Participating Project

Project information

The ARDENT8 Project

ARDENT8 is a career development programme for emerging actors from outside of London who face barriers to pursuing their career due to financial hardship. Following a series of industry-led workshops our ensemble of 8 young actors will perform in a London theatre venue for 2-4 weeks.

5-7 weeks

Charity information: Ardent Theatre Company

Ardent Theatre Company logo
  • Need

    Need

    For the majority of new actors, the route into the acting industry is through several years of low or unpaid. Unlike many other professions, the expectation to work for nothing in a competitive industry is the norm, and yet is often the only way to build experience, contacts and a CV. For those in areas where they simply cannot afford to commute to London to attend auditions & take unpaid work, or pay for accommodation & food, the drop out rate within the first 2 years is disproportionately high

    Solution

    This project goes some way to rebalancing this inequality by giving working class actors from outside London support in achieving their professional aspirations and addressing their identified barriers to entering the industry. Through 11 workshops and a professional production the project offers a showcase, a CV credit, confidence and endorsement of their abilities, and their first experience of paid employment as actors.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Increase confidence, knowledge and understanding of being a professional actor.

    Activities

    » 1 workshop focused on the business side of being an actor - registering as self employed, Equity contracts, applying for work, audition technique etc
    » 2 weeks rehearsal and a 1 week run of a professional production in a central London venue

    Participants will carry out self evaluation at the start and end of the project, and after each workshop to measure development and improvement.


    Aim 2

    Improve practical acting skills

    Activities

    » 10 workshops with professional directors and tutors.
    » 2 weeks rehearsal and a 1 week run of a professional production in a central London venue

    Participants will carry out self evaluation at the start and end of the project, and after each workshop. Positive feedback from audiences, peers and press on acting quality.


    Aim 3

    Increase chances for professional acting employment.

    Activities

    » 1 week run of a professional production that showcases their abilities.

    Participants gain increased auditions and/or employment opportunities as a direct result of this project, measured through post-project contact with group and career tracking.


    Aim 4

    Introduce the ensemble to a London-based support network made up of industry professionals

    Activities

    » Ongoing one-to-one career mentoring and information sharing of network events and other opportunities.

    The ensemble have maintained contact with peers and industry professionals they have met through the project and demonstrate support offered through post-project contact.


  • Impact

    Impact

    This project goes some way to rebalancing this inequality by giving working class actors from outside London support in achieving their professional aspirations and addressing their identified barriers to entering the industry. This will be demonstrated by the group being able to pursue the career they have trained for and the barriers they previously faced have been lessened. We can’t guarantee they will all succeed; but we can create the best possible conditions in which they can at least try.

    Risk

    There is a risk that we are unable to secure the full funds needed. This risk is mitigated by a wide ranging funding action plan - donations, grant applications, match funding programmes - with a portion of funds already in place. There is a risk that audience turn out is low. For this we will employ a skilled marketing and press officer and implement an Audience Development strategy that targets specific identified interested groups.

    Reporting

    Donors will invited to the performance so they have first hand experience of the project. We will maintain regular updates via email and share an end of project report that collates feedback and evaluation. We will also share links to online photos, video, social media posts etc.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £8,738

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £8,738 Production Rehearsal Towards room hire and actors costs to hold 1 week rehearsal and 1 week performance
  • Background

    Location

    The ARDENT8 is made up of 8 graduates from the BA Honours Degree programme in Performing Arts at the Bournemouth & Poole College. They graduated within the past 24 months and were selected on the grounds of their ability as well as their personal circumstances. The project will take place in Central London to act as a bridge between the outer region and this capital city where there is high arts provision and opportunity.

    Beneficiaries

    8 young actors aged between 18-24 from outside London, who have since given up any hope of pursuing a career in the sector and 500-600 audience members who attend the production.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The company was set up by Mark Sands and Andrew Muir who have over 25 years experience working in theatre and have firsthand experience of the barriers faced by the ARDENT8 having made the transition from the regions to London. In 2016, we ran a very successful 3 month pilot project and carry that learning forward into this project. Our skill set is broad covering directing, producing, writing, dramaturgy, finance with a 5 star track record behind us of producing theatre.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.

    People

    Andrew Muir

    Andrew will direct the production and jointly manage the 11 workshops.

    Mark Sands

    Mark will produce the production and jointly manage the 11 workshops.

SACRIFICE by Andrew Muir