongoing support as Central graduates. Louise Jones, Zoe Haddock and Meg Ryan Alumni Relations Office


School-wide news For the latest School-wide news and details of upcoming events, visit


Geoffrey Colman with Odin’s Director, Eugenio Barba (photo by Patrick Baldwin)

To celebrate International Women’s Day on 8 March, a group of MA Advanced Theatre Practice students took over the School to present the International Women’s Day Festival.

ODIN TEATRET RESIDENCY In April, Central was delighted to host the internationally acclaimed theatre company Odin Teatret for an exclusive four day residency to mark their 50th anniversary and their first ever tour to London. The residency coincided with a series of performances of their production The Chronic Life at the Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadler’s Wells. Formed in Oslo, Norway in 1964, Odin have created over 75 productions to date, and have performed in 63 countries in a variety of different social contexts. Their work is based on cultural diversity, incorporating various languages and performance styles alongside music and dance from numerous local cultures. As a laboratory, Odin’s work is characterised by scholarly research,

cross-disciplinary endeavours and a spirit of international collaboration. Today, the company is based in Holstebro and its members hail from over a dozen countries across three continents. As a part of the residency at Central, Odin led a number of intimate workshops, performed work demonstrations and screened film footage from their extensive collection. The workshops were particularly popular, with allocated spaces selling out completely within four minutes! Another highlight of the residency was an ‘In Conversation’ between Central’s Head of Acting, Geoffrey Colman, and Odin’s Director, Eugenio Barba, which took place in the Embassy Theatre on 23 April.

PLAYWRIGHTS’ PROGRESS PROJECT This year, Central collaborated with the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain (Drama) and the Leicester Square Theatre to create Playwrights’ Progress – a new theatre writing project for emerging playwrights. Initiated by Martin Wylde, Course Leader of MA Acting, and Professor Robin Nelson, Director of Research, the competition saw eight plays selected from a long-list of over 200 submissions, before four being workshopped with a cast and directors. The project culminated with two of the plays, Westernisation by Imran Yusef and The Ostrich by Kate Davidson, being showcased at Leicester Square Theatre on 9 May. Several Central alumni were involved in the project in their capacity as actors or

directors: Danielle Arden (MA A 12), John Atterbury (S 61), Norma Butikofer (MA A 13), Callum Cameron (MA A 13), Samuel Caseley (MA CA 13), Ivy Corbin (MA A 11), Matthew Darcy (MA CA 12), Chris HuntlyTurner (MA A 13), Martins Inghambe (BA A 13), Ruth McMeel (MA CA 12), Rebecca Meyer (BA A 10), Christopher Neels (MA A 13), Jenny Ogilvie (MA MS 11), Natalie Perera (MA A 11), Mick Quinlan (MA A 11), Valmike Rampersad (MA AS 07), Eleanor Rose (MA AC 13), Janette Smith (B Ed. SD 93), Andrew Strafford-Baker (MA CA 13), Ruby Thompson (MA CA 13), Mike Tibbetts (MA A 11), Patrick Toomey (MA ATC 07) and Timothy Trimingham Lee (MA ATP 08).

For more alumni news, visit

Photo by Natasha Richards

The Festival was a collaborative student effort from across Central’s courses, with participants hailing from all corners of the globe to create a truly international experience examining what it means to be a woman in the Arts in 2014. This year’s theme of ‘Inspiring Change’ was, for Central’s purposes, focused on the achievements of women in the theatre, as well as on the wider work of theatre with women and girls. A series of talks, performances and workshops were held with local residents, community arts practitioners and professional performers. A panel discussion also took place, with representatives from Clean Break, Generation Arts and Tender, as well as from Central’s own academic community.


Design and Crafts Exhibition (photo by Patrick Baldwin)

DESIGN AND CRAFTS EXHIBITION A unique feature of the BA Theatre Practice course is that students studying specialist disciplines are able to focus on their area of study, but in the dynamic context of collaborative work with all the other theatremaking disciplines. The annual Design and Crafts Exhibition, which this year took place from 8-9 May around Central, celebrated the technically skilled and creatively inventive work of students on the Design for Stage, Costume Construction, Prop Making, Scenic Art, Scenic Construction, Lighting Design and Theatre Sound courses. Julia Fitzpatrick (BA TP 08), who coordinated the exhibition, said, “This is a culmination of three years of work by the design and crafts students. It’s great to see how they’ve developed as practitioners, and we’re really pleased with how well attended this year’s exhibition was! So many students are leaving with jobs already lined up.”


Photo by Patrick Baldwin

will provide a unique occasion at which to showcase UK conservatoire voice research and pedagogy to a wider public. It will also provide an opportunity to show how thought and practice about the voice in a theatre training context can contribute to a wider contemporary debate about gendered access to the platforms of public life.

The ICV is proud to co-host the American Voice and Speech Trainers Association (VASTA) annual conference at Central, which will take place from 5-9 August. The theme of the conference is Voicing the Future: Reinventing Traditions and many of Central’s Voice Studies alumni, along with voice professionals from across the US, will be presenting their research related to this topic in papers, workshop collaborations, and a variety of discussion forums. This is the first time this sister organisation to the ICV has held its conference at Central, and for

many in VASTA it will be viewed, in part, as a return to one of the great homes of voice and speech in the western academies. The conference will serve as a stimulating springboard into the academic year 2014-15, during which there will be another major programme of events. The second is the participation by the ICV and the MA/MFA Voice Studies programmes in the Being Human Festival, in conjunction with the University of London, from 19-20 November. Continuing in the VASTA conference vein, it

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

These two significant public events will feed into the ICV’s wider research agenda, consisting of a range of investigations into the ways embodied vocal strategies can assist individual speakers to engage with enhanced communication, such that they also inform their individual distinctiveness, including accent and class. We have both industry and academic interest in this topic from a range of critical and experiential perspectives, and the outcomes will inform the direction of research in Voice at Central over the next three years. Jane Boston Head of the International Centre for Voice, Principal Lecturer and Course Leader, MA/MFA Voice Studies For further details about ICV events please contact

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


BLACK HISTORY MONTH CELEBRATION In autumn 2013, Central’s Black and Asian Alumni Network (BAAN) held two workshops to celebrate Black History Month.

Home Fires as part of Fuse Medway Festival (courtesy of Robyn Goldsmith)

FLYING THE FLAG FOR CENTRAL AT FUSE MEDWAY FESTIVAL For the fifth year running, first year students on Central’s BA Drama, Applied Theatre and Education (BA DATE) course were commissioned by Fuse Medway Festival to create an open-air family theatre show for this exciting annual arts festival in north Kent. Home Fires was the creation of 10 first year students, working alongside professional director Jamie Harper and designer Florence McHugh, and told tales of World War One and the impact it had on the Medway area and women’s independence. Playing to audiences in local parks, town centres and heritage sites, in communities where cultural opportunities are few and interest in the Arts is limited, the show gave many people their first experience of theatre and encouraged them to seek out further events on offer during the festival. This year, four second year BA DATE students also delivered an outreach programme to develop audiences for the production and enrich the creative experience for local people. These included activities at a local museum, primary school workshops and on-street interventions promoting Home Fires and the wider Fuse programme.

The relationship between Fuse and the BA DATE course was established by former Fuse Artistic Director Kate Hazel (BA DE 00) and the annual partnership project is now supported by her colleague Robyn Goldsmith (BA DE 00), who continues to work for Medway Council Arts Development Team as Education and Outreach Officer. As alumni, Robyn and Kate’s personal experience of the course has enabled them to ensure that the experience of the BA DATE students involved in the commission each year is a valuable one. Fuse is an annual free outdoor arts festival, which happens each June across the towns of Gillingham, Chatham and Rochester, preceded by exciting pre-festival ‘Lighting the Fuse’ outreach events. Funded by Medway Council and Arts Council England, the festival is delivered by current Artistic Director Megan Donnolley of Medway Council Arts Development Team. Megan said, “The relationship between Fuse and the BA DATE course has been long and fruitful – it is an honour to work with a school of this calibre. Medway is only 35 minutes from St Pancras, so easily accessible for London based alumni seeking cutting edge international acts and new work. And Fuse is a commissioning festival, so any alumni interested in developing new work should visit our website or phone app, or follow us on Twitter or Facebook to find out how you might get involved in Fuse 2015.” For more information on Fuse visit

For more alumni news, visit

The first was a spoken word workshop with Word Temple director Amani Naphtali on 28 October. As a dramatist, writer, director and filmmaker, Amani has worked with some of the most recognisable and ground-breaking theatre companies across the UK. During the session, Amani linked urban-based black street styles and their African antecedents, alongside physical theatre, jazz, contemporary dance, contact improvisation and movement. Speaking after the workshop, current student Sujaya Dasgupta (BA A 15) said, “Amani really reminded me how words are in the body, and that body, mind and voice are one. He created a positive and lively atmosphere in which we felt safe and encouraged to play and experiment.” The second workshop, which took place on 7 November, welcomed Madani Younis, formerly Director of Red Ladder theatre company’s Asian Theatre School and Freedom Studios, and now Artistic Director of the Bush Theatre. Madani gave the group an insight into ethnicity within theatre and the future landscape for black and Asian artists and playwrights. Student Reice Weathers (BA A 15) said, “I loved his humbleness and his honesty. It was amazing hearing his first hand experiences, and he put things into perspective. His views on making a change are simple: don’t be an outside spectator, be in it!” The Black and Asian Alumni Network serves to bring current students and alumni together in a community of shared experiences. To join the group, or for further information, contact Claudette Williams at


PROGRAMME SPOTLIGHT: MA PERFORMANCE PRACTICES AND RESEARCH Dr Experience Bryon, Senior Lecturer and Course Leader of MA Performance Practices and Research, tells us why Central is fast becoming the leading institution for Practice as Research.

