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Where do I start? - Abi's Work Experience Week

Where do I start? My name is Abi Johns and I am a third year ‘BA Theatr a drama’ student studying at the University of South Wales. When being told to choose any place to do my work experience I knew that Theatr na nÓg would be perfect for me as I have an intrest in performance, history and working with children and the company allowed me to explore all these elements and I was fortunate to have had such a positive and eye opening experience into the industry. Firstly I was greeted by such a lovely lady called Daisy who showed me around and explained the ‘behind the scenes’ elements to the company. She explained all the differents positions in the company and I was facsinated by it all! From then I sat in on the rehersals for ‘Y Bluen Wen’ where I was given the experience to voice my opinions on what I had just seen. I was really made to feel so welcome by the entire cast, crew and director. I was amazed in such a short amount of time what they had achieved especially as the cast consisted of a welsh learner, who learnt the whole welsh script in under a week and delievered a flawless performance. I left my first day of work experience so excited.

The rest of my work experience contiuned to be such a positive one. Daisy really made sure I got the most out of the oppourtunity and therefore I was involved in the behind the scenes process of technical lighting / sound / props and costume changes. I learnt something new everyday and it’s inspired me to want to learn more about the backstage roles. The cast memebers were also so lovely in the way they treated me and allowed me to sit in on their warm up sessions, speed readings and even have lunch with them. It was all so eye opening speaking to people in the industry and the advice they gave. I also was given the oppourtunity to shadow Laura, one of the Stage Managers (looking after lighting and sound), and WOW! I really didn’t realise all the presure I felt when sitting up on the sound desk where one wrong push of a button could effect the whole show. It made me have a new appricated for the position. Laura kindly talked through the process and I have learnt so much from her. I also shadowed Kirstie, also Stage Managing (looking after props and costumes) where I really was amazed by the fast pace with everything behind the scenes. Once again Kirstie really explained the whole process to me and by the end I really felt I had a good grasp on what to do. Laura and Kirstie were so amazing and was there to help with anything I could, I loved re-setting the stage for the next performance and having the oppourtunity to really feel part of such an amazing team. Team is an important word when describing my experience with Theatr na nÓg as I constantly saw the team work between everyone.

Diolch ENFAWR to Theatr na nÓg for allowing me to have a hands on experience in the industry. Daisy also offered me the choice to be involved with ambassador work, I obvisouly was very intrested in doing it as I wanted all the experience possible. I dressed up as a Suffragette and helped guide the children from one location to the other, it was such a fun experience. The Company really has made learning for children so much fun and so engaging. I was asked so many questions and so were the actors after every performance by the children which was lovely to witness. I really feel so fortunate to have been able to experience as much as I have and especially with a company that plays such an inspiring role in so many young childrens lives. Needless to say I’m very excited to re-visit in January and continue to learn from such a wonderful company.

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