Exeter School is proud to announce that three pupils have been offered membership to the National Youth Theatre.
Upper Fifth Former (Year 11) pupil Harriet Bridgwater and Lower Sixth (Year 12) pupils Stephanie Seedhouse and Emma Bates have all been offered places with the sought after theatre company.
Every year over 6,000 young people audition for places which are limited to between 600-700.
This year, for the first time, Exeter School hosted a day of workshops and individual auditions, arranged by Head of Drama James Brough.
He said it was a huge achievement for the three pupils.
“The National Youth Theatre is incredibly prestigious within the industry and its alumni include Dame Helen Mirren, Daniel Craig, Sir Daniel Day-Lewis, Rosamund Pike, Sir Ben Kingsley, Sir Derek Jacobi, Matt Lucas, Matt Smith, Catherine Tate, Orlando Bloom to name but a few and it can quite literally launch careers.
“As one of its patrons, Sir Ian McKellen, says: ‘The NYT REP company is as good a way into the business of acting as any drama school’. And as Matt Smith says: ‘The National Youth Theatre is the reason I’m an actor. It completely transformed my life, and I’m proud to be part of it still’.
“The NYT is highly competitive and therefore it is a huge achievement for Emma, Stephanie and Harriet, who join fellow Exeter School pupil Rachel Honeyball who is already a member, and we heartily congratulate them. It is a testament to the dramatic talent we have here at Exeter School.”
Sixth Former Stephanie said she was shocked and excited and couldn’t quite believe she was going to be a part of the company.
“With the help of Mr Brough, we found a monologue that I felt had a compelling role and we went through it a few times until I felt comfortable with my character. I am so grateful to him and the school for organising the NYT audition,” she said.
“I’m looking forward to auditioning for many different opportunities NYT can offer after my A Levels, but for now, I will be taking part in their online training courses and masterclasses with industry professionals.”
Year 12 pupil Emma said she was beyond happy to find out that she had a place and was so excited to get started.
“I could not have done it without the help from the school and especially Mr Brough who helped me prepare my audition monologue. I take Drama A Level and am hoping to carry on with it after school in further education. This opportunity opens many doors and contacts for the future that will undoubtedly help me improve and pave my way into this industry.”
Year 11 pupil Harriet said it was a very exciting opportunity to do drama on a national level.
“I am very thankful to the school Drama Department for giving us so many opportunities, in particular Mr Brough for helping me prepare.
“After studying Drama and performing in productions, it was comforting to audition for the NYT at Exeter School, in a familiar environment.”
The girls are now life members and will take part in a training course – via Zoom - with industry leaders and professional coaches. Once this course is complete, they will have access to all of the courses and training the company offers, as well as having the opportunity to audition for any of the productions they put on.
The NYT tends to put on about 15 productions a year, performing in theatres such as the Soho Theatre, the Criterion Theatre, the Garrick theatre, Café de Paris and the Southwark Playhouse. When members are 18 they can audition for the NYT REP company which tours shows nationally and internationally.