BWA TRUST GRANTS
BWA Trust Fund was set up to financially support our former pupils as they continue their training at full time vocational colleges.
Thanks to the extremely generous support from The Betty Wivell Trust, I have confidently accepted my place at The Royal Academy of Music, to complete the academy’s renowned MA Musical Theatre course and have since been awarded the Disney Theatrical Productions Scholarship.
Prior to pursuing Musical Theatre, I qualified with a 1st Class Degree as an Event Manager and despite enjoying the fast-paced nature of the Events sector, I have decided to follow my desires at heart, and pursue a career within the performing arts industry, beginning with RAM. Being led by the Academy’s network of professionals, and by immersing myself in the rigorous training that the Academy has to offer, I hope to be equipped with the most efficient skills to exhaust every opportunity there is, once in the demanding yet exciting theatre industry. I truly cannot wait to get started.
I would like to express my extreme gratitude to BWA, for their endless love and support.
I like to think of myself as an artist simply because I don’t want to limit myself, I wish to extend myself to all ends of the dance world, and really push myself. I have been so lucky to have been offered so many amazing opportunities over the years and that I have been dancing that have helped shape me into the dancer that I am today. Performing at Move it 2019 with the Khronos Agoria company was one experience that pushed me physically in rehearsals and on stage, it also expanded my ability to enact a character and have it reach a large audience. It taught me many others skills such as adaptability, reliability and self-discipline which will greatly aid me on my course. In addition, Khronos successfully achieved first place in the senior moden section at the All England Dance Festival. I think that every dancer should experience the festival world at one point in their life because it teaches very important lessons and so much discipline. I have also been so lucky to have been offered places and most of the top schools in the country, these include… bird college, LIPA, Urdang Academy, Performers college, London Studio Centre and Rambert.
All this experience, skill and training that I have obtained made me into the person and performer that I am right now and This unique student, wants to say a massive thank you to The Betty Wivel academy for all the support, training and passion it has given me over the years.
Isabelle Ouattara is studying at the Liverpool institute of performing arts. She is in her second year of a three year course studying on the Ba Hons Dance course.
Naomi is currently studying a foundation in Musical Theatre at the Performance Preparation Academy in Guildford.
Molly Jones Doherty
In 2019, I completed my UAL Level 3 Diploma course in Dance at The BRIT School and achieved a Distinction which I worked hard for. Without a doubt, I have developed new skills especially in Urban and Ballet as these are the areas I see the most improvements. From a young age I have trained in ISTD at The Betty Wivell Academy of Performing Arts, successfully completing all grades up to Advanced 2 in Tap and Modern and Grade 7 and Advanced 1 in ballet. From the many things I have learned at Brit, team work skills from group choreography and discipline from Professional Practices have always been at the forefront of my training. I took part in extracurricular classes to improve my technique and conditioning and spent extra time at school going in early and staying late every day to improve anything required.
I am working towards completing my ISTD DDE teaching courses in Ballet, Tap and Modern. This course has taught me how to meet deadlines, work with others, learn quickly and keep on top of my work. At The Betty Wivell Academy which I attended for 15 years, I regularly cover classes if I am needed. I also cover Peri classes in Jazz, Tap and audition prep for the Brit school when required and have been asked to assist in teaching particular Choreography to Khronos Girls. This has allowed me to practice my teaching skills but also work with younger people to improve their confidence, and technique. This has helped my communication with others and to realise how other people work. By doing this, I am able to change my teaching strategies to allow my students to learn in a technically accurate environment. It has helped me boost my confidence and has made me work harder under pressure. Being an inspiration to so many young people is definitely something I find very fulfilling.