The MA in Performance Practices and Research (MA PPR) has played an important part in the development of Central’s position as a place for Practice as Research. MA PPR is the only course in the school, other than the PhD Programme, that caters to the ‘auteur’; the individual practitioner or researcher working across disciplinary boundaries. Students arrive with either an established practice and/or a background in performance theory. They come to take their work to the edges of their specialisms by exploring untouched ground and establishing new ways of thinking about and presenting performance, while constantly pushing the boundaries of their disciplines. The course recruits approximately 10 students per year and provides a laboratory for study and experimentation in the area of contemporary performance, mobilising both practical and conceptual work. Students interrogate, test and apply the most recent thinking and practices within their particular fields, and are encouraged to experiment and innovate by developing their own work; work that is ultimately presented as part of the Brink Festival. Throughout the year, emphasis is placed on a reciprocal relationship between theory and practice, where one always feeds into and enlivens the other. As the course values the particular skills and personal proposals that individual students bring to it, the interests that they express shape the timetable and content of course units. The MA PPR students start by learning the key vocabularies and skill sets within the Critical Contexts and Performing Practices units, before moving into the individual laboratory work of the Developing your Disciplines unit, while concurrently joining with the entire MA community in the Performing Research unit. They then go on to produce the Brink Festival as part

Dr Experience Bryon

2014 Brink Festival (photo by Patrick Baldwin)

of the Laboratory of Performance Practices unit, while taking advantage of one of the options units which is offered within the MA Framework. The last term is undertaken as Sustained Independent Practice, in which they synthesise all their learning and development through a multi-modal output within the dissertation. MA PPR was first launched in 2004, and was designed initially to play a linking role within the MA portfolio. Central had then only recently become part of the University of London, and MA PPR helped to bridge the gap between our established reputation as a conservatoire, with the then relatively newly acquired university status. Since then, MA PPR has created a family of alumni who have gone on to become valuable members of our industry in positions such as: choreographers, composers, creative producers, dramaturgs, directors, artistic directors, performers and visual artists. Employment destinations have included: assistant to Nicholas Hytner at the National Theatre; member of the producing team for War Horse; General Manager for the National Youth Theatre; Producer for Franko B; assistant and dramaturg for David Lan at the Young Vic; Venue Manager at the Rag Factory East; Producer for Tiger Aspects; Production Manager at University of Surrey; and Lecturer in Choreography at Birkbeck University. Many have also gone on to create companies or performance work as a direct extension of the Brink Festival.

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Recent companies have included: Kinitras, a dance company that works from Greece; and Portmanteau, whose writer, a graduate, was shortlisted this year for UK Young Poet Laureate. In the last four years, six students have gone on to enrol on PhD courses, two with full institutional scholarships, and another with a Fulbright Award. In the last two years alone, work started within the course has gone on to be presented at Camden People’s Theatre, Steakhouse Live, Beacons Festival, Brighton Fringe, Rich Mix, The Book Trust, and the Roundhouse.

The 2014 Brink Festival, produced by the MA PPR students, took place between 27 June and 2 July. It showcased seven emerging performance makers from diverse cultural and artistic backgrounds, and offered contemporary audiences new possibilities of experiencing performance from sharply different angles. From Santiago to Šiauliai, London to Lincoln, Beijing to Blyth, this year’s Festival was a hot pot of forward thinking research-based performance practice. Musicality of language, transparency of gender, poetics of human fragility, trace and individual as commodity were just some of the ideas explored. See brinkfestival for further details

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni Collaborations The cultural industries are built on creative collaboration between arts practitioners, and many of our alumni find themselves working together on a variety of projects from time to time.





This year, writer Duncan MacMillan (MA ATP 02) collaborated with director Katie Mitchell to create The Forbidden Zone – a project which was commissioned by the Salzburg Festival to mark the centenary of the outbreak of World War One. Exploring the themes of science, women and war, The Forbidden Zone used video cameras and film sets, including a moving subway train, to create a unique cinematic production.

Ben Miles (BA DE 99) and Harriet Hardie (BA DE 00) formed Full House Theatre in 2001. Recently they have been touring and performing alongside Charlotte Chinn (MA AMT 06) with Big Red Bath – a ‘bubbly, barmy, bath time adventure’ for children aged two and above. Made in association with Half Moon Theatre and adapted from the children’s book by Julia Jarman, the show visited theatres up and down the country from September 2013 until April 2014, and will play at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this summer. Set and costumes were designed by Keith Orton (Adv. Dip SD 92), former Pathway Leader for Theatre Crafts at Central, and technical support for the tour came from Richard Delight (PGCLTHE 03), once Head of Production Services.

Several other alumni were involved in the project, which had its world premiere at the Salzburg Festival on 30 July: Finn Ross (BA TP 03) as Video Designer; Lizzie Clachan (MA ATP 98) as Set Designer; Melanie Wilson (MA ATP 01) as Sound Designer; Jack Knowles (BA TP 08) as Lighting Designer; with Matthew Alexander (BA A 11) and Suzy Grimsdick (BA A 13) performing as part of the cast. On 2 August the show will be streamed live from the Salzburg Festival at the Barbican in London.

Full House also have another show at the Edinburgh Festival this year. The Snow Dog – ‘a magical enchanting modern fairy tale for children and their families’ – was originally created by the same team, with additional support from Lucy Carter (Adv. Dip LD 93) and scripted by Sarah Nelson (BA DE 96). Both The Snow Dog and Big Red Bath will be shown in rep at The Pleasance 2.

For more alumni news, visit

FEMALE ARTS AND WOMEN OF THE WORLD FESTIVAL Wendy Thomson (MA WSBM 12) is working with several Central graduates and students on Female Arts, a feminist arts review magazine, which she started at Central with student innovation funding in May 2011. A number of its writers were nominated for the 2014 Orwell prize in Journalism: Sophie Porter (MA WSBM 13), Jade Allen (MA ATP 14), Madelaine Smith (MA AT 11), Pamela Jikiemi (MA ATC 12), along with Wendy herself. On 5 March, Female Arts were selected to co-host a party at the Women of the World Festival (WOW) at the Southbank Centre, which celebrates the work of charities and organisations supporting women in the UK and internationally. The party consisted of an evening of performances, including one of Wendy’s short play Mature Student, which was directed by Alex Newall (MA WSBM 12) and featured Teri Levett (MA WSBM 13) in the cast. For further details see





Becky Mackeonis, née Lyon (MA DMT 02), Mary Smail and Emma Westcott (both MA DMT 90) have combined forces to deliver an innovative experiential course called Psyche and Soma, using their training in the Sesame Approach.

Stuart Barter, Clare Dunn and Terry O’Donovan (all MA ATP 04) created theatre company TOOT with producer Faith Dodkins to make an Ovalhouse commission, Ten Out of Ten. Following the show’s success they have been supported by Escalator, Cambridge Junction, Ovalhouse and Shoreditch Town Hall, where they premiered their new interactive piece, Be Here Now, this June.

My Mate Dave, a new company formed by Jake Miller (MA WSBM 13) and Daniel Huntley Solon (MFA WSBM 14) produced the European premiere of Sex, With Benefits at the Sweet Venues Grassmarket, as part of the 2014 Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Written and directed by Daniel Huntley Solon and starring Patrick Kelly (MA A 13) the play concerns two young gay men called Grey and Duncan who have been talking online for three years. As they finally meet in person and start testing the boundaries of their relationship, they discover exactly how little they know each other. Hormones and emotions run high as the pair discover how different their priorities are.

The course is for any registered practitioners who want to explore the place of the inner world of Soul in their work. Students come from a wide range of backgrounds: psychotherapy, counselling, music therapy, drama teachers, special needs teachers, storytellers, psychology, care work, ministry and osteopathy. Psyche and Soma is now recruiting for its 4th cohort of students, to begin the course in September 2014. For further details see or contact


A comic, yet tender look at how music seeps into and influences our lives, Be Here Now combined pumping nineties beats, suspect dance routines and angsty shoegazing to celebrate the power of pop, and examine how that song will forever ignite heady feelings of love lost and won. The show ran from 17- 28 June and will go on a national tour in the autumn.


The show came to the UK after sell-out runs across the US, playing at the Danger Danger Gallery in Philadelphia, the Blue Theatre in Austin, and the Dallas Hub Theater. For more information see



CSSD Alumni News – Official Site


The Forbidden Zone (photo courtesy of Salzburger Festspiele & Stephen Cummiskey)


Full House Theatre’s Production of The Snow Dog (© ShaunArmstrong,


Wendy Thomson (left) with Amy ClareTasker and Susan Crothers at the Women of the World Festival (photo courtesy of Wendy Thomson)


Graduates of the Psyche and Soma course (photo courtesy of Becky Mackeonis)


Terry O’Donovan and Clare Dunn in Be Here Now (photo by Ludovic des Cognets)


Sex, With Benefits (photo by Amorlak Sira)

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni Awards and nominations We are proud that Central graduates continue to receive recognition for their work in the industry. If you have recently been nominated or won an award, please contact the Alumni Office.





Yoon Bae


Chimerica, with lighting design by Finn Ross and sound design by Carolyn Downing (photo by Johan Persson)


Philip Todd with his FilmG Award (photo by Nathan Todd)

BAFTA TELEVISION AWARDS Three alumni were recognised in the nominations for the 2014 Awards: Graham Norton (S 89), Best Entertainment Performance and Comedy Entertainment Programme for The Graham Norton Show; Steve Delaney (S 82), Best Situation Comedy for Count Arthur Strong; and Jerome Flynn (S 84), Best Supporting Actor for Ripper Street.


Judi Dench in Philomena (© 2013 Philomena Lee Ltd, Pathé Productions Ltd, BFI and BBC, all rights reserved) 5

Nicola Rae collects the Outstanding Teacher Award (photo by Ms Zoe Ho)

CRITICS AWARD FOR THEATRE IN SCOTLAND Elicia Daly (MA CA 07) was nominated for Best Female Performance at the 2014 Critics’ Awards for Theatre in Scotland, for her role as Phyllis King in The Beautiful Cosmos of Ivor Cutler. Orla O’Loughlin (MA ATP 00) was nominated for Best Director, for her production of Ciara.



Yoon Bae (Adv. Dip CT 93) won the 2013 San Francisco Bay Area Critics Circle Award in Scenic Design for Disconnect by Anupama Chandrasekhar at the San Jose Repertory Theatre.

Martin Freeman (S 95) received two nominations at this year’s Critics’ Choice Television Awards: firstly for Best Actor in a Movie or Miniseries for the role of Lester Nygaard in Fargo, and secondly for Best Supporting Actor in a Movie or Miniseries for the role of Dr. John Watson in Sherlock: His Last Vow.

BBC AUDIO DRAMA AWARDS Cat Jones (MA WSBM 08), was nominated for a 2014 BBC Audio Drama Award in the category of Best Radio Drama Script, for her radio play Hangdog. The play explored the culture of blame within the public sector and was first broadcast on 11 July 2013.

FILMG AWARD Philip Todd (MA AS 12) won the Best Music Video award at FilmG, Scotland’s national Gaelic short film competition, for his atmospheric take on ‘Còmhla Riut-sa (With You)’, performed by the Gaitway Brothers. The music video was conceived, directed and edited by Philip.

