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FdA in Technical Theatre and Stage Management and BA (Hons) progression, 2021

I first learnt about RADA when I was talking to my secondary school drama teacher about career options in technical theatre. I hadn’t really appreciated before those conversations that there was a viable career to be made doing this work. I decided I wanted a career in technical theatre around age 16 and at that point, I’d been involved in theatre production for almost five years and I thought: ‘why not make a living doing what I love?’

I was nervous throughout the application process but that meant, when the acceptance letter did come, I was over the moon. Knowing I had secured a place took off some of the pressure for the rest of my A-Level studies, allowing me to engage with them fully while knowing that my place at university was not reliant on them.

The rotations in my first year at RADA were great, giving a practical grounding in all areas of production while the more academic aspects such as theatre history really gave a deeper understanding and context to the industry in which I work. For me, the training came into its own in the second year and through the third BA (Hons) progression year where I was able to specialise, set my own agenda and hone my skills.

In terms of support I received while studying, I received a bursary to help towards living costs and was eligible for free lunches at the refectory. The lunches were always well balanced and meant I always had a hot meal each day.

I love working in theatre and production arts, no two days are ever the same. For me, the pace of the work is always fast which feels rewarding and it’s amazing to be able to put my name to world-leading productions. If I had any advice to applicants, I would say: be prepared to work hard, be open to criticism and always take pride in your practice. You’re only as good as your last job!

Luke MacBride