All stories by Susan Elkin on BroadwayStars

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

How to fill out the perfect UCAS application for a drama course by Susan Elkin

As the deadline for UCAS applications approaches, Susan Elkin speaks to the tutors who will be receiving them to find out what

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Monday, December 10, 2018

Christmas shows and all who sail in them by Susan Elkin

This year, for the first time in decades, I decided that I’d choose my own Christmas shows and arrange to review them rather than waiting for editors to impose them on me. And I’m having…

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Monday, December 3, 2018

An open letter to Joanna Lumley – about lavatories by Susan Elkin

Joanna Lumley, given all your aforementioned useful qualities, you could get attention from lots of influential blokes and get this thing off the ground in a way that I can’t. How about a …

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Monday, November 26, 2018

Learning about the craft of theatre by Susan Elkin

Theatrecraft, the annual careers fair, which I attended last week, is doing a fine job by getting around a thousand young people through the door every time.

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Monday, November 19, 2018

‘The idea is to find people with real potential’: Accessible vocational training at Lyric Hammersmith by Susan Elkin

It isn’t every day I stumble across a strong new vocational training opportunity which is almost free to the participants. I refer to the Lyric Ensemble which piloted in the 2017/18 academ…

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Tuesday, November 13, 2018

What are T levels and what will they mean for theatre? by Susan Elkin

New two-year technical programmes are planned to equip young people for employment. Susan Elkin gauges opinion on how the courses will work,

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Monday, November 12, 2018

BOOK REVIEW: Practical advice on auditions, sound, light & precarity by Susan Elkin

Three new practical how-to books have landed on my desk along with one rather more academic title.

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Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Surprises that derive from the spice of life by Susan Elkin

I think variety is the best thing about my life and work. In the last two weeks, I’ve seen a children’s show at Chichester, amateur takes on Our Country’s Good and Follies, three youth…

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Monday, October 29, 2018

‘If it’s show “business” then we need to be more businesslike’: Audiences deserve punctuality by Susan Elkin

Every effort should be made for every show to start on time. Shows run late far too often and I reckon that’s usually avoidable.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Rule-bound schools are hard to work in by Susan Elkin

I used to love visiting schools. Having taught for many years in secondary schools myself and visited, in various capacities, literally hundreds since I became first a part-time and then a f…

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How important are drama school buildings? by Susan Elkin

As a number of institutions get set to unveil state-of-the-art facilities, Susan Elkin speaks to school principals about the value of well-appointed

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Can the National Student Survey help you pick your drama training? by Susan Elkin

Ranking institutions according to levels of student satisfaction, the annual survey often appears to exclude high-performing drama schools. Teaching staff from around

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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

There’s nothing passive about these LIPA grads – aka Lago Theatre Company by Susan Elkin

Lago Theatre Company is a fine example of how theatrical entrepreneurialism – aka “making your own work” – can work, and work well for new or newish graduate actors.

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Sunday, September 30, 2018

How to enjoy a night at the theatre – or maybe not… by Susan Elkin

So that journalistically useful wo/man from Mars arrives in Britain in 2018 and decides to go to theatre but needs a few tips. Here’s the deal.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018

‘This new development has the potential to change many lives’: A new view for Mountview by Susan Elkin

Last week I was lucky enough to get a sneak preview of Mountview’s jaw-dropping new £28m building in Peckham – just 48 hours before Mountview management were granted full possession and…

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Saturday, September 22, 2018

Sizing up the casting issues by Susan Elkin

You are not supposed in 2018 – George Orwell’s Thought Police have certainly arrived – to notice or comment on the body shapes of actors.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Engaging in books about Shakespeare, puppetry, Brecht & more by Susan Elkin

When the Arden Performance Edition of Othello arrived recently from Bloomsbury (Methuen Drama) the friend who was staying with me was incredulous. “Surely they don’t think you need a cop…

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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

‘If you prick us do we not bleed?’: Critics deserve to be treated with basic courtesy too by Susan Elkin

The message of course – and, thank goodness, most companies are already well aware of it – is that if you want your show reviewed, both this one and the ones you’ll produce in the futu…

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Sunday, August 19, 2018

Singing in the rain: When the British weather is all part of the fun by Susan Elkin

In the last week or so I’ve seen three outdoor shows and got soaked to the skin twice. It’s what you do in Britain – part of summer’s rich tapestry.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2018

10 tips on how UCAS clearing can help you study drama by Susan Elkin

Clearing is the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service system for matching spare places to students who need them in the few weeks

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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Pauline Quirke Academy meets Shakespeare Schools Foundation by Susan Elkin

Shakespeare’s plays really are uniquely life changing and if this collaboration between PQA and SSF means that more young people will have access to their power then that can only be a Ver…

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Friday, August 10, 2018

Have directors gone gender-blind manic? Conventional casting still has an important role too by Susan Elkin

It all feels to me a bit manic and contrived – a sort of industrial over compensation for several centuries of doing plays according to the conventions of the social period in which they w…

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Inspired by how theatre changes lives & the companies that nurture the process by Susan Elkin

Last week I revisited two examples of theatre changing the lives of young people. Everyone in this industry – and those who directly or indirectly manage funding for such organisations …

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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

‘I’ve long been puzzled about why more people aren’t making more fuss about it’: Time to ban audition fees by Susan Elkin

I’ve written about audition fees many times before and make absolutely no apology for doing so again. I shall keep relentlessly banging this drum until something changes. The post Ban a…

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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

‘I’d like to see it become an integral part of people’s lives’: In praise of the Broadway Theatre, Catford by Susan Elkin

The Broadway Theatre, Catford is a fabulous building and I’d like to see it become an integral part of people’s lives as it was for me when I was a Lewisham child.

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Monday, July 9, 2018

‘This penny-pinching decision smacks of ignorance’: We need career development loans in the performing arts by Susan Elkin

Professional and Career Development Loans were a lifeline for students like these. Now that such loans have gone many of them will simply not be able to pursue the career they want – irres…

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Tuesday, July 3, 2018

It’s good to be reminded that Shakespeare really is everyone’s playwright by Susan Elkin

Brush up your Shakespeare? Well yes, Cole Porter, I had plenty of chances to do just that last week when I attended Shakespeare performances on three consecutive evenings.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Degree courses that can push you towards a theatre career by Susan Elkin

Though university degrees offer fewer contact hours than drama schools, they can provide a firm grounding in theatre for school-leavers who are

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Monday, June 25, 2018

Books have a place in this industry & we shouldn’t lose sight of that by Susan Elkin

Last week I attended the 2018 Theatre Book Prize award ceremony. From a shortlist of five titles, Nicholas Hytner won with Balancing Acts (published by Jonathan Cape) – and the ever-engagi…

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Thursday, June 21, 2018

Pit bands deserve a resounding round of applause of their own by Susan Elkin

This is a blog in praise of pit bands – all those hardworking talented musicians who lurk mostly out of sight in orchestra pits or are hidden away behind a curtain somewhere upstage.

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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Short courses to unlock children’s creativity by Susan Elkin

Access to the arts is more vital as schools under funding pressure cut drama provision. Susan Elkin looks at the extra-curricular and

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