Heads up, this is like the longest blog ever, sorry. Feeling particularly descriptive today. Enjoy.
Drama Centre *cough* trauma centre… wait, who said that?
This was such a tiring day oh.my.days. I feel sleepy just thinking about it. Drama Centre is part of the University of the Arts London (UAL) / Central Saint Martins – still figuring it all out, but BASICALLY Drama Centre is a very classical and accredited drama school in the UK. (Also, nice scrumptious fact, a lot of the RADA tutors teach here 😉 including the course director, who was the course director at RADA a few years ago before Ed Kemp.) Interesting stuff, I know.
Anyway, the audition day consists of 3 stages which you have to pass to get to the next, and then after that day there is another final recall day – so it’s a lengthy and rigorous process. First of all, UAL is absolutely massive and kind of intimidating if you ask me. I found it a bit overwhelming to be honest, but I found and made my way to the reception (which was a task in itself!!) so definitely google search this place before you audition.
Much to my luck, I was the first applicant to be seen out of the 50-60 people there, or maybe more, who knows. No pressure ey. So my name was called by the student and I walked into a medium sized, well lit room with a smiling panel of two; one middle aged woman and man. (Much like LAMDA and RADA panels.) I performed my two pieces and I thought they went alright and then I sat down for a brief chat. They asked me what I had been doing lately, asked me about the theatre I had done, and finally asked ‘why acting.’ I really dislike the question ‘why acting.’ I can never find the right words. When I do, I try to express it in some form of understandable language and then it just comes out as this cheesy, mushy and gushy line of bullshit. Okay, I have just ventilated out some drama school anger. I like writing this blog.
Back to the audition. So, remember me telling you how tired I was? Yeah, I had a beautiful 3 hour wait till the first dreaded list was put up. Fabulous, I thought. Note my sarcasm. Now you would think sitting is pretty much the laziest way to spend 3 hours, but trust me, it was 3 hours of major worrying over that bloody list! So my advice for anyone auditioning for Drama Centre is just get out of there and don’t look at ALL of the other auditionees going and coming out of the panels for 3 hours. Not healthy.
Finally, after the terrible wait one of the grads came over to the swarm of auditionees, clutching a clipboard with one of those expressions ‘ah, better luck next time.’ To my surprise, the guy was very genuine and real in his rejection speech to us all. He congratulated everyone for just having the balls to audition and I don’t know what it was but I got a real authentic vibe from him. Eventhough he only had 12 names on that list and that he fully well knew that 75% were about to be rejected, he was really nice about it. So props to him I guess.
Everyone always runs up to the lists at drama school auditions. I don’t like it. Freaks me out and I ahhh there’s something really cruel about lists but nobody likes rejection. Anyways, so I waited a bit and slowly made my way to the list. No… it can’t be… Did I just see? Yep, there it was, at the top. My name and my shakespeare piece they wanted to see.
And do you know what I thought? I’ve got bloody MORE waiting to do!!
(But I was secretly happy and relieved… Being recalled to the second round was a good feeling but I only had 30 mins for lunch and then I was first in again. Woo.)
The Second Round. Different Panel. Someone famous and I won’t say who because I don’t want anyone figuring out who I am from this blog (being anonymous and all :P) because I literally freaked OUT in front of all the other auditonees when I saw this guy. I was just so happy he was on my panel and I got to perform my shakey to him!! The second round was basically to see if you could reinvent your speech. I did mine a couple of different ways and it was fun, I really enjoyed playing around with my speech. Then they did the interview bit again and asked me again about my gap year, why drama centre and where this all started. I left the room feeling happy, even if I wasn’t recalled, I felt like I did my best.
And then… you’ve guessed it… more waiting… so I’ll skip to the list for your reading pleasure.
I got my things together and made my way to the list… honestly, it’s so dramatic walking up to that list. There it was again, oh my gosh, I got through to the third round. What?!
The Third Round was a workshop in front of a whole line of panellists and students from the school. We started with walking round the space at different speeds and just did improv exercises and games whilst the line of panellists made notes. Then we did this slow mo running exercise and then that was it. A younger lady, who must have been on another panel, told us that we would receive an email to say no thanks/ recall for another course/ or final recall day. I’m not sure to be honest if I’m going to get a final recall, I don’t know whether I stood out enough in the final workshop, but we will have to wait and see.
This has been a long blog,
Next up isn’t drama school but NYT which stands for the National Youth Theatre x
BTW Question to all of you readers – does anybody know what happens in the recall session at LAMDA? (And note, not the second first round but the recall day.) If anyone knows anything please do leave a comment or link another blog that explains because I can’t find anything!! Thank you!