Over the years I have participated in PDTD exams as a student at the Royal Academy of Dance, as well as various Licentiate exams. Through this I have been given an insight into the teaching route which is something I may potentially go into and have learnt more about the technical side of dancing which I can apply to my own training. Furthermore, as well as training in ISTD and RAD, I also regularly attend extra classes at studios such as Pineapple and BASE, expanding my dance vocabulary and learning new choreography under pressure. This shows my commitment and dedication towards my training and shows I am passionate to improve. I have also completed all of my LAMDA exams, achieving 91% in my final exam which was Grade 8 Gold Acting and won an Award for most improved in drama at my performing arts school.
Aside from dancing, I have completed my Bronze Duke of Edenborough Award. This helps in many aspects of life as it has taught me volunteering skills, first aid, physical skills and team work. Additionally, I have completed my Silver Young Ambassadors Arts Award at Trinity Laban. This focuses on doing work for the community and volunteering to help at important events.
From the ages of 7-15 I have been part of an ensemble for various pantomime companies as well as The Nutcracker (The English youth Ballet – 2012), Wind In The Willows (CODA – 2013), Up Next (The National Theatre’s Annual Fundraising Event – 2017) and performed in the Gala of the London Tap Dance Intensive at The London Cabaret Club after attending their advanced three day intensive. I took part in the Remembrance performance at Catford theatre, our dance paid tribute to the Soldiers and families of WW1. 2019 was a successful year for me as I was lucky enough to perform with P!nk in the Brit Awards. This was very rewarding and gave me an insight into the industry and type of work I’d like to do in the future. I successfully auditioned for Khronos Girls which was a contemporary/urban fusion based company. We performed in Britain’s Got Talent in 2019, making our way to the Semi Finals.
Dedication, self – motivation, teamwork skills and a love and appreciation of dance are qualities which I feel I possess. I am prepared to take on any challenge I face as I embark on the next stage of my training.
BWA has prepared me well for the next step of my career and I will carry on all the advice given to me by all the teachers, not only for my training, but for any future career I will obtain.
I am very grateful to the Trust for the funding they are giving me as it will be extremely helpful.
On September 2017 he started at Bournemouth University to study a 3 year scriptwriting course.
The BWA Trust Fund is financially supporting Edward with an equipment grant for 3 years.
At BWA from 1992-2007
Adam trained at ArtsEd on a 3 year Musical Theatre Diploma course
Adam is currently playing Boq in the London West End production of Wicked.
In December 2007 Adam appeared in Christmas in New York at the Lyric Theatre.
In December 2008/January 2009 Adam appeared as one of the Lost Boys in Peter Pan at the Ashcroft Theatre Croydon and recorded with Maria Friedman for her latest CD.
Previous credits include:
“A Slice of Saturday Night” at Upstairs at The Gatehouse.
Princeton/Rod in the Uk Tour of Avenue Q.
Alanna is studying at The London Studio Centre for a BA Hons in Theatre Dance.
In Alanna’s own words……
I am writing to send my most sincere thanks at the receiving of double the trust fund for my third and final year in vocation training at London Studio Centre. Betty Wivell has always been and will continue to be a massive part of my life.
I am so grateful for everything the school has done to develop my training and the opportunities received here that have ensured I reached where I am today. As I am finally leaving home (highlighting finally), I will be investing a portion of my trust fund in a laptop so I can write my 3rd year dissertation. I am also planning to buy a video camera of some kind so I can actually record my own choreography and keep it as a record and a way of analysing and evaluating it. I am hoping to pursue a career in choreography following my graduation from Studios, so this is a massive help.
Thank you so much again, will most definitely see you very soon at the upcoming BWA events throughout the due course of the next year.
Middlesex University Musical Theatre Degree and Royal Academy of Music one year Post Graduate course in Musical Theatre under Mary Hammond
Theatre credits include The Cheshire Cat (West Yorkshire Playhouse) Carmen (New Vic, Stoke, Bolton Octagon and The Stephen Joseph Theatre Scarborough) Sinbad and the Diamond Princess (The Theatre, Chhipping Norton) Aladdin (Everyman Cheltenham) Cabaret (Broadway Theatre Catford) Little Shop of Horros (Landor Clapham) The Threepenny Opera (Pimlico Opera).
