Drama work encourages Concentration, Communication skills, Acceptance, Cooperation, Trust, Responsibility and Team work.
This is a picture of me. I started Creative Acting Classes for Kids (CACK) in 2015, as a way to get Primary School children learning 'real' drama-that of Improvisation, Devising, Clowning, Mask, Mumming, Street Theatre and Characterisation.
I first fell in love with performing at the age of 8, as a Siamese Princess in 'The King and I' with Tempo Theatre in Canberra. I joined a popular childrens Amateur Theatre groups, Alpha Theatre and slowly developed my skills from chorus work to lead parts. During this time, I lead many drama workshops for children and attended many as a participant with other companies.
I also enjoyed singing in choirs and was lucky enough to be accepted in the Woden Valley Youth Choir, that performed on many occasions, most notibly The World Athletics Cup in 1985.
I worked hard during my high school years, and achieved a High Distinction in a double major for drama. I was lucky enough to score lead roles in both the Drama and Musical productions in year 10, year 11 and 2 in year 12! I directed and produced "Launching the Gurgleburger", which was performed at the launch of ACT Health week. It was in this year, 1990, that i recieved a certificate of recognition for my Contribution to Drama and Productions.
I then auditioned for a University Course at Charles Sturt University, which was a Bachelor of Arts-Communications, specialising in Theatre/Media. Out of the 5000 people who showed initial interest in this course, I was one of just 25 to be accepted. During Bathursts Hot summers and very cold winters, in my final year, I was co-founder of a street theatre company, "Disarmed and Dangerous". We performed comedic/political theatre for International Womens Day, Free Education rallys, Lunchtime performances, Sexual Assault Awareness forums, opening of Student Services week and much much more.
It was also in this year, that i taught weekly Drama and Speech classes at Wattle Flat Public School.
Free from university, we continued producing shows and had the opportunity to perform at both the Sydney and Adelaide Fringe Festivals as Red Roar Creative, as well as tour a show to secondary schools in Sydney.
I have worked on film sets for such films as "Two Hands", "Praise" and "Strange Planet".
It was whilst performing in a Cabaret with Red Roar, that i first fell in love with the powerful voice and amazing stage presence of our tutor, Craig Vance.
I moved onto disabilty work after that, managing respite/recreation groups, taking Craig with me. Our unique working partnership encouraged our professional best, and made it much more fun!
I left this work to become a parent but never lost my passion for the theatre. Whilst a school mum, i heard other speak of dancing and video production groups that were both competitive, hard to get into and expensive. I wondered what had happened to the joy of making theatre accessible to everyone.
Real drama should be creative, inexpensive and fun.
I look at all the skills drama has taught me in my life-communication skills, ability to relate to a wide variety of people, quick thinking,acceptance, to laugh, an awareness of physicality and team work. I'd like my kids to grow up with these skills and i know they would benefit any open minded child as they grow into adulthood.
A keen genealgist, I am currently writting a novel about my Uncle, Harry Valentine.
I first realised my flair for the dramatic very early on in life, enroling in drama classes at the age of 6. Over the ensuing years I have been fortunate enough to enjoy success both on and off the stage. After graduating from The Centre of Artistic Development (Queensland) in 1988, I joined Brisbane based Pyramid Playhouse as a drama teacher/director, devising workshops, scripts and performances for young people. It was also at Pyramid Playhouse that I gained valuable experience in working with preschool children whilst performing in a very successful series of educational programs that toured Queeensland and Northern New South Wales. In 1999 I was invited by Red Roar Creative (Sydney) to appear in their production of "Raunch", an orginal play devised for Belvoir St Theatre's " Company B" program. This fantastic opportunity led to many more, and before long I found myself singing at the opening of the 2000 Sydney Festival and appearing in many of the wonderful perfomance spaces that Sydney enjoys, including Belvoir St Theatre, The Seymour Centre and The Sydney Opera House. Importantly, it was around this time that I first got to meet and work with the fabulous Kate Carey......you know Kate, you just met her...... above me. Kate and I quickly discovered we worked well together and used our training in drama to devise and implement holiday programs for children and young adults living with a disability. In 2004 I was invited to perform in Melbourne for the Midsummer Festival infront of 10,000 people at Ferderation Square, whilst also securing a job with Dolly Productions as a DJ/Emcee for corporate and private functions. I have thoroughly and equally enjoyed the many opportunities afforded me in my professional career, whether it be appearing on stage, facilitating young people to realise their dream of a career in performing arts, or just as importantly, nurturing the social skills required to build a happy and healhty life, none of this would have been fully realised without the skills I first began nurturing as that shy 6 year old boy. I am delighted to be returning to Sydney to join Kate and Creative Acting Classes for Kids (CACK) and am looking forward to meeting you all.