23 Nov 2009
Southbank Centre and E4 Udderbelly launched The Training Academy, as part of their Summer Season beside the Thames.
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Earlier this year, Southbank Centre and E4 Udderbelly launched The Training Academy, as part of their first Summer Season beside the Thames. The initiative brought together 20 young people from South London for ten weeks of learning about arts event management. Putting their newly acquired skills into practice, the group then organised a production at the E4 Udderbelly venue ñ a massive upside-down purple cow.
Young people between the ages of 16 and 20 were interviewed for a place on the course. One successful applicant, Kristian Revelle, explained: ‘The training covered many aspects of running a venue, from sound and lights, to stage management, front of house and programming. It gave everyone the opportunity to take a hands-on approach.’
Six participants secured work placements at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. ‘The atmosphere was great and I enjoyed being around new people,’ said Kristian. ‘I learnt a lot more about what goes on behind the scenes and the work that is put in by so many staff.’
Roberta Akpan, a facilitator on the project, commented: ‘It’s an eye opener. The arts field is broad and it can be hard to know what will interest you. It’s good for young people to see all the different aspects involved and find out how others got there.’
The Training Academy has already opened up job opportunities for young people. Jamilah Hamilton-Yates, 17, who participated on the course, has recently been employed by Southbank Centre. ‘Working with Udderbelly was inspiring and it made me realise which line of work I wanted to go into,’ she said. ‘Without that experience, I doubt I would have got the job at Southbank Centre. I’m very proud of myself, as I’m now working in a great environment with brilliant people.’
The Training Academy participants
Photos: © Udderbelly/Southbank Centre
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