Television and Film Credits include Life Begins (ITV) Personals (Wobegong Films) McCready and Daughter (BBC1) and Star for a Night (BBC1).
Alice has been involved in many original recordings and can often be found doing the odd jazz gig aroud London.
Alice runs The Sunset Cabaret Lounge with her sister Sarah with whom she also has a very successful comedy act which has played venues such as Jermyn Street Theatre and The Water Rats, Kings Cross.
3 year course at Urdang.
Becky has just been offered a DADA at Urdang, 2 weeks into her training which is excellent.
In Becky‘s own words…
Hi I’m Rebecca Botterill, better known as Bex.
I have just started a three year musical theatre diploma course at The Urdang Academy. I am extremely grateful to the Betty Wivell Trust for helping me peruse my passion for Musical Theatre.
I have only been at Urdang for a week now and I am completely knackered, however I am enjoying the Performance Jazz lessons as we get to learn new routines from current shows are teachers are involved in such as Shrek and jersey boys. On the other hand I’m finding it difficult to enjoy the early morning Ballet classes but still learning a great deal from them. Most people at Betty Wivell knew Tap wasn’t my favourite lesson however at college I am growing to love it. We also, have a class called Body Conditioning which consists lots of running, jumping, sit ups, press ups, stretching and pain but I actually love this class as I can feel myself getting healthier and building on my stamina.
I am extremely happy at The Urdang Academy, but I do miss Betty Wivell and will be coming back to see you all very soon!
Training Glasgow University BA hons in Acting
In Charlotte’s Own Words
I’m now in my last term of my final year on the BA Acting programme at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. The time has absolutely flown by and I’ve especially enjoyed getting to know Glasgow and it’s beautiful surroundings.
I’ve had some incredible opportunities through the school. These include developing an aerial show 20m in the air (!) with the Artistic Director of the National Theatre of Scotland, Graham McLaren; performing ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ with the Scottish Symphony Orchestra live on BBC Radio 3; collaborating with students from Carnegie Mellon University (USA) to create a movement piece for TEDex Glasgow, which we then toured to Prague (for the Quadrennial Festival) last summer.
After playing Queen Rat in the last annual Pantomime (‘Dick McWhittington’) in December, we moved on to our showcase which we’ve just performed in Glasgow and at the Soho Theatre. Rehearsals start soon for our final plays – in which I’ll be directed by Mark Thompson (Artistic Director of Edinburgh’s Lyceum Theatre) as Sarah in Mike Bartlett’s ‘Earthquakes in London’.
I’m thrilled to have been selected to perform at Shakespeare’s Globe in April, representing the Conservatoire at the annual ’Sam Wanamaker Festival’ – a celebration to which each drama school sends just one scene.
And finally, I’m flying to Munich next weekend to speak on behalf of our course at an international meeting of European drama schools and academies (EUTSA).
As a Brit, I find it almost embarrassing to write down my plans and achievements in this way – but I think it’s important to recognise and acknowledge the incredible opportunities that have been made available to me as a direct result of my experience and training in Norbury.
At the BWA I learnt how to work with a wide range of people; was introduced early to professionalism and the importance of a strong work ethic; was exposed to, and gained respect for, many forms of performance – all without mention the discovery of a craft I love and chose to pursue. Overwhelmingly, the friendships I made with fellow students and continued support I’ve received from Elizabeth and Sheena (as well as others connected with the school) are incredible, and I’m very grateful!
The Trust’s generosity has lessened the (considerable) financial burden of studying, and means I enter the ‘real world’ again in minimal debt and with great excitement – thank you so much for enabling me to write the paragraphs above!