For more alumni news, visit

PHILOMENA Judi Dench (S 57) received numerous accolades for her role in Philomena. She won the Best British Actress award at the London Critics’ Circle Film Awards and also International Actress at the 2014 Irish Film and Television Awards. She was also nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Film Role at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, for Leading Actress at the BAFTA Film Awards, and for Actress in a Leading Role at the Academy Awards.

INTERNATIONAL AWARDS Petar Miloshevski (MA ATP 10) was presented with the All-Rounder of an Artist Award by the young jury of the 2014 International Theatre Festival in Mogilev, Belarus, as well as an Award for Artistic Quest for New Forms in Solo Theatre at the 2014 International Chamber Theatre Festival in Hanover, Germany, both for his solo-show The Beautiful.


RESPECT ‘LOVED BY YOU’ AWARDS / NATIONAL DIVERSITY AWARDS Kathy Caton (BA DE 96) was nominated in the National Diversity Awards in the Positive Role Model category, and was named in the Independent on Sunday’s Pink List 2013 for her work on BBC Radio 4. Her weekly radio show Out In Brighton on Radio Reverb 97.2fm is one of the country’s leading LGBTQ programmes, winning the Co-Op’s Respect ‘Loved By You’ Award for Radio.



STILES & DREWE BEST NEW SONG PRIZE Tamar Broadbent (MA MT 12) won the 2014 Stiles & Drewe Best New Song Prize, awarded by the Stephen Sondheim Society as part of the Student Performer of the Year awards, for her two songs ‘Library Boy’ and ‘The Procrastination Song’.





Matt Bunday Events (courtesy of Tony Bunday and MBE Ltd.)


Papatango’s production of Foxfinder (photo by Garry Lake)


Petar Miloshevski (photo by Josh Brandao)



Martin Freeman (S 95) was nominated for Best Actor for The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug at the 2014 Jameson Empire Awards. James Nesbitt (S 88) hosted the awards ceremony, which took place on 30 March.

Cush Jumbo (BA A 06) won Best Actress for her role in A Doll’s House at the Royal Exchange, Manchester. Emma Laxton (BA TS 98) received a nomination in the category of Best Sound Design, for her work on The Accrington Pals, also at the Royal Exchange.

LAURENCE OLIVIER AWARDS Congratulations to Finn Ross (BA TP 03) and Carolyn Downing (BA TP 02), who scooped Best Lighting Design and Best Sound Design, both for Chimerica at the Almeida and Harold Pinter Theatres. Sonia Friedman (SM 85) made Olivier Awards history by winning the most awards for any producer, for The Book of Mormon, Chimerica, Ghosts and Merrily We Roll Along. The following alumni also received nominations at the awards: Judi Dench (S 57) Best Actress for Peter and Alice; Cecilia Noble (S 88), Best Supporting Actress for The Amen Corner; Duncan Macmillan (MA ATP 02), Best New Play for 1984; Nick Payne (MA WSBM 07), Best New Comedy for The Same Deep Water As Me; Peter Darling (S 88), Best Theatre Choreographer for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory; and Cush Jumbo (BA A 06), Outstanding Achievement in Affiliate Theatre for Josephine and I.

NATIONAL THEATRE FOUNDATION PLAYWRIGHT AWARD Chris Foxon (MA CP 12) is the Producer of Papatango Theatre Company. They produced the world premiere of Foxfinder by Dawn King, which won the inaugural National Theatre Foundation Playwright Award. In addition, Papatango were one of only 20 organisations to receive a BBC Theatre Fellowship for 2014.

OUTSTANDING TEACHER AWARD Nicola Rae (BA DATE 06) was awarded an Outstanding Teacher Award from the Young Friends of the Hong Kong Arts Festival. The award acknowledges teachers who are devoted to providing arts experiences to young people and educating students in all aspects of performing arts.

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Matt Bunday (BA TP 07) was shortlisted for the South Coast Business Awards’ Entrepreneur of the Year for his business Matt Bunday Events Ltd. The company was founded three years ago, following his production management of the 2011 Southampton Passion, and has since built up a strong reputation working with local community groups, charities, and community organisations, as well as employing many Central students and graduates. See

TONY AWARDS Several alumni were recognised for their achievements on Broadway this year: Paul Chahidi (S 94) was nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play, for his portrayal of Maria in Twelfth Night; Michael Grandage (S 84) was nominated for Best Direction of a Play for The Cripple of Inishmaan; and Les Misérables, produced by Cameron Mackintosh (SM 65) was nominated for Best Revival of a Musical.

WHATSONSTAGE AWARDS Peter Darling (S 88) won the award for Best Choreographer at the 2014 WhatsOnStage Awards for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. Michael Grandage (S 84) was named Best Director for the Michael Grandage Season at the Noël Coward Theatre.

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni Stage NEWS



Central alumni can be seen treading the boards and working backstage in theatres across the UK.




Daniel Fraser (BA A 10) and Mathew Foster (BA A 12) appeared in the RSC’s London transfer of sell-out shows Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies. Stephen Kemble (MA VS 06) was the show’s Vocal Coach. Both productions were directed by Jeremy Herrin and will run in rep until 6 September.

Diane Alison-Mitchell (MA MS 08) was Movement Director on We Are Proud to Present a Presentation of the Herero of Namibia, Formerly Southwest Africa, From the German Sudwestafrika, Between the Years 1884-1915 at the Bush Theatre. Azusa Ono (BA TP 07) was the Lighting Designer and Donato Wharton (BA TP 09) was the show’s Sound Designer. Written by award-winning US playwright Jackie Sibblies Drury and directed by Gbolahan Obisesan, the play ran from 28 February until 12 April.

ALMEIDA Oliver Chris (BA A 00) appeared in King Charles III at the Almeida Theatre from 3 April until 31 May. Anna Morrissey (MA MS 05) was the show’s Movement Director. Written by Mike Bartlett and directed by Rupert Goold, King Charles III transfers to the Wyndham’s Theatre in September, where Nick Bromley (SM 64) will be the Company Manager.

Balfron Tower, EAST LONDON 1 Stephen Pucci in Rigoletto (photo by Robert Workman) 2 Oliver Chris with Tim Pigott-Smith in King Charles III (photo by Johan Persson) 3 John Macneill in Jerusalem (photo courtesy of Matt Austin Images) 4 Lillie Flynn in Sunny Afternoon (photo by Dominic Clemence) 5 Elliot Barnes-Worrell in Henry IV, Part II (photo by Kwame Lestrade © RSC) 6 Gillian Bevan in The Last Days of Troy (photo by Jonathan Keenan) 7 Josie Brightwell (front row, fourth from left) and Rhidian Marc (middle row, far right) with Cameron Mackintosh and the cast of Les Misérables (courtesy of the Les Misérables company) 8 Gavin James, Luisa Guerreiro and Adebayo Bolaji in Momo (photo by Robert Day, courtesy of Filament Theatre) 9 Luke Norris as Rodolpho in A View from the Bridge (photo by Jan Versweyveld).

Dominique Bull (BA A 08) worked as Assistant Director on RIFT’s immersive production of Macbeth. The show took place overnight in a 27-storey tower block in East London, using Shakespeare’s text, new writing and devised sections, and ran from 20 June until 16 August. Dominique also appeared as a Witch and Lady Macduff.

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ENGLISH NATIONAL OPERA Stephen Pucci (MA CA 09) performed in two productions at the ENO this spring. Rigoletto was staged by Olivier Award-winning director Christopher Alden, whilst Powder her Face was directed by Joe Hill-Gibbins.

EXETER NORTHCOTT THEATRE John Macneill (S 86) appeared as Johnny ‘Rooster’ Byron in Jez Butterworth’s multi award-winning play Jerusalem. Directed by Anthony Richards, the production was a Common Players project in association with Exeter Northcott Theatre. The play ran at Rougemont Gardens, Exeter from 27-31 May, then toured the West Country until 28 June.











fEast Theatre has gained critical acclaim for touring around Norfolk, with plays on Norfolk themes, using actors with authentic accents. Robin McLoughlin (MA CA 05) starred as Jack Craske, one of a group of workers at the world famous Colman’s mustard factory, in new play The Canada Boys. The play was directed by fEast founder Mandy McKenna, née Jaquarello (T 71) and toured to small and mid-scale venues throughout Norfolk during April.

Julia Sandiford (BA A 03) appeared alongside Tim Pigott-Smith in the world premiere of Stroke of Luck by Larry Belling at Finsbury Park’s new theatre venue, the Park Theatre, from 29 January until 2 March.

Gillian Bevan (S 76) played the role of Hera opposite Lily Cole in The Last Days of Troy by Simon Armitage. The show played from 8 May until 7 June at the Royal Exchange, Manchester, before transferring to Shakespeare’s Globe where it played from 10- 28 June.

HAMPSTEAD THEATRE Ben Caplan (S 95), Dominic Tighe (BA A 05) and Lillie Flynn (BA A 07) played the roles of Kassner, Wace and Rasa in Sunny Afternoon at Hampstead Theatre. The show ran from 14 April until 24 May and will transfer to the Harold Pinter Theatre in the autumn. Beatrice Scirocchi (BA A 12) appeared in The Mystae at Hampstead Theatre Downstairs from 13 February until 15 March.

PLAYHOUSE THEATRE 1984, adapted and created by Duncan MacMillan (MA ATP 02), transferred to the West End’s Playhouse Theatre after a sell-out run at the Almeida Theatre and will tour the UK in autumn. Tom Gibbons (BA TP 08) is the show’s Sound Designer.

POLKA THEATRE Gavin James (PG Dip AMT 00), Luisa Guerreiro (MA MT 05) and Adebayo Bolaji (MA MT 08) appeared in Filament Theatre’s production of Momo at the Polka Theatre, a specialist space for young audiences in Wimbledon, from 13-22 March.

QUEEN’S THEATRE National Theatre Rupert Vansittart (S 82), Harriet Thorpe (S 81) and Oliver Chris (BA A 00) appear in Great Britain by Richard Bean in the National’s Lyttleton Theatre. The play runs until 23 August and features music by Grant Olding (S 94).

Josie Brightwell (BA A 11) and Rhidian Marc (BA A 09) appeared as Factory Girl and Courfeyrac in the record breaking musical Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre in London’s West End. Produced by Cameron Mackintosh (SM 65), the show won the BBC Radio 2 Audience Award at the 2014 Olivier Awards.

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ROYAL SHAKESPEARE COMPANY Elliot Barnes-Worrell (BA A 12) appeared as Prince John and Francis in the RSC’s productions of Henry IV, Parts I and II. The shows played in Stratford-upon-Avon from 18 March and will run until 16 September.

