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What were you doing before you came to LAMDA?
I did a four-year BFA in Acting at New York University, where I’m from, and then moved to LA where I spent four years living and working. Looking back now, I realise how much I didn’t know when I was doing my BFA. I definitely didn’t understand what the career path of being an actor meant. I didn’t appreciate how proactive you have to be now about creating work and finding opportunities rather than waiting for things to come to you. You have make a career happen. I also didn’t have a huge range of life experiences to draw on in my work at that stage, that all came later after I moved to LA.
Why did you decide to apply to LAMDA?
After four years in LA I still hadn’t been deterred from acting – I knew it was the career for me and I knew that I needed more training. To train as an actor at grad school in the US is two year commitment minimum, mostly three year. Because I had done my undergrad degree in acting and been working in the industry for a few years already, I had a very clear idea of what I needed to get out of a postgrad and I knew I would be able to get it from a concentrated programme like this, which is only one year. And I knew that I wanted to focus on stage training rather than screen. If you’re trying to break into theatre in somewhere like New York, having an MA on your CV matters.
Also, the fact that LAMDA audition in the US is hugely helpful.
How would you describe the training at LAMDA?
Eclectic! The tutors here throw so many different avenues and techniques at you to help you find characters. There’s no sense of there being one ‘right’ way to do something – they give you all the tools and methods you need to find your own way to the core of a character. It gives you a much better chance of finding the tools that work for you, instead of trying to adapt yourself to the tools. Coming out of this course you are ready to hit the ground running and able to do the work that you need to do, on your own, to go to castings and auditions and really represent yourself well.
What’s the best thing about studying at LAMDA?
The tutors at LAMDA are as committed and as involved as the students. They give you huge amounts of time and are always on hand to help you work through problems. And I mean really work through problems, not just skim the surface but talk things through with you and help you out the other side. You feel very taken care of. There is so much support available that a student should never feel lost or alone here.
What excites you the most about LAMDA's new training centre?
There’s a lot more of a sense of community among the students now and more interaction between the different year groups. There’s always rehearsal space free too if you need it and you can always find a room to yourself before class or at the end of the day to do your own work.
Describe your time at LAMDA in three words.
Busy. Intense. Effective.
Jordan graduated in 2017.