Performing Arts Personal Statement

The arts, and particularly performing art, are my passion and the central interest of my life.  I find the experience of theatre thrilling, both as a performer and as an audience member.  Some of my earliest memories are of creating dramatic characters in my imagination, and diverting my own experiences and feelings onto them.  I have a natural ability –a compulsion – to live through the form of a created character and to bring that character to life with the sheer imaginative conviction of my creation.  When I act a role I am that character and my “real” self moves into the background.

I believe performance is an academic profession, understanding and playing a character is psychology, understanding the human race, empathising with people and learning why they do what they do.  To study performance art is my dream, to refine my techniques, to work with people who have the same artistic instincts, and feel the sparks of imaginative creativity flying.  I feel very strongly about the importance of the arts in society and their contribution to human well-being, as society in history is only as good as the art it produces.  I believe that through the Arts I can change the world.  Theatre has the ability to capture an audience and sweep them up into a story.  I have more power in a few minutes to sway the audience than a politician does in an hour of speech.  I will work as a director, an actress and a writer because throughout history the artist has been seen as the guide of mankind and the drama as perhaps the most powerfully cathartic of all the arts.

My mother encouraged me to develop theatrical skills by taking me to several performing arts schools in my childhood.  At first I was keen to be a ballerina.  A performance of The Nutcracker amazed me and fired my ambitions.  I acted the lead role in a primary school Christmas play, and so found that acting was the profession I really felt drawn to.  I attended the Italia Conti performing arts school to study acting, singing and dance.  The annual big production was a thrill.  It was always ambitious, with detailed direction, many costume changes and dance routines.  I felt deeply at home in the backstage atmosphere and loved the pace and bustle of things, rushing to get into my next costume, but when the curtain fell it was fundamentally about the performance and vision.  Walking out from the wings into the bright lights to perform the piece, immersing myself in the music and the rhythm and becoming the character I was playing.

My passion is what makes me conscientious, I strive to create my own drama, and I find myself turning moments of my own life into pieces of theatre.  My mind is full of imaginative ideas.  In my GCSE group, we devised a piece about the seven deadly sins, inventing a scene of physical Theatre depicting each sin.  At A-level I worked on a group piece about Victorian melodrama, using the Gothic ideas inspired by Tim Burton, and a simple Brechtian style.  I have recently begun to plan a piece of theatre in preparation for this BA course, beginning like a rave and placing the actors among the crowd of the audience, blurring the line between reality and performance.  My passion for writing has developed and when took a creative writing course at The London School of Journalism, I found striving to create for a deadline was thrilling and motivated me further.  During the course I had another idea to write a stage adaptation of Mark Haddon’s The Incident of the Dog in the Night, exploring Christopher’s perception of the world.

My imagination is primarily visual, and I am also a keen painter.  I love Rembrandt and Leonardo, and was stunned by Monet’s Water Lilies at the Metropolitan in New York.  I am going to Kenya in February on conservation projects and teaching English, where I will write a piece through the eyes of a young girl and the effects poverty has on her future.  I will also travel around Europe in July seeing as much as possible of their arts and theatre life, seeking new ideas.

My enthusiasm is boundless and my ability to create constant.  I crave the working company of like-minded people, and can offer total commitment in a degree course, and the guarantee that I will utilise my time to achieve my goals.

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