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My journey into the world of theatre, by former Creative Access intern Lian Wilkinson

Former Creative Access intern, Lian Wilkinson uncovers how she landed herself a 6-month placement at the English Touring Theatre.

Whilst studying Modern Languages at university I was often met with the common quip of “so are you going to become a translator, interpreter or teacher?” Aside from regularly appearing on lists of 10 Things Every Language Student is Tired of Hearing, the question highlighted just how much I would have to rely on my extra-curricular work to even be considered for a job in theatre. After all, a language degree hardly screams “commitment to performing arts” in the way that going to drama school does.

It did, however, unmask my loving of travelling, and being introduced to Creative Access via my university’s careers service led me to applying for a 6-month placement at English Touring Theatre. The combination of touring and theatre was too good a match to resist, especially with the exciting line up of shows ahead.

It wasn’t just the prospect of working at an amazing company that attracted me though: Creative Access also brought with it a host of masterclasses across a multitude of arts industries, a great support network and a chance to connect with other creatives at similar stages of their careers. Needless to say I was overjoyed to find out my application and interview had been successful!

At English Touring Theatre I was able to get involved with the entire season, from the charmingly funny French Without Tears by Terence Rattigan to a contemporary staging of Othello at Wilton’s Music Hall. Tasks ranged from researching into the cities we were visiting and booking accommodation for the cast, to analysing sales reports and contributing to the company’s funding applications. Being a small team, it would be extremely hard not to feel like part of a family, and I learnt a lot over the course of my internship (which was subsequently extended by another 6 months), not only about the logistics but also the importance of touring and bringing theatre to the regions. I also developed my skills in time management and adapting materials to suit the target audience, which have remained incredibly useful as I take my next steps into the world of theatre producing.

I’ve now secured a role as Regional Associate Producer for the Belgrade Theatre (in association with Tamasha Theatre Company) and can’t wait to get started…

@LianWilkinson