The Acting Class + Q&A

"'A groundbreaking and passionately argued documentary' ★★★★ The Morning Star

Showing Times

The first time Tom Stocks, a young man from Bolton, got an offer at drama school he deferred the place for a year to work and save up.  Even so, and with his parent's best help, he was still unable to cover fees + expenses.  Recognising many others from diverse backgrounds are similarly penalised, he started a campaign, 'Actor Awareness', to highlight socio-economic exclusion in the Arts.

 Who gets to be on our stages and screens matters to all of us; whose stories get told, what images we have of ourselves, who we think ‘we’ are, helps shape our identities.  With so many actors today from well-off backgrounds, benefiting greatly from the-bank-of-mum-and-dad, people are concerned at the implications for the profession. Christopher Eccleston, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Maxine Peake and Samuel West talk about their experiences starting out, and how different it is today.  

We are delighted to have the opportunity to discuss some of the issues afterwards with actor Samuel West and the film's directors, Deirdre O'Neill and Mike Wayne.  Samuel has starred in films such as Howard’s End, Van Helsing and Suffragette, and he has played Richard II and Hamlet at the RSC.  He is also Chair of the National Campaign for the Arts.  Deirdre and Mike are both film educators and writers.


Film Information

77 mins

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