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Stage Antics: bringing performing arts back to young people

Winterson’s Lead Agent, Niki Winterson, has been named as one of the Patrons of Stage Antics: an organisation that aims to bring performing arts to young people outside of a traditional classroom setting. 

Stage Antics, based in Kent, has been operating since 2005 and recently opened up a new school in London. Teaching children aged 5-18, acting and dancing classes are taught by industry professionals from a range of entertainment backgrounds, and unlike the majority of stage schools participants are not required to sign up to entire courses, paying instead for classes on a weekly basis.

“The lack of drama facility in UK schools is something we are going to have to address as an industry if we want to access the most talented of future generations,” said Niki. “Stage Antics is run by actors and takes a non-corporate view of the kids it interacts with – it offers bursaries and allows a week-by-week option for classes which many of the larger Saturday classes do not. The tuition is consistently high and they take a holistic view of the kids- not turning out ‘stage school clones’.”

“It’s the first time I’ve agreed to be a patron of an organisation. I love South East London with it’s great cultural identity and its been my home for thirty years. I strongly believe in this project and I’m hoping that it flourishes not only so that I can keep an eye on the young talent but because I believe that drama provides a life skill which helps in all areas of a young person’s development.”

One of the key driving forces behind the organisation is the belief that the skills attained by pupils who study the performing arts not only increase their self confidence and social skills, but can also benefit their academic work too. While Stage Antics has trained people that have gone onto take high profile roles including in Westend productions, it is also dedicated to provide an accessible route to performing arts, which is becoming increasingly marginalised in schools.

For more information on Stage Antics simply visit their website here.