YOUNG VIC Luke Norris (BA A 08) played Rudolpho in Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge at the Young Vic. The show, which was directed by Ivo van Hove, ran from 4 April until 7 June and featured Tom Gibbons (BA TP 08) as the show’s Sound Designer. Corey Johnson (S 88) appeared as Mitch in the Young Vic’s revival of A Streetcar Named Desire, directed by Benedict Andrews and starring Gillian Anderson. He was joined in the cast by Nicholas Gecks (S 78). The show played from 23 July and will run until 6 September.

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni in the community Central’s applied theatre and education courses produce alumni who use theatre-making to change lives and inspire possibilities across communities.

Top to bottom: Pronoun (cover image by John McAreavy, cover design by Ned Hoste, 2H); Gemma Woffinden; Evan Placey (photo by Katie Musgrave)


Homegrown (photo by Sarah Bartley)

CREATING THEATRE AROUND THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM Sarah Bartley (MA AT 12) and Ruth Jaya Hartlein (MA AT 13) are pooling their expertise to facilitate a theatre project for women with experience of the criminal justice system. Sarah and Jaya want to develop their successful working relationship that started with a Central placement at Doncaster Prison. ‘Homegrown’ is their first project. It will assist women who have committed offences to re-integrate into their community and to root themselves more deeply into their home, however they might define that. The group is presently working hard towards a showing, where they will share the outcomes of their explorations through a set of staged images and short scenes. Those will communicate something of the longing for a home, as well as addressing

the disruptions in the women’s lives, dealing with issues of displacement and abandonment. Homegrown is supported by the Honourable Company of Weavers and run in collaboration with Women Ahead in east London. Sarah and Jaya have also been joined by Rebecca Adamson (MA AT 14) as a volunteer, bringing together three years of the MA Applied Theatre course. In the autumn, supported by Awards For All, the two practitioners will be offering a bigger theatre project, this time working with male ex-offenders.

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There’s a revolution going on at The Royal Opera House as Sir Simon Rattle prepares to conduct his orchestra and a choir of nuns to a backdrop of people who have experienced the criminal justice system, unemployment and homelessness.


ALUMNI COLLABORATE ON NT CONNECTIONS PROGRAMME As the Youth Theatre Director of the West Yorkshire Playhouse, Gemma Woffinden (PG Cert DTYP 09) is always looking for new writing to challenge the young company and their audiences. This year, she was offered the opportunity to work with Evan Placey (MA WSBM 07) as part of the National Theatre Connections programme, on his play Pronoun. Pronoun tells the story of a young transgender man named Dean and the effect his transition has on his boyfriend, his parents, and friends. Evan researched the play by working with trans young people from Gendered Intelligence, a company co-founded by Central’s Pro-Dean (Students), Dr Catherine McNamara. Pronoun was one of ten new plays commissioned by the NT Connections programme, which aims to inspire 13-19 year olds with new playwriting and encourage involvement in all aspects of theatre making. This year, fellow graduate Luke Norris (BA A 08) was another of the 10 playwrights involved, with his play Hearts,

a comic, coming of age story about the beautiful game. Pronoun was performed by 40 youth companies across the UK, opening up discussions about transgender issues with both the young people taking part and audiences alike. Gemma saw the play as an exciting opportunity for her group to explore the world of a transgender teenager through a funny and moving story. Having worked with Evan before on his play Girls Like That, Gemma knew that Pronoun would spark lots of discussion within rehearsals and invite the Youth Theatre to consider new ways of seeing the world. Speaking to the Alumni Office, Gemma said, “In the very early stages of rehearsal the company were keen to learn as much about transgender issues as possible. We wanted to create a piece of theatre with integrity, that was sensitive to the experience of transgender teenagers and that would engage the audience with the

character’s struggle. Throughout rehearsals we consulted a Leeds-based transgender support group called Transtastic. The group attended the first read through, watched rehearsals and contributed to many of the decisions made about characters’ motivations and objectives. The Youth Theatre members were very proud of their production of Pronoun and have learnt so much, whilst having a lot of fun in the process. Audience members came out of the theatre quoting lines from the play and buzzing with questions about the characters’ experiences.” On 7 July, Cornwall College St Austell, the selected youth group out of the 40 who performed Pronoun, staged the play at the National Theatre, as part of NT Connections closing festival. The play is published by Nick Hern Books, and also appears in the collection of NT Connections plays by Methuen.

ROYAL OPERA HOUSE In the absence of scenery the community ensemble become the moving backdrop to Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites. Hidden amongst 120 revolutionaries is Tim Doolan (MA AT 13), who normally sees the drama from the director’s perspective. Now he finds himself supporting the ensemble whilst in the action. At the same time he works alongside ROH’s Learning and

Participation team, which includes Assistant Director Hazel Gould (MA ATP 01).

followed by an invitation to apply for placements that are especially allotted to the project.

In addition to the rehearsals, participants engaged in singing and drama workshops, which culminated in their own performance to friends and family. They also had the chance to attend CV workshops and a tour of the Opera House,

Applied Theatre can take you to some of society’s most marginalised areas, so the last place Tim expected to be was in an Opera House facing society’s most privileged. This really must be a revolution.

Dialogues des Carmelites (photo by Stephen Cummiskey, courtesy of ROH)

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Supporting central Our community of supporters continues to grow, playing a vital role in securing the future of Central and our students.

Over the past year, donations received have given Central the flexibility to respond quickly to areas of greatest priority and need. Thanks to the generosity of Central’s donors over the past 12 months we have been able to fund 15 student scholarships, support the production costs of a postgraduate show, and help our students buy study kits needed to start their training. To those alumni, Pivot Club members, trusts, foundations and other friends of the School who have helped make this possible – we offer our sincere thanks for your continued support.


The late Amanda Pointer (photo courtesy of Joyce and Dick Pointer)

Giving IN MEMORY Leaving a gift in memory of a Central graduate allows you to celebrate the life of a loved one, whilst keeping their memory alive within the School. We are deeply touched that the families of two Central alumni recently chose to give a donation in memory of a relative. Their unrestricted gifts have enabled the School to respond immediately to the most pressing needs of our students, for which we are sincerely grateful. Joyce and Dick Pointer, parents of Amanda Pointer (S 86) said, “Our daughter Amanda was a beautiful and talented actress who enjoyed her time at Central so much. Her life and career were sadly cut short on her 50th birthday on 28 July 2013. She was loved and is missed by so many.” If you would like to discuss an In Memoriam gift for general unrestricted use or a special tribute project, please contact Meg Ryan, Head of Individual Giving, on +44 (0)20 7449 1636 or email

Pivot Club members and current students at the Widows supporters’ reception (photo by Karla Gowlett)

Our Pivot Club members are a wonderful group of individuals who all share a passion for theatre and who show their commitment to its future by supporting Central. The Pivot Club offers three levels of membership: •  Pivot Club Friends - £50+ pa per member (or from £4 per month on Direct Debit) •  Pivot Club Circle - £250+ pa per member (or from £20 per month on Direct Debit) •  Pivot Club Stalls - £1,000+ pa per member (or from £83 per month on Direct Debit)

continues to provide the very best training needed for individuals to succeed in the industry. As one Pivot Club member says: “Being a Club member and seeing the commitment of students and quality of the work at Central has been an incredibly fulfilling experience. But maybe even more striking has been the most obvious value the School places on those who support it. You’re made to feel a ‘bit of the place’ yourself!”

Those giving at our Pivot Circle level or above are offered regular opportunities to visit the School. Recent events have included pre and post-show receptions surrounding student productions of Widows, Grease, Man Beast and Virtue, As You Like It and The Good Person of Setzuan; an invitation to ‘London Walks’ – a project involving BA Theatre Practice students creating immersive installations and performances based on their exploratory walks around different areas of London; and a special ‘Behind the Scenes’ tour of the School.

We are extremely grateful to all members of the Pivot Club for their continued support and passion for the School. We look forward to showing them more of what Central has to be proud of. Looking ahead to the rest of 2014, our Circle and Stalls members can enjoy further supporters’ evenings around our students’ autumn term productions and guided tours of West End theatres. Our Stalls level members can also look forward the opportunity to visit a BA Drama, Applied Theatre and Education course student at work on their industry placement, as well as a private tour of the School and, next summer, we will be delighted to welcome back our Pivot Friends for our Annual Supporters Reception.

The Pivot Club gives members the chance to see first-hand work of current Central students and provide the School with a source of much needed income to ensure it

Thank you to all our valued members for making the Pivot Club such a thriving community and for demonstrating your belief in the work of Central’s students.

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Catherine Lambert, née Read (T 40) first met Elsie Fogerty in 1927 when, at the age of nine, she awarded her a first place prize in a class for verse speaking at The Croydon Music Festival. They met again in 1937, when Catherine enrolled at Central to train as a Teacher of Speech and Drama, where she had won a much sought after Pivot Club Scholarship. Speaking recently to the Alumni Office, Catherine said, “Having sold my London home and moved to a delightful retirement flat, I have had what I can only describe as a small windfall! Most of this I have shared with my extended family, but I wanted to include a gift as a belated thank you to Elsie and the other wonderful teachers at Central.”

“I know how fortunate I was to be awarded the Pivot Scholarship, and then to have three wonderful years with Central under Elsie Fogerty’s leadership. Elsie’s voice and her advice have been in my mind ever since. Her words “Take it through dear, through, quite through!” have been an inspiration to me and even now, at the age of 95, they are still part of my philosophy for life.”

We send a heartfelt thank you to Catherine for her generosity and are delighted to welcome her as a member of the Pivot Club.

HOW YOU COULD HELP If you enjoyed your time at the School, and it had a positive impact on your career, then you may like to consider joining the support for Central. You may think that your donation would be a mere drop in the ocean, however when combined, gifts from alumni can make a huge difference to Central and our students. • Make a one-off gift via the Newsletter contact form or online at to support areas of greatest need around the School If every Central graduate donated £10 each, we could raise over £80,000 • Become a member of our regular giving scheme, the Pivot Club, for as little as £4 a month (see page 16 and for details) If 30 alumni joined as Pivot Circle members, Central could provide full scholarship support to two students. • Leave a lasting legacy by making a gift to Central in your Will or giving a donation in memory of a fellow graduate (see page 16 for details). Photo by Patrick Baldwin

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni abroad We hear from alumni who are undertaking projects around the world.