Daisy Smalley Nicholson
Training Performers diploma in Musical Theatre
In Daisy’s Own Words
Hi my name is Daisy Smalley-Nicholson and I am currently studying the 3-year Trinity College Diploma in Musical Theatre at ‘Performers’ Corringham Essex. Approaching the final term of my first year, I feel that I have already learned so much through this course. Working 10-12 hour days could seem daunting to prospective students, but I can assure you that it is all worth while. I have been studying Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Contemporary and Commercial dance. I have also had the amazing opportunity to study Acting, Singing and Musical Theatre with excellent teachers at a very high standard. I would like to thank the BWA Trust for contributing to my funding and enabling me to have this fantastic opportunity. I feel very privileged, excited and proud to be part of an establishment where auditions are held exclusively for Performers students into the West End theatre shows and many leisure companies. The 2nd and 3rd year Performer’s students are involved in ‘Move it’ every year and this year I was overjoyed to witness the outstanding talent and hard work that went into their contribution to the show. One of my goals for the next two years is to be part of this incredible event.
My training at BWA has helped me to attain the standard that I am working at today and has enabled me to study for my DDI exams a year early. I have found the DDI course demanding, challenging and difficult to fit in, alongside an already very demanding schedule, but it has been a worthwhile experience and one that will stand me in good stead for my future.
I am very much looking forward to the next two years of my Diploma and would once again like to thank BWA and The BWA Trust for enabling me to continue with my pursuit of a performing career.
Training Urdang diploma in Dance
In Emma’s Own Words
Ive just finished my first term at the Urdang Academy were I am on the BA (Hons) course studying Professional dance and Musical Theatre.
The first term flew by as my timetable was always busy and I had very long days but I cant complain because I absolutely love it.
I would always have said that dancing is my strongest point and what I feel most comfortable doing but focusing on other skills that I’m not so confident on is beginning to feel okay and not as scary. Its actually nice to try something new and I want to get as many opportunities as possible so I”m trying my hardest!
The next 3 years I’m sure will be a challenge but with hard work and determination I’m looking forward to what I can gain.
I’d just like to thank BWA and the Trust for supporting me and helping me follow my dreams. Im so grateful and I cant explain how much it means to have people believe in me.
Training ArtsEd – 3 Year Musical Theatre Course
Daisy is thrilled to be playing Margot and cover Elle in this production of Legally Blonde. She recently completed the UK Tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, having graduated last summer from Arts Educational Schools, London with a BA (Hons) in Musical Theatre. Credits whilst training: Soloist in Friday Night is Music Night (BBC Radio 2), Vocalist for Kerry Ellis in Concert (London Palladium), and the Olivier Awards (BBC Radio 2 and ITV). Other credits whilst training include: Bonnie & Clyde, Evita, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum, Movin’ Out, The Pirates Of Penzance.
TV appearances: Ballet Shoes (Granada TV).
Recordings: The Snow Queen (Julian Gibbs).
Daisy made her West End debut at the age of 12 in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at the London Palladium and she is eternally grateful for her training as a child at the Betty Wivell Academy of Performing Arts. Daisy holds particular affection for Aberystwyth as her family originated from the local area. Her sister, Molly, is also in the cast of Legally Blonde and they are delighted as this will be the first time they have performed together professionally.
Daisy will be playing the title role in Cinderella for Qdos pantomime in Hastings this Christmas.
Training Bird College, Sidcup, 3 Year Dance Degree
In Javana’s own words…
Hi my name is Javana Forrest and I am about to start a 3year diploma in musical theatre at Bird College in Sidcup. I am so happy to have been given the opportunity to start studying at Bird college and I am extremely excited to meet new people and learn so many new things. I have already learned that my days at Bird are going to be very long and very tiring,but I am looking forward to working hard and improving in everything I do.
I will be moving into halls in September ready to start the course. I am rather nervous about leaving home and having to live with different people but I understand that is a step you have to take in life. Although I am nervous I have been talking to many people who are about to start Bird College or already attend the college and everyone seems very friendly and really welcoming. I guess I am just over the moon that I will be attending the Bird College and really can not wait for my first day!
