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meet the team

Our Colleagues are experienced in working with children and helping them find ways to develop their ideas and if a child is having difficulty, they will always try and help them first and monitor their progress across a number of weeks.   We always contact parents if we feel they are not developing.  All the staff are trained in their chosen subject but what is equally important they must love teaching and growing pupils in this wonderful craft.

 

Deborah-anne Carter

Acting

Deb CVMy Story

I tell the following because I truly believe it to be essential to the school and my teachings. The adventures I had growing up are reflected in the schools artistic growth. To be able to have grown up in two fabulous countries that speak the same language but offer different sights, sounds, smells and touch undoubtedly form and shape our school today.

I have a great interest in people and am fascinated by their history all this leading to the drama school and creating adventures every week.

Preston has been my home for some time but my original home was California, not just one place but several places and this I have my British parents Brian & Brenda to thank for being what I coin ~ ‘Conservative Boujouir Bohemians’. Their love and passion for life has definitely passed on down to my sister and I. Their great adventure and’ loving all’ was definitely a good starting point, seeing and understanding the beauty that surrounds us every day no matter how small. Off we would go into the Californian wilderness with our VW Campervan, always exploring… A Happy Hippie indeed!!! We had the biggest playground in the world, Some things admittedly we did not wish to explore or indeed experience such as the Tarantula’s own campsite, a hungry bear or the wild cat and her cubs but the familiar echo of ‘Time To Get In The Van Girls,’ was always met with an excited calmness. It was a thrill and the adventures kept coming. Our house was loaded with art books and this I feel influences the visuals that is my stamp in our drama schools productions. My parents decided to move back to England, a first for my sister and I, and this is where I started my theatre training at the gorgeous Preston Playhouse. They had a youth theatre that met once a week for 2 hours, and this is where I could meet like minded people with whom I am still great friends today. Then it was on to Mountview Theatre School in London. What a fabulous vibrant city, I was in love instantly. I then returned to America in the 80’s for 4 years and worked in T.V, Commercial & the Film Industry in Pennsylvania, as well as theatre. I was keen to work in all areas and lets just be honest folks … work. A jobbing Actress is exactly that and I was eager to learn more and through sheer minded dogged determination and guts worked in various departments, from makeup, hair, costume, production assistant to casting. They were a great few years and I equally enjoyed working behind the camera as well as in front. Then it was back to England and soon after I started ‘ little players drama school’, and this is where it gets really exciting ~ there was at that time no ‘weekend’ drama school concept. That’s right, no one was doing it, maybe down South but no one here in the North West, yes there were clubs, but not a school that offered diversity to children and teenagers that may wish to train in Acting, Singing and Dance, and around this time I was also offered work for the BBC as children’s acting coach. This not only enabled me to go back to one of my first loves filming but let me sit in the audition process and what is expected of children and teens and how to get the best out of them, besides trying to get into the minds of the directors … not easy, to give them what they wish. ‘players’ now offers technique on how to audition for theatre, t.v. and film. For more information please click on ‘audition workshops’. Recently I took a year out to work in the West End as Costume Supervisor and Company Manager. This stands the school in good stead as I could bring back ~ up to date information on what is happening out there now, keeping us informed and at the forefront.

The children would just not stop coming ~
So there we were the 23rd of May 1994 this is when the ‘little players’ started, and what a thrilling day it was.
With just £30.00 I managed to buy enough masks for Greek Theatre and flyers for advertising. So that was it, everything in place all I needed was the pupils, the anticipation, waiting to see who would come, and how many, and if indeed ~ would they come? Well they did come, no sooner had I got out of the car, when I was met by eager faces in the car park. So there it was ~ we were on our way. The masks seemed to go down well, other than the one child that was claustrophobic. 26 pupils arrived May 23rd 1994 (of whom I am still friends with today) who wanted to grow and be creative in theatre and by the end of the year we had over 100 in the school with 200 on the waiting list, of which I eventually had to close the books ~ that shows the need of a space for children to use their imaginations and play. Naturally it was thrilling to see the school grow but it was more thrilling to see these lovely little personalities come through the theatre doors each week, so keen and happy. Yes, we have pupils who are natural born show offs and those that have abilities but it is those that are quaking in their boots when they stand up to perform or read that you get such a delight when you see that they start to volunteer and their hand is up first to do the activity. To see pupils blossom and grow and enjoy speaking out ~ is probably the best thrill.
So this in our 20th year I would like to say a great big thank you to those pupils from the very first to the very present ~ thank you for enriching my life that much more. So many many glorious memories, much laughter, a little tears, tantrums, sulking, giggles and a plenty of friendships made.