Susie Ferguson (BA DE 99) became the new co-host of Radio New Zealand National’s Morning Report. She started presenting the show alongside Guyon Espiner from 2 April.

Sarah Calver (BA A 08) was recently awarded the 100˚ Festival Jury prize for her solo show I Gave Him an Orchid, at Sophiensaele in Berlin.


Sam Peter Jackson (BA A 03) premiered his play Öffentliches Eigentum, directed by double Olivier Award-winning director Michael Bogdanov, to critical acclaim at the Schlosspark Theater, Berlin in March.

VaVaVoom Theatre, formed by S. Sunna Reynisdóttir (BA TP 12) and Sara Martí (MA ATP 10) collaborated with Bedroom Community for the premiere of their new music theatre performance Wide Slumber. The show was performed at the Tjarnarbíó Theatre during the 28th annual Reykjavík Arts Festival on 24 May. Ingi Bekk (BA TP 13) was the show’s Lighting and Video Designer.

Andrew Visnevski (S 76) directed a new French adaptation of Nikolai Gogol’s Diary of a Madman starring Marc-Antoine Damidot. The show was produced by Eprouve in association with Theatre Alive! and premiered at the Avignon Festival from 5-26 July. Andrew is RADA’s Course Leader for MA Theatre Lab and MA Text & Performance, as well as the Academy’s Associate Director. Lea Hobson (MA S 13), a freelance scenographer and architect, won an exhibition design competition for the MuCEM Museum in Marseille, which opened in June. She will also be the set designer for the opera Snow White by Marius Felix Lange in Fribourg in 2015.

HONG KONG Tiff Chan (MA MS 11) and Naomi Harvey (BA TP 08) were involved in Paean Productions’ The Loneliest Whale [Let technology be your friend when no one else is] – an original devised physical theatre piece written and directed by Victoria Allington. The Loneliest Whale was performed at the Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre in Hong Kong in June.

Sunna also designed puppets, costumes and set for the production Little Hamlet at Reykjavík City Theatre, which premiered on 12 April.

LEBANON In January, Sany Baki (MA CA 12) performed in A Story, Biography, and Song, a play about the early life of Prophet Mohammad. In April, he performed as one of the tour guides in Watch Your Step, a site-specific performance directed by Sahar Assaf and written by Robert Myers. Inspired by Griselda Gambaro’s Information for Foreigners, the performance






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highlighted and questioned the current situation in Lebanon by re-enacting different scenarios that happened during the Lebanese Civil War.

RUSSIA Polly Bennett (MA MS 11) worked as Mass Cast Choreographer on the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Opening, Closing and Paralympic Opening Ceremonies. Working in a team of 10 she rehearsed volunteers and professional performers for four months in Krasnodar and the purpose-built stadium in Sochi. She said, “After working on London 2012, it was a mad and challenging ride, but amazing to see all the hard work of every department come together and create four unique ceremonies. I am very lucky to have had the opportunity.”

SOUTH AFRICA Jan Moran Neil, née Titterington (B.Ed DE 76) wrote A President in Waiting, which started rehearsals in June with Amy Leigh Vermaak as Director. The play will be performed in November at the Desmond Tutu Foundation in Cape Town and was collaboration between Ulutsha Theatre Company, ALAS Academy, Desmond Tutu Foundation and Creative Ink Productions.

Wanda Ventham (S 56) and Delena Kidd (S 55) played sisters in Entertaining Angels by Richard Everett, which was presented by Pieter Toerien and directed by Richard Digby Day. The show ran at Theatre On The Bay in Cape Town from 19 March until 15 April. Speaking to the Alumni Office, Delena said, “It is now 60 years since we were in the Albert Hall together and it’s all gone in a flash!”

USA Joella Tepper (BA TP 13) is the Assistant Producer of a resident company of the American Reperatory Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Their production of Icarus, a multi-disciplinary musical, was presented at Club Oberon from 1-11 May. Stuart Warmflash (S 71) wrote Crush the Serpent, which was directed by Bram Lewis (S 71) in a Project Rushmore Theatre presentation in New York City this April. Larissa Archer (MA CA 07) co-wrote and performed as a dancer in Boxcar Theatre’s Speakeasy, an immersive theatrical experience which ended its six month soldout run in San Francisco on 21 June. She also performed in San Francisco Playhouse’s production of Theresa Rebeck’s Seminar, which played from 29 April until 14 June.

Together with Susana Moscatel, Erick Merino (MA PS 94) translated and adapted The Vagina Monologues (Los Monólogos) for the Mexican stage 15 years ago. He re-adapted Los Monólogos again when the show returned to its original performance space, the West Side Theatre, where it ran during May this year. This was the first revival of the play in New York using a Mexican production team and was the first time that a play entirely in Spanish was presented with an open run in an off-Broadway theatre. Brittany N. Williams (MA A 11) was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Resident Musical at the 2014 Helen Hayes Awards. She was recognised for her role in Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds, which played at The New Victory Theater in New York from 7-23 February. This summer, Natasha Bergg and Jamie Wilcox (both MA AT 11) took their community theatre youth programme, Connect, Play, Create! (CPC!), into its second year in various locations in Utah. Jamie and Natasha collaborated to develop a portfolio of play-based projects aimed at young people who ordinarily wouldn’t have access to participation in creative arts activities, and who face a range of challenges. Two current students Samantha Schofield and Serena Mills (both MA AT 14) joined CPC! as co-facilitators for their Applied Practices module. Colin McPhillamy (S 83) played Anthony in End of the Rainbow from 15 January until 9 February at the Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre in Miami. He received two nominations at the 28th annual Carbonell Awards – South Florida’s Theatre and Arts Honours: Best Actor in a Play for Exit the King at Palm Beach Dramaworks; and Best Supporting Actor in a Play for Dial M for Murder at Maltz Jupiter Theatre.




CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

1 The Loneliest Whale (photo © Jack Barker at Kevla Photography) 2 Sany Baki in Watch Your Step (photo by Ahmad Tahan) 3 Little Hamlet, with puppetry design by S. Sunna Reynisdóttir (photo by Grímur Bjarnason) 4 Polly Bennett at Sochi (photo courtesy of the Sochi Backstage Photographic Team) 5 Sarah Calver in I Gave Him an Orchid (photo by Roger Rossell) 6 Lea Hobson’s scenography design 7 Connect, Play, Create! (photo courtesy of Natasha Bergg) 8 Delena Kidd and Wanda Ventham in Entertaining Angels (photo courtesy of Timothy Cumberbatch) 9 A President in Waiting (courtesy of Jan Moran Neil)

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni SCREEN NEWS A number of Central graduates are making their mark in TV and film, both in front and behind the camera.


5 3


BIN MEN Untethered Films, an indie collective run by Hamza Jeetooa and Isabel Steuble-Johnson (both MA AS 10), produced new short film Bin Men, which was written by Spencer B Evoy (MA WSBM 10). It starred James Farrar and Tom Colley (both MA AS 10). Hamza was one of the winners of a competition called the Digital Shorts Commission, run by the London Asian Film Festival and Arts Council England. He received a small grant to produce and direct the film, which marked his directing debut. Bin Men premiered in the summer at the London Asian Film Festival and tells the story of Mick and Pete, who set out to unload some rubbish but instead wind up unloading a whole heap of emotional baggage.

BOY MEETS GIRL Rebecca Root (MA VS 08) recently starred in a sitcom pilot for the BBC. Boy Meets Girl by Elliott Kerrigan was one of the winning scripts in the BBC Writersroom/Trans Comedy Award competition in 2013. The competition sought new scripts that featured


trans people in a positive light in mainstream television comedy. Rebecca played Judy, a transwoman in her 40s, who meets and falls for a man several years her junior. As a transwoman herself Rebecca was delighted at the opportunity to play a part that finally matched her casting so neatly. The show was screened at the BBC Sitcom Showcase as part of the Salford Comedy Festival in March and the BBC is currently considering its further development.

BRAND NEW TOY Joe Connor (BA TP 08) is a music video, commercial and short film director and most recently shot Paul Weller’s music video for his single, ‘Brand New Toy’. Rather suitably, Joe found inspiration from his favourite childhood toy to frame Paul and his band’s performance. The kaleidoscope effect is not down to digital trickery, but to old school art and craft. For the likes of Paul Weller only a real kaleidoscope would do, so they made one 30 feet in length, and did it all in-camera, true to his theatrical traditions. The video is available to watch now on YouTube.

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CROSSBONES Tracy Ifeachor (BA A 07) starred opposite John Malkovich in new American drama Crossbones, playing Nenna Ajanlekoko – a deadly sword wielding pirate with a heartstopping secret. This gritty 10 part series first aired on NBC on 30 May and was filmed entirely on location in the US territory of Puerto Rico. Speaking to the Alumni Office, Tracy said the role was “a dream come true.”

FARGO Martin Freeman (S 95) starred as Lester Nygaard alongside Billy Bob Thornton in the hit US dark comedy crime drama Fargo. Inspired by the 1996 film by the Coen brothers, the show premiered on FX on 15 April and was nominated for Best MiniSeries at the 2014 Critics’ Choice Awards. Martin was also recognised for his role, being nominated in the category of Best Actor in a Movie or Mini-Series.








Several Central alumni featured in the 4th series of acclaimed fantasy drama Game of Thrones, which aired on HBO in April. Kit Harington (BA A 08) starred as Jon Snow, whilst Jerome Flynn (S 84) reprised his role as Bron. Fellow graduates Will Tudor (BA A 11) and Gabrielle Dempsey (BA A 10) also appeared in the series as Olyvar and the Innkeeper’s Daughter. Nina Ayres (BA TS 97) worked on the show as Assistant Costume Designer, with Nicola Miners (BA TS 98) and Bryony Tyrrell (BA TP 08) working as Costume Makers.

Sandy Foster (BA A 08) featured in Mike Leigh’s latest feature, Mr Turner, a biopic of the artist JMW Turner. Timothy Spall starred in the title role and Sandy played his daughter, Evelina. Mr Turner was presented at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for the prestigious Palme D’Or.

I’LL BE HOME SOON Valmike Rampersad (MA AS 07) appeared in short film I’ll Be Home Soon, a thriller about a French Algerian who is suddenly held captive by his family when they suspect him to be a terrorist. The film, which also featured The Mummy actor Ipalé, had its European premiere in the Official Selection at the Frestroia Film Festival, Portugal in June.


RIDE ALONG William Neenan (MA ATC 10) appeared in the American action comedy Ride Along as the Serbian Boss, alongside Kevin Hart, Ice Cube, John Leguizamo and Laurence Fishburne. The film was first released by Universal in the US on 17 January, before being shown in the UK from 28 February.