Gwainn Van der Bijl
Training London Studio Centre: BA Hons in Theatre Dance
In Gwainn’s own words
I will soon be starting the first term of my first year at the London Studio Centre in North London where I will be studying for a BA Hons in Theatre Dance. In this course I will be receiving lessons in all dance styles including partner work which I have wanted to study for a while now. There is of course plenty of choreography on offer as well as options of following singing and acting which I hope to continue.
BWA has prepared me well for the next step of my life and I will carry on all the advice given to me by all the teachers, not only for my training, but for any future career I will obtain.
I thank the Trust for the funding they are giving me as it will be extremely helpful in the year to come and will be used wisely.
Training East 15 Acting School
Janet performied in a production called Beyond Caring that is based around the exploitation of certain zero hour contracts in Britain. It has just been given an extended run ( playing till Saturday 23rd May 2015) at the National Theatre, Temporary Space. Some reviews:
At BWA from 1990-2006
Lisa Bonsels went to ALRA – The Academy of Live and Recorded Arts in London on their 3 year degree in acting course.
In Lisa’s own words:
I’m in Austria… with Vienna’s English Theatre doing a tour of a play called ‘Butterflies are Free’ by Leonard Gersche for 7 months, I’ve been here for a month already and I’m loving it.
We’re travelling all over Austria and some of Italy as well it’s pretty amazing.
Training London Studio Centre 3 years dance degree
In Lucy’s own words:
I am currently studying for a B.A. Hons Degree in Theatre Dance at London Studio Centre.
First year was absolutely brilliant, with many highlights such as Dance Overture, our end of year production held at The Wimbledon Theatre, ‘Dance Lab’, where I spent a week at Central Saint Martin’s University working with students to create a 30 minute performance for an audience, Anatomy and Singing Results, both being the highest marks for my end of year report!! And my Overall Development, looking back on how successful my First Year was, even with the ‘fractured foot setback’ (which, after rehabilitation and patience, has made me a stronger dancer!!).
Now I am going into Second Year, I’m really looking forward to choreography class and entering a piece into our Student Platform. I’m also eager to build my stamina and strength over this year so that I’m ready for Third Year, where we get to decide what company we would like to specialise in, which will either be Contemporary, Jazz Company, Ballet or Musical Theatre.
The Betty Wivell Academy prepared me thoroughly over 7 years for vocational college and I am forever grateful for all the support and opportunities I’ve had with the teachers, pupils and the school.
The BWA Trust has also supported me by part-funding my course with a bursary. It helps to meet the cost of tuition fees, enabling me to fulfil my future goals; being a musical theatre performer, a choreographer and a successful dance teacher.
As well as graduating, Luke is still determined to learn and in Summer 2017 he also joined the “Acting for Screen” intensive course. He hopes that the course will give an opportunity to learn new skills and open some doors that may have otherwise remained shut.
“Although I graduated four years ago, I think it is hugely important to keep learning and growing. Especially in a ‘business’ that can be precarious at the best of times.”, he proclaimed.
“I am so looking forward to it, and will be sure to keep everyone posted!”
“I would like the thank the Betty Wivell Academy family (teachers and students) without them I wouldn’t be able to do what I love.”
“And even more – I am so grateful for the continued help and support from the trust!”
In Sarah’s own words…
I am now one term into my third and final year of study at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama; the workload has intensified and the pressure to achieve is mounting!
It has always been my intention upon completing my degree to go onto to study a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) to qualify as a secondary school teacher. The competition for places is fierce with hundreds of applicants for as little as 12 places; and having applied for a place in October I am extremely happy to have been given the opportunity to study an English and Drama PGCE at The Institute of Education. I start Sept 2013 and am ‘over the moon’, I am aware it will be an incredibly tough year but hope to come out of it a fully qualified, capable and dedicated teacher.
Now all I need to do is write my dissertation…wish me luck!