BBC Performing Arts Fund announces winners of Training in Musical Theatre scheme

Training to be a musical theatre performer requires not only talent and dedication, but also significant financial resources. We are delighted to be able to relieve some of the burden on these hard working and promising young stars and we look forward to following their careers in the future."Miriam O'Keeffe, Director of the BBC Performing Arts Fund,
Date: 09.12.2011     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 18.13
Category: Corporate
The BBC Performing Arts Fund has awarded £150,000 to 62 individuals through its Training in Musical Theatre scheme to contribute towards their higher education training.

Ten drama schools and colleges successfully applied for grants of between £10,500 and £18,000 to help talented musical theatre students with their fees. The winning beneficiaries are those who are in greatest financial need and would not be able to complete their musical theatre training without the help of the BBC Performing Arts Fund. The grants will ease the pressures of paying their tuition fees and allow them to focus on developing and growing as performers.

The 62 successful students are from across the UK. Previous winners of the Training in Musical Theatre scheme have gone on to appear in the West End (Les Miserables, The Lion King, Mamma Mia), in UK and international tours, and many are currently appearing in pantomimes up and down the country.

This is the fifth consecutive year that the scheme has been running and, to date, the Fund has awarded over £700,000 to 213 recipients via the scheme.

Miriam O'Keeffe, Director of the BBC Performing Arts Fund, said: “Training to be a musical theatre performer requires not only talent and dedication, but also significant financial resources. We are delighted to be able to relieve some of the burden on these hard working and promising young stars and we look forward to following their careers in the future.”

The successful colleges are:

  • Arts Educational Schools, London – 11 recipients
  • Bird College, Sidcup – 6 recipients
  • Cambridge Performing Arts, Cambridge – 2 recipients
  • Laine Theatre Arts, Epsom – 4 recipients
  • Midlands Academy of Dance and Drama, Nottingham – 3 recipients
  • Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, London – 9 recipients
  • Royal Academy of Music, London – 10 recipients
  • SLP College, Leeds – 12 recipients
  • Urdang Academy, London – 3 recipients
  • WAC Performing Arts and Media College, London – 2 recipients

Responses from winners:

“The Royal Academy of Music is hugely grateful to the BBC Performing Arts Fund and the support that it has offered our Musical Theatre students over the years. Many students have been able to realise their dream of studying here only as a result of the financial support the BBC has generously given them.”

Stephen Minay, Musical Theatre Company Coordinator

“This grant will help me so much toward my tuition fees at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, I feel like a weight has been lifted of my shoulders. I can't thank the BBC Performing Arts Fund enough!”

Scott Slater, 1st year student at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts

“Without this support I wouldn't be able to continue living my dream at Bird College. I am forever thankful to the BBC for giving me this opportunity, funding for the arts is limited nowadays and I feel very privileged to be one of the lucky ones to be awarded support.”

Hannah Lancaster, 1st year student at Bird College

Notes to Editors

Details of all the grants awarded are available in a PDF file on the right-hand side of this page.

The BBC Performing Arts Fund is a registered charity, number 1101276.

The charity (formerly Fame Academy Bursary Trust) was set up in 2003 within the BBC. The fund receives revenue from the voting lines of BBC One entertainment programmes that seek to find new performing talent (including Fame Academy, How Do you Solve A Problem Like Maria? and Over The Rainbow).

To date the fund has allocated more than £3.8 million to talented performing arts individuals and community groups, as well as offering mentoring and advice to help them achieve their goals.

The Fund's mission is to seek out and support aspiring performing arts individuals and community groups who, for reasons of lack of existing support, personal background or circumstance, would not have been able to achieve their most ambitious goals or greatest potential without the Fund's support or intervention.

JB