STARRED UP David Avery (MA AS 09) played Ashley alongside Jack O’Connell, Rupert Friend and Ben Mendelsohn in the UK prison drama Starred Up. The film, which was directed by David Mackenzie, was released in the UK and Europe on 21 March and will be released in the US in August.

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Brand New Toy (courtesy of Virgin Records) Martin Freeman in Fargo (courtesy of Channel 4) 3 Rebecca Root at MediaCityUk for the Salford Comedy Showcase (photo by Kathryn Kirton) 4 Tracy Ifeachor with John Malkovich (photo courtesy of Sandro Films and NBC) 5 Kit Harington in Game of Thrones (courtesy of British Sky Broadcasting) 6 Hamza Jeetooa directs James Farrar and Tom Colley in Bin Men (photo courtesy of Untethered Films) 7 Valmike Rampersad in I’ll Be Home Soon (courtesy of One Big Mop Productions) 8 Jerome Flynn in Game of Thrones (courtesy of British Sky Broadcasting) 9 David Avery (second from left) at the premiere of Starred Up (photo by James Gilham) 10 William Neenan (right) in Ride Along 11 Sandy Foster. 1 2

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


CENTRAL CONNECTS NEWS Central Connects draws on specialist techniques developed in arts and community education and performance practice to offer a wide range of learning and training opportunities appropriate to the needs of a diverse range of people.

As part of the School’s aim to widen participation in Higher Education, Central Connects supports a range of outreach activities. Through these initiatives we aim to help students at schools and colleges discover more about the opportunities available to them and encourage them to consider ways to fulfil their potential and reach their goals.

STUDENT AMBASSADORS AT CENTRAL Our group of trained Student Ambassadors visit schools and colleges, delivering the following workshop activities to potential students who are studying drama or art and design courses:

Martins Imhangbe (photo by Patrick Baldwin)

Martins Imhangbe (BA A 13) Student-life Talk A one-hour workshop which offers a chance to meet two of our current students and hear first-hand about their journey into Higher Education and their experience so far at Central. A question and answer session is also included. Discover Central This workshop is aimed at students interested in studying drama or art and design courses in Higher Education. It raises awareness of the all of the undergraduate courses we offer at Central; including Acting, Drama, Applied Theatre and Education, and Theatre Practice.

“Since graduating from the BA Acting: Collaborative and Devised Theatre course, I have been invited by the Central Connects department to facilitate acting masterclasses for partner colleges. These masterclasses are for potential students interested in the performing arts and who are looking to train at drama school or study in Higher Education. The workshops have been held at Central, at City and Islington College and at LeSoCo (Lewisham and Southwark College). It was an amazing experience for me to return to my former college, LeSoCo, and deliver acting workshops to their current students, and hopefully to be an inspiration to them.

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It has been a pleasure to be able to share my experience of drama school and also inspire those who are keen to learn and looking to pursue a career in the performing arts. I have learnt so much from running these workshops and it has enabled me to continue this type of work. In May, I performed in a four-hander production of Romeo and Juliet (primary Shakespeare) at the Orange Tree Theatre. It was great fun being able to make Shakespeare accessible to a primary school audience.”



received; the Managing Director was particularly impressed by our unique and innovative approach to training.

Did you know that only 13% of Looked-After Children achieved five A*-C GCSEs including English and mathematics, compared to 58% of their peers? And whilst 38% of 18 and 19 year olds are in Higher Education, that figure falls to 6% for care leavers.

In May, we delivered training courses at TMF, St John’s Hospice, Cognizant, Westbury Group and again at The Open University. We regularly collaborate with St John’s Hospice, and this particular training workshop was a culmination of a 12-month partnership. Over the course of three days, our team of trainers led a group of doctors through an intensive training programme, looking at building doctor-patient empathy, improving colleague communication and learning active listening tools and techniques. We designed the programme to record and evaluate the improvement of the doctors’ communication style throughout the training; we did this by using actors and filming the doctors enacting specific, challenging scenarios. We hope to deliver more of this training in the future. Those that participated gave incredible feedback and certainly felt that this style of training really improved their communication in their everyday, professional life. We also invited a film crew to produce a case study of the training, which was completed in July.

Looked-After Children and care leavers are a priority group for the Office for Fair Access, to which Central submits an annual Access Agreement. Seconded to the Central Connects office for one day a week, Victoria Edwards (Placements Coordinator) has been working on a number of initiatives to support these groups. In collaboration with the University of Hertfordshire and the University of Cambridge, Central Connects were thrilled to host a three day summer school, taking place from 28-30 July, for 20 Looked-After Children, aged 15-16, from north London. This was a fantastic opportunity to partner with two very different institutions, offering these young people the chance to spend the day at Central and to experience some very exciting workshops.

COMMUNICATION TRAINING The power to communicate is at the heart of performance. The art of influential voice, speech, presentation and communication in a business environment is an identical framework to an actor’s performance. Central Connects develops bespoke training courses, team away days and skills workshops drawing on Central’s expertise in Voice and Performance Practice. Our tailored Training Solutions offer a hands-on learning experience that can be directly transferred into the workplace for maximum impact. It’s been an incredibly busy few months in Central Connects, as we delivered training to a diverse group of people, ranging from architects to MPs, doctors to IT consultants. In April, we delivered training courses at The Institute of Education, for FDA & MiP, The Open University and Aukett Swanke. The Aukett Swanke project saw us work with a group of architects, giving them training to help bring their ideas and designs to life through effective presentation and communication. The project was warmly

The summer term saw us undertake projects in Moscow – where we delivered training on behalf of Skills Academy, and in Hong Kong – where we delivered a three-day training experience for the University. We also delivered projects for Abbott Nutrition, NHS Chelsea & Westminster and Imperial College London.

CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR TEACHERS Over the last few months we have successfully launched our Teacher CPD programme, offering schools and colleges two training programmes: Communicate: An interactive workshop drawing on Central’s expertise in Initial Teacher Training and delivering CPD and Voice Coaching.

Photo by Patrick Baldwin

Dramatise: Designed for teachers and educators who are not drama specialists, but wish to enhance their practice and increase confidence in using dramaorientated learning strategies. We’ve had a great response from schools and teachers; on 13 May we delivered a Communicate workshop at the Chestnut Grove School and we were fortunate enough to collaborate with the Old Vic theatre in delivering theatre training to a group of their partnered teachers. We hope to build on this early success and have a positive impact on the way teachers communicate in the classroom and embed drama within their teaching.

OPEN COURSES In March, we launched our Open Courses, evening courses designed to be affordable and accessible, providing innovative training in a safe, creative and secure environment. Following the success of these courses in March, further sessions were scheduled to take place in July on the topics: Vocal Power, Performance in Presentation, and Impact and Influence.

For further details about Central Connects, including its business and short courses, Saturday classes and Summer School, please contact or visit CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Alumni In the building Thank you to the following Central alumni who recently returned to the School to lend their professional expertise. If you are planning a visit, please let the Alumni Office know.

Freddie Harris (BA TP 09) worked as a professional Stage Manager on Central’s production of The Good Person of Setzuan. Anna Healey (MA MS 09) returned to Central to teach movement on the MA Acting courses. Sophie Hopgood, née Walding (PGCE D 04) gave a talk to BA DATE and MA Applied Theatre students on her experiences working as a drama teacher.

Adelina Ong (MA AT 13) has been supporting students with media skills in the Learning Centre, whilst also pursuing her MPhil/Phd at Central. She offers one-to-one sessions for anyone who needs help with Mahara, Zotero, Prezi and Learnzone, and has also created several e-learning videos.

Sylvan Baker (MA AT 06) taught on the Reflective Practitioner module as part of the BA DATE course, giving students an insight into careers in applied theatre. Katie Baskeyfield (BA DATE 13) was the Musical Director on the BA DATE students’ production of The Dreams of Sleeping Beauty at the Minack Theatre. Cate Blanchard (BA TP 09) worked as a Video Tutor and mentor for students on the BA Theatre Practice: Production Lighting and Theatre Lighting Design courses. Louise Borg-Costanzi Potts (MA ATP 09) ran a session with the BA DATE students on Applied Dance. Simon Dodi (BA DATE 11) has been working with BA DATE students on the Collaborative Outreach project.

Natasha Dubowski (BA TP 13) returned to work as a professional Stage Manager for the BA Acting course’s Bridge Project. Alan Fotheringhame (BA TP 12) worked as a VectorWorks Trainer for students on the BA Theatre Practice: Production Lighting and Theatre Lighting Design courses. Chris Foxon (MA CP 13), Producer at Papatango theatre company, returned to Central with Papatango Artistic Director George Turvey to deliver a writing workshop for MA Writing for Stage and Broadcast Media students. Deborah Garvey (MA VS 08) recently took up a part time position as a Lecturer in Voice on MA Voice Studies. She has been working as a visiting lecturer since 2009 on the BA Acting: Collaborative and Devised Theatre and MA Music Theatre programmes.

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Sheryl Malcome (BA DATE 05) gave a talk to BA DATE students on life as a freelancer and how to manage your finances. Natalie Mitchell (BA DATE 05) led two sessions with students: ‘Getting a Job and Writing a CV’, and ‘How to Start Out as a Playwright’. Ita O’Brien (MA MS 07) has been working with the BA Theatre Practice Performing Arts students as a Movement Tutor. Gemma Woffinden (PG Cert. DTYP 09) returned to talk about her role as a Youth Theatre director. Hannah Sharkey (BA DATE 11) assisted Vicky Ireland (T 66) on a show that the BA DATE students toured around schools in Oldham. The show was booked by Becky Proudfoot (BA DATE 10) as part of Oldham Theatre Workshop. Joanne Mcgahon (BA DATE 13), Mike Gentle (BA DATE 10), Will Wade (BA DATE 08 & MA PPR 10) and Matt Withers (BA DATE 12) all worked as Company Managers on BA DATE projects in Cornwall during the summer term. The following alumni returned to teach on the MA Movement Studies course: Roanna Mitchell (MA MS 09), Sinead O’Keeffe (BA A 01), Dave Nolan (MA MS 09) and Zoë Cobb (MA MS 07).


