Laura Lonsdale

Laura Lonsdale

List your course(s) undertaken here at SRC (previously SBC/SBT).
BTEC in Performing Arts

When were you a student here at SRC?
1997 – 1999

What do you remember from your time here at SRC?
I remember feeling this is where I belonged. Being creative and not very academic at school, I was desperate to work with like-minded people. Each morning I was more than happy to get two buses to college, I genuinely adored every minute of it, even when we were ridiculously tired after rehearsing long hours and performing two shows a day. However this did help me once I hit the real world of the performing arts industry, being able to maintain the unethical hours you have to put in. Or when I was getting told off for talking too much, I just loved it and would do it again in a heartbeat!

What shows were you in and what parts did you play?
I played a munchkin in The Wizard of Oz, Mrs Danforth and Putnam in The Crucible and one of the brothers in Joseph and The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.
I never really had a lead role at college but it wasn’t about the part, although at the time it may have been, just being part of the production and the magic of it all was good enough for me. There are no small parts only small actors, I think the saying is.
To be honest, I knew acting was my strength and I understood the parts I wanted to play – it was just a case of doing it.

Where else have you studied after your time at SRC?
ALRA – The Academy of Live and Recorded Arts – This was the next step for me, really honing my skills and discovering my capabilities. Discovering the world of agents and casting directors, which still terrifies me today!

What was your first professional job and where?
My first professional job was in a play called Studs at Hull Truck Theatre, which then went on tour around the UK. I finished at ALRA in the May 2002, got my agent – who I am still with today – in my third year showcase, auditioned for Studs in the August 2002 and went off on tour in the September 2002. 2002 was a great year!

Where else have you undertaken roles within the performing arts industry?
Television Credits
Sandra, DALZIEL AND PASCOE, BBC Television, Alan Grint
Barbara, MRS DAVID, Wall to Wall for BBC, James Kent
Sara (Regular), ROCKET MAN, Coastal/ Touchpaper/ BBC, Jon East
Tracy, BODIES, Hat Trick Productions, Sally Aprahamian
Nancy, EUSTACE BROTHERS, BBC Television, Paul Harrison
Denise, THE ROYAL, Yorkshire Television, Adriene Bean

Theatre Credits
Sheila, THE SHY GAS MAN, Southwark Playhouse, Garry Cooper
Maxine, LIKE A VIRGIN, TABS, Carole Copland
Mandy, STUDS, ARC, Gordon Steele
Mandy, STUDS, Hull Truck Productions, Gareth Turdor Price
Sandra, BEAUTIFUL THING, less is MORE productions, David Tuffnell
Sarah, YOUR HOME IN THE WEST, less is MORE productions, David Tuffnell
Helen Stott, A NIGHTINGALE SANG, less is MORE productions, Thomas Guest
Jackie, WAITING FOR GATEAUX, lON productions, Gareth Hunter
Carol, SHAKERS, less is MORE productions, Thomas Guest
In September I will be playing Rita in Educating Rita at Customs House, I role have dreamed about playing for years. I can’t wait!

Are you involved with any other performing arts organisations, and where?
I currently run three performing arts academies and in October we will be opening a fourth. When I wasn’t acting, I wanted to do something creative and working with the next generation of performers was a great way of doing this. To be honest, I got sick of seeing young people and their families being ripped off, not receiving a solid training and not having the correct safeguarding checks, which was one of the reasons I went into partnership with The Pauline Quirke Academy. The kids keep me on my toes and more often or not teach me a thing or two! It gives you such a sense of achievement when you see them develop their skills and some of them have even been lucky enough to win awards at a film festival, I have high hopes for them.
Another ex-SRC student and I run a theatre company called less is MORE productions. We have been running it for five years now and the company is going from strength to strength. When we started out it was one show a year and now we produce three shows a year, with a new writing festival alongside too. Over the summer we will be dabbling for the first time in children’s theatre, writing and creating a new piece of children’s theatre based on the Lambton worm.

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