The Real Kids from Fame; the All-New Version of '80S Hit Film Fame Opens in Cinemas Today. but What Is Life like at a Real Performing Arts School? ? Karen Price Visits the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama to Find out T If Students Really Spend Their Time Dancing through the Corridors in Their le Egwarmers

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), September 25, 2009 | Go to article overview
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The Real Kids from Fame; the All-New Version of '80S Hit Film Fame Opens in Cinemas Today. but What Is Life like at a Real Performing Arts School? ? Karen Price Visits the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama to Find out T If Students Really Spend Their Time Dancing through the Corridors in Their le Egwarmers


Former professional dancer Frances Newman is a senior lecturer in movement "We teach movement to actors and I bring the discipline of a dancer to the course.

"We look at body language, the way you hold yourself and how actors communicate through drama, such as showing feelings of confusion, nervousness, anger and vulnerability.

"I used to watch episodes of the TV series of Fame all the time. I was already at college when it was on. s "When most people go to college they are 18, 19 or 20 so a lot of growing up happens during that time. It's the first time they've left home and have to manage money and the first time they fall in love. In a way this was all reflected in Fame.

The programme didn't glamorise the performing arts for me.

"At the Royal Welsh college we are very organic and truthful. We look at the grittiness of the business. A lot of professional performers drink a lot. We talk about how to manage that and the other pitfalls of the business.

"Through programmes like Strictly Come Dancing and The X Factor people have the idea that you can get to the top very quickly but you don't. It's about discipline and hard work. College teaches you about the realism of the business."

Rosie Wyatt, 20, is a third-year BA acting student "A lot of people say that from the minute they could walk they wanted to be an actress.

"When I was 17 I moved to Stratford-Upon-Avon and I went to see a lot of Shakespeare plays and fell in love with theatre.

"It's very intense at a drama college - they really push you. I remember hearing a story that when you start drama school they make you shave your heads so there are no barriers, but it's absolutely not true!

"But it's very hard work and there's no time for extra hobbies. It's very vocational - from day one you dedicate yourselves to dancing and acting. There are very long hours.

"I've seen Fame the Musical and maybe you expect all the personalities (at drama school) are going to be just like them.

"You wonder whether everyone will rock up in leotards and legwarmers. But we have movement lessons rather than dance lessons so it's a lot less jazz hands.

"I think the new film will encourage more people to go to drama school and I don't think that's a bad thing. I think the film will show that it's a very competitive business and hard work.

"I think it's much better for people with a talent to come to drama school than maybe try to go on Big Brother to become famous.

"But while the film may have the word 'fame' in the title, at the Royal Welsh College we are less about wanting to become famous and more about being successful. Fame is all about being 'papped' and being seen on the red carpet.

"I've seen trailers for the film and it looks very slick and everyone in the school looks sexy. But drama school is hard work and you have to be there for the right reasons. Being famous is not why you come to drama school. You have to want to act and sing and dance.

"As far as I'm concerned, I'm really interested in working in theatre but if any good TV or film projects came along I wouldn't say no."

Former actor an director Jamie G is a senior lectur acting d Garven rer in "The life in a drama school is fantastic.

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The Real Kids from Fame; the All-New Version of '80S Hit Film Fame Opens in Cinemas Today. but What Is Life like at a Real Performing Arts School? ? Karen Price Visits the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama to Find out T If Students Really Spend Their Time Dancing through the Corridors in Their le Egwarmers
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