BA Acting: Collaborative and Devised Theatre students in Loaded (photo by Patrick Baldwin)

Peter Eltringham (BA TP 10), Peter Malkin (BA TP 12), Dominic Kennedy (BA TP 13), Gareth Fry (BA TP 96), and Jamie Flockton (BA TP 10) all returned as Visiting Lecturers and mentors for the Theatre Sound course. MA Advanced Theatre Practice welcomed back numerous alumni to teach this year: Daphna Attias (MA ATP 04) was a Workshop Leader in the Performer Practices Cluster; Hannah Ringham (MA ATP 98), Melanie Wilson (MA ATP 01) and Gemma Brockis (MA ATP 98) were all Practitioners for Practitioner Study; Mischa Twitchin (MA ATP 98) ran the Practitioner Study lectures; Hannah Barker (MA ATP 03) gave a talk on her theatre company Analogue; Nohar Lazarovitch (MA ATP 2012) coordinated the Practices Unit; Alex Eisenberg (MA ATP 07) taught documentation sessions; David Rosenberg (MA ATP 98) gave a tutorial with the Performing Research group; Douglas O’Connell (BA TP 02 & MA ATP 04) was the Unit Tutor for Web Presence option; and Jessica Swale (MA ATP 06) gave a seminar as part of the Performance Composition Cluster. Elyssa Livergant (MA ATP 03), Joseph Mercier (MA ATP 08 & PhD 14), and Deirdre McLaughlin (MA ATP 09 & PhD 14) were all Personal Academic Tutors for MA ATP students during 2013-14. Several alumni returned to work with BA Theatre Practice Production Lighting and Theatre Lighting Design students, including: Jo Roberts (BA TP 07) who was a Lighting Mentor; Dom Houlison and Gareth Wide (both BA TP 12) who were Lighting Programming mentors; and Fridthjofur Thorsteinsson (BA TP 10) who was a Lighting Design mentor. The following alumni worked on student productions as Stage Management team mentors: Stuart Campbell (BA TP 13) for The Twee Musketeers; Sophie Acreman (BA TP 02) for Love and Information; Libby Spencer (BA TP 08) for Loaded; and Hannah Boustred (BA TP 05) for Jumpy and NSFW.

Sinéad Rushe (MA ATP 98) directed final year BA Acting: Collaborative and Devised Theatre students in the world premiere of Loaded. The original dance theatre show, described as ‘violent, lyrical and funny’, grappled with the mechanics of weight and what happens when we face the limits of our own strength. Loaded, a joint production between Central and out of inc Theatre Company, was performed from 5 - 8 March at Jackson’s Lane.

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


EVENT ROUNd-up ACCIDENTAL FESTIVAL 2014 Produced and curated by second year students on the BA Theatre Practice Performance Arts course, The Accidental Festival is an annual opportunity for artists to share work, take risks, and present fresh ideas to a diverse audience. Heather Chalmers (BA TP 15), Head of Executive for this year’s Accidental Festival, tells us more. “In the 9th year of The Accidental Festival, we wanted to push the boat out as far as possible to wow our audiences, and being at the Roundhouse for our fourth consecutive year made this even more exciting! The Accidental Festival changes each year, depending on the interests and passions of the students. This means that every year the public is witness to something fresh, new and exciting. This year, we had 72 acts come and perform at the Festival, including puppetry, dance, new writing, music and physical theatre. These kind of risks are something we, as students of Performance Art, are encouraged to take, and without the support of our tutors and alumni from the course, wouldn’t have been possible. During this year’s Festival, which took place from 22-25 May, we had the amazing opportunity to work with our fellow students on BA Theatre Practice,

including those on the Technical Production Management, Production Lighting and Sound Design strands. The whole of the Accidental Company are in awe of these students, and the Festival could not have happened without them. Highlights from the Festival include Edinburgh Fringe veterans Tap Tap Theatre performing their comedy piece Captain Morgan and The Sands of Time, alongside mini folk-opera A Modern Day Romance, performed by theatre company, Silly People. But that was just the beginning; we also collaborated with SpaceLab, as part of The Prague Quadrennial, to host various shows and installations for cities and establishments all over Europe. This was a fantastic opportunity for our company, and to connect and understand the performance art and theatre communities of these cities was amazing! The Accidental Festival company cannot begin to thank everyone who was involved in the Festival, and also everyone who attended. The chance to produce a full four-day festival for the public, alongside upcoming and established artists is something few students can dream of, and we are extremely grateful to Central and the Roundhouse for making this possible.”

James Warwick (top) and event attendees

NEW YORK GATHERING In March this year, over 40 alumni and friends of Central gathered together to enjoy an evening celebration at the Coffee House in New York City. The evening coincided with the end of our New York auditions and interviews and marked the beginning of the next phase of international student recruitment campaign, with staff moving on to Santiago, Sydney and Singapore to complete their recruitment cycle. The event itself was very informal and an opportunity for alumni (old and new) to meet one another. Older alumni were able to offer advice and support to those settling in to life on the other side of the pond and attendees were able to catch up with former tutors over a glass of wine and share news of their careers. The event was also a chance for the Alumni Office to introduce our new East Coast Alumni Rep, James Warwick (S 68) to the group. James will be working with the alumni team and helping to keep you connected through the East Coast Facebook group, as well as exploring other opportunities for Central graduates on the East Coast to meet, network and collaborate.

Photo by Pierre Laurent

For more alumni news, visit

If you haven’t already joined the East Coast Facebook group, then please do! Simply search for ‘Central Alumni – USA East Coast’ and request to join.


CLASS OF 1989 REUNION This summer, the Class of 1989 returned to Central for their 25 Year Reunion. Ajay Parekh (SM 89) tells us more. “On a Saturday in late June, I walked out of Swiss Cottage tube station with the same anticipation I must have had on my first day at Central, back in September 1987. What a fantastic day! Thank you to all who attended the Class of ‘89 Reunion event on 21 June. Actors, stage managers, speech therapists, teachers and drama and movement therapists alike, all met with the same excitement and enthusiasm. It was as if it were yesterday. Seeing classrooms A and B on the top floor was particularly exciting, as well as talking about the old café. We shared many stories about productions, costume changes, memories of abseiling down the building, buildings

Attendees of the alumni networking evening Class of 1989 Reunion (photo by Ajay Parekh)

that no longer exist and shows we did with Judi Dench, Danny Boyle and Mark Wing-Davey. Of course, we spent as much time (and money) in the Swiss Cottage pub afterwards. 25 years on we all agreed that Central had made us all richer and grateful for the career path that it had set us on.”

ALUMNI NETWORKING EVENING On 3 April, we held the second of our networking evenings for Central alumni, which this time was themed around the topic of starting up a theatre company. We were delighted to welcome back Clara Giraud (MA ATP 08) of PanicLab, Daphna Attias (MA ATP 04) of Dante or Die and Peutêtre Theatre, and David Rosenberg (MA ATP 98) of Shunt and Requardt & Rosenberg, who took the time to share their experiences and also gave an insight into sustaining work in the current climate.

The Teaching class of 1972 (photos courtesy of Jan Randall)

TEACHER 1972 REUNION Jan Randall, née Scholer (T 72) tells us of the recent reunion for Teaching class of 1972. “On a blissfully sunny Saturday in May, 12 of the remaining 20 from T 72 (with apologies from another four due to family commitments) met in a garden in Southampton to celebrate the 42nd anniversary of finishing our course. The prize for the greatest distance travelled to reach this gathering went to Clare Lincoln, who had come from Melbourne, Australia, followed by Sue and Martin Stephenson from Spain. There was much

laughter and reminiscing late into the early hours of the morning, our voices lubricated with bottles of bubbly! The T 72 cake was consumed the next morning after a leisurely breakfast in the garden. We have been meeting up irregularly since 1991, but the feeling is that we might make it every couple of years from now on. So if there are any T 72s who feel inspired to swell the numbers, then please contact the Alumni Office at, who will put you in touch with us. Until next time...!”

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

The evening was part of a pilot networking series created in collaboration with Central Connects, to offer graduates knowledge and expertise, whilst giving them an opportunity to network and collaborate. Ben Gallacher, Business & Enterprise Manager for Central Connects said, “It’s easy to feel pigeon-holed and isolated once your drama school experience comes to a close. What the Alumni Office in partnership with Central Connects is endeavouring to do is to provide Central’s alumni with an opportunity to build networks, gain unique insights and diversify skills and experiences for a fast moving, multi-arts community. We want to facilitate the creative collaborations that can form when artistic people come together. These networking evenings bring producers, creatives, actors, writers, directors, theatre visionaries together and challenge them to connect and learn from each other.”

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Research at Central We are pleased to announce new awards from CreativeWorks London and the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC), which are researching cultural value in performing arts. > Celebrating Success is a collaboration with Clean Break, a theatre and education company dedicated to women who have encountered the criminal justice system, and is led by our Senior Lecturer in Applied Theatre, Selina Busby. The project touches on the infrastructural support for women in the Arts by examining audience responses and the wider impact of creative work as well as success stories, in some cases re-performing archives of previous work for new audiences.

Photo by Jemima Yong

> Dr. Catherine McNamara, Pro-Dean (Students) has established a research partnership with Theatre Peckham to support the development of a new post 16 course for local young people in and around Southwark. The programme will examine the experiences of young people currently engaged with theatre, local schools and arts organisations, with a view to better understanding what it is that young people value when they engage in drama, theatre and performance. Central Connects’ Student Ambassadors, including Martins Imhangbe (BA A 13) and Shinade Haughton (BA DATE 14), will deliver the workshops.

> Our AHRC Creative Fellow, Nenagh Watson, embarks on a new Researcherin-Residence placement with The Puppet Barge in Little Venice in a project called Out of the Shoebox. The collaboration will research the historical and contemporary relevance of an extraordinary private puppet collection once owned by Edward Gordon Craig. Nenagh’s work will aim to discover the story behind the marionette, bringing these exclusive archival puppets to life in both a digital and performative context to build audiences on a popular canal and tourist walkway. > Why do people go to the theatre? What is valuable to them about what they find there? Dr Joshua Edelmen and Dr Tony Fisher are undertaking a large-scale study of theatre audiences in Newcastle, Gateshead and Tyneside to research these questions as part of the AHRCs Cultural Value Project. The programme involves surveying audience members from across subsidized, commercial and amateur theatre to better understand the impact these different sorts of performance have on people’s lives.