Training
Mountview Theatre School
Work Experience ~
B.B.C – Children’s Acting Coach.
Actress, Casting Agent, Wardrobe Assistant, Production Assistant.
More Recent ~ Costume Supervisor & Company Manager at Trafalgar Studios, Soho Theatre and Edinbugh Festival.

Films
‘Day Of The Dead’
‘Rappin’
‘Spruce Goose’
‘My Kid Brother’

Commercials
Various including Kodak - ‘Woman carrying balloons’
Coke

T.V.
Various including Prime Suspect.
Acting Teacher- 22 years

Drama School
Proprietor of players drama school ~ 20 years

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Deborah-anne Carter

Deborah-anne Carter

Acting

Lucy McHale

Singing

My journey with Players started many years ago when I myself was a pupil from thirteen to sixteen. I then went on to study performing arts at Leeds College of Music. After graduating with Distinction, it was time to take a break! I took a gap year and travelled around Australia. I embarked on many a challenge and visited some breathtaking places, a great life experience!

I then went on to study Popular and Classical music at the University of Liverpool. It was here that I returned to Players to teach singing to both the children and teenagers. Players has inspired me to pass on my knowledge and enthusiasm to everyone who comes through our doors. After graduating with a 2:1, teaching became my passion alongside performing and juggling my role as a doting parent! My experiences both in my professional and personal life enables me to teach from the mind but also from the heart. A caring and informative approach means that the pupils of Players learn how to sing and how to sore!

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Lucy McHale

Lucy McHale

Singing

Rebecca Gregson

Acting Teacher

My love for drama started when I walked into the players drama school at the age of ten. When leaving high school and graduating from the players drama school I went on to study performing arts at Newman college. Following graduation from the players I was awarded a teaching assistant role essentially joining the players family as 'big sister'. From then on my passion and drive helped me obtain my dream of becoming a drama teacher.

Over the last five years I have juggled my teaching with travelling and have been lucky enough to visit some incredible places. Spending three months in a camper van covering the whole east coast of Australia and a further three months exploring California has certainly been a part of my life I shall never forget.

After exploring the world teaching become my life and I am now fortunate enough to be able to teach each and every day. I love that the arts allow both myself and the children to create, imagine and preform and I believe this is a vital part of growing and learning.

The players drama school has played a very important role in both my childhood and my adulthood and I strongly believe I wouldn’t be the person I am today without these influences. It was fourteen years ago that I first stepped foot through the theatre doors and I hope to for many many more.

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Rebecca Gregson

Rebecca Gregson

Acting Teacher

Big Sisters

Big Sisters are very carefully grown, watered and handpicked with loving care to ensure they may fill the multi roles they may have to play on a Saturday.

Meeting and greeting, a helping hand in class, ensuring pupils are where they are supposed to be, and of course superb coffee makers …. and the list goes on. To be a BIG sister (a name I coined when I brought them in 19 years ago as ‘assistant and runner’ were just too cold) they must have been a pupil with us on a Saturday and graduated from the teen group. This we find most beneficial as they know what it is like to be a pupil and can answer any questions that children may have. They are much needed and a great asset to players.

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Big Sisters

Big Sisters

Sian Davies

Dance Teacher

I began performing at a very early age and have danced for as long as I remember. Dancing was always my passion and an obvious choice for me as I worked my way through school and started to consider what to do next. I ended up studying my professional dance and teachers of dance qualification at Preston College and qualified with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in 2010. Whilst studying there, I trained in a number of different styles of dance including Ballet, Tap, Modern, Salsa, Jazz and National.

I enjoy teaching all types of dance and watching children progress and improve. I pride myself on helping them achieve to their goals and improve their skills in a fun, exciting and stimulating atmosphere. Little players are a pleasure to teach and I look forward to continuing their journey with them.

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Sian Davies

Sian Davies

Dance Teacher