The invited panel of speakers touched on many of the hot topics of the moment, including the opportunities and barriers between getting the first play on stage, to developing and sustaining creative relationships with theatres, directors and publishers. Cheryl Robson from Aurora Press emphasised the importance of hearing “the voices of women playwrights from around the UK, not just those who are writing plays which appeal to the London set.” She went on to say, “As most ticket buyers are female, it is time that commissioners and theatre programmers aimed for 50% of the repertoire to be made

up of plays by women. If they don’t know enough women playwrights, this anthology is a good place to start.” Raising and maintaining a high profile for women in theatre and identifying sustainable role models is part of the work that Lucy Kerbel (Director of Tonic Theatre) spoke about in her current project, ‘Advance’, which is working with 11 major subsidised theatres to increase the visibility and presence of women in all aspects of theatre’s creative teams. At the event we were delighted to be joined in the audience by award-winning playwright Gillian Plowman, along with Sonja Linden and Rachel Barnett, who are all contributors to Plays for Today by Women. Following the event, Gillian wrote to say “how much I enjoyed meeting so many inspiring women … [and] realise[d] how lucky I was to be there and to be a part of

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this wonderful movement of women in theatre.” Sonja Linden added, “I too went home inspired and stimulated. An excellent forum – maybe we need more of them!” For details of upcoming Research events and projects visit

Courtesy of Aurora Metro

On 4 March, as part of International Women’s Day 2014, Central hosted a evening of discussion and debate from different generations of women currently engaged with writing for theatre, to accompany the launch of Plays for Today by Women – an anthology of new writing.


Alumni Publications

Christina Gu tekunst and Joh n Gil lett

Voice into Acting Integ rat ing Sta nis lavski

DUNCAN BARRETT (MA CA 06) Men of Letters: The Post Office Heroes Who Fought the Great War The book tells the true stories of the ordinary postmen and telegraph boys who signed up to fight in the trenches, swapping their delivery rounds for life on the Western Front. It is released by AA Publishing in August and follows Duncan’s previous books The Sugar Girls and GI Brides, both of which became Sunday Times bestsellers.

WOLF CHRISTIAN (S 85) The Stage Combat Handbook This practical manual covers all elements of stage combat – armed and unarmed – which lead up to Stage Fight Performance certification. A perfect supplement to all courses, workshops and classes, the book is also the ideal aide memoire for anyone who has ever taken a class in stage combat. The book is available for all the major eReaders, including Amazon Kindle, NOOK, Kobo and Apple.

JULIAN FELICE (PGCE D 05) Mary Jane of Whitechapel Published by Eldridge Plays, Mary Jane of Whitechapel tells the story of Mary Jane Kelly, Jack the Ripper’s last victim, and won Best Play at the Gibraltar Drama Festival. It has since been performed in the UK and in the US. The story is told in an anti-naturalistic style, featuring choral and ensemble work. The play is available from

Shepperton Just when yo u thought it wa s safe to step back on the train...

vo ice

and the

ap proach

Short Stories

Steve Morley

CHRISTINA GUTEKUNST (MA VS 00) Voice into Acting – Integrating voice and the Stanislavski approach Published by Bloomsbury Methuen Drama in January, it is the first book to describe a process of full integration between acting and voice skills, and is being described as ground-breaking in its approach and research. Co-author John Gillett joined with Christina to examine how the approach of the Stanislavski acting technique can complement the training of voice in an organic way. Jan Haydn Rowles (Adv. Dip VS 91) and Edda Sharpe (MA VS 00) wrote the foreword for the book.

STEPHEN KEMBLE (MA VS 06) The Voiceover Book: Don’t Eat Toast The Voiceover Book is a concise handbook offering specialist advice on all areas of voiceover work, including commercials, narration, audio books, animation and dubbing. Co-authored by David Hodge, the book is a guide for professional actors, students and non-performers curious about the craft. Central alumni are entitled to 40% off The Voiceover Book. Simply go to oberonbooks. com/voiceover and enter the discount code ONVOICEOV.

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

STEVE MORLEY (S 77) Shepperton Steve has had a collection of short stories published on Amazon Kindle, under the title Shepperton. Previous publications include three collections of plays, two of which, The Nutting Plays and The Farmhouse Plays, were nominated for the Company of Educators’ Inspirational Educators Award.

WILLIAM RED (MA CA 11) Autumn and Honey Published in April, Autumn and Honey is an intriguing romantic autobiographical collection of stirring free-verse love poetry. The book experiments with form, exploring fragments of experienced moments to connect the poems into a unified dramatic body.

CLAIRE ELIZABETH TERRY (TECH 77) I Draw Roses I Draw Roses ( is about six friends from all over the world whose lives are transformed when a rose is secretly drawn for each of the women. A feature film of the novel is being produced by Delacheroy Films in the UK. Claire is a co-producer on the film, which is scheduled for release in 2015.

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni


Forthcoming Events Event details were correct at the time of going to print. Please check our website for full event lists, updated information and booking details.



Friday 15 August, 5:00-7:00pm Scottish Arts Club, 4 Rutland Square, Edinburgh

Did you graduate from the Teaching course in 1974? Join your classmates for your 40 year reunion, to take place at Central on 5 September. To RSVP for the event, or for further details, please contact Hazel Bradley at

Friday 5 September, 6:30-8:30pm

For the second year running, Central will return to the Scottish Arts Club for its annual drinks reception around the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. If you are visiting this year, or taking part in a show, then please come along to this informal gathering to celebrate the involvement of alumni and students in the Festival. The event is free to attend but please RSVP to for catering purposes and spread the word amongst fellow alumni. For a list of Festival shows involving alumni and students visit

CLASS OF 1984 REUNION 13-14 September, times TBC A 30 year reunion for the Class of 1984 will take place this year, with a tour at Central on Saturday 13 September and further celebrations on Sunday 14 September. To receive details please contact Petrus Bertshinger at

OBITUARIES It is with great sadness that we share news of the deaths of former Central tutors, Tony Falkingham – who taught on the Stage acting course in the 70s and 80s, and Gerard Benson (T 62) – who taught voice production, diction and versespeaking, and was also an alumnus of the School. We are also saddened to announce that the following Central alumni died over the past year: Oliver Bernard (Adv. Dip SD 71); Amanda Burrows, née Hansen (MA TP 08); Timothy Byford (SM 62); Robert Cervello (PG Cert TS 12); Basil Coleman (S 36); Tony Crisp (T 76); Tom Errington (SM 63); Katherine Maria Gibbons (MA CA 06); Jean Harvey; Mike Kalemkerian (Adv. Cert SD 76); Pat Keen (S 56); Tony Marriott (S 52); Pamela Parry (MA DS 12); Amanda Pointer (S 86); Karen Royer, nee Alderson (SM 86); Susan Stern (T 73); Pamela Vandyke Price (S 46); and Jeffrey Dench (S 52).

Paying tribute to her brother, Judi Dench (S 57) said, “It was only because of Jeff being at Central that I ever even thought of being an actress. I owe him so much.” Obituaries and tributes for alumni who have passed away in the last two years can be viewed at If you know of someone who should be included on this list, please contact

For more alumni news, visit

STUDENT PUBLIC PRODUCTIONS Central’s students will present a variety of productions during the autumn term. For further details visit productions Central alumni are entitled to a 50% discount on tickets for all student productions. Please contact the Box Office on 020 7722 8183 or at to book your tickets.

POSTGRADUATE OPEN EVENT Thursday 13 November, 6:00-9:00pm Are you considering postgraduate study at Central, or know someone who is? Join us on 13 November for the chance to learn about the School’s broad range of postgraduate courses. Booking opens from September, please see for further information.

ALUMNI NEWSLETTER QUESTIONNAIRE Please tell us what you think of the Alumni Newsletter and help us to produce a publication that you can be proud of. We want to ensure that the Newsletter is the best it can possibly be and that it suits the needs of all our alumni, from recent graduates through to those more established in their careers. Please let us know your views – the good, the bad, and the ugly! You can complete the short online survey at and five lucky entries will be selected at random to win a Central bag or hoodie!


KEEP IN TOUCH… SHARE YOUR NEWS… JOIN THE CONVERSATION We also have a number of international Facebook groups, to enable those alumni overseas to stay connected with Central and each other:

Join us on Facebook Search for: CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Central Alumni – USA West Coast Central Alumni – USA East Coast Central Alumni – Australia & New Zealand CSSD Alumni – India Central Alumni – Germany CSSD Alumni – East Asia

The main aims of this group are: >T  o help you reconnect with former classmates >T  o create a place where you can share your news with the Alumni Office, tutors and fellow graduates >T  o encourage networking and collaboration amongst alumni >T  o keep you up-to-date on all the news and developments from Central, including events and job opportunities

Dutch Network – To join please contact alumnus Pieter Hofman (TP 67) at

Follow us on Twitter

Join the LinkedIn Group Connect to us on LinkedIn for all the latest employment and networking opportunities, as well as the chance to join discussions. Simply search for Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni.

The Black and Asian Alumni Network (BAAN) BAAN provides an opportunity for current students and alumni to socialise; bringing them together in a community of shared experiences. To join the group, or for further information, please contact Claudette Williams at

Share your news with the Central community and learn all the latest news from the School. Follow us @CSSDLondon

Postgraduate DEGREES at Central All graduates of Central’s full-time undergraduate courses are entitled to a 10% discount on tuition fees when they enrol for further study on one of its MA/MFA courses. Courses are offered in the areas of: > Acting > Theatre & Social Practice

> Research > Performance Innovation

> Coaching & Specialist Direction > Writing & Production

Contact for further details. Application is direct to Central

CSSD Alumni News – Official Site

Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni



Photo by Patrick Baldwin

As Central alumni, who you are and what you do is invaluable in ensuring the School’s ongoing success. Here are just some of the important things you can do to show your support. Share your news with us at and with fellow alumni on our ‘CSSD Alumni News – Official Site’ Facebook group Join our LinkedIn group ‘Central School of Speech & Drama Alumni’ to read about and share job opportunities Offer a discount to alumni via your business. See alumni-benefits Update your contact details with us at Make a donation to help secure the future of Central. See the enclosed feedback form or visit Help support our International alumni activities. See the enclosed feedback form or contact us at

contact Can We Reach You? We have over 1,500 alumni contacts with no registered email address. Help us to keep costs down by registering your email today. Please either complete and return the enclosed feedback form or drop us an email to Email: Telephone: +44 (0)20 7559 3991 Post: Alumni Office, The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, Eton Avenue, London NW3 3HY, UK Website:

Talk about Central publicly – in your biographies, CVs and in the press

This Newsletter is written for alumni using information from alumni. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the staff or the governors of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. This Newsletter is printed on environmentally friendly paper from managed sustainable forests. The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama is registered as a Company Limited by Guarantee, with exempt charitable status, in England and Wales under Company No. 203645. Its registered office is as above. VAT No. GB 135 6002 46.

Alumni Newsletter July 2014  
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