Welcome to Don’t Give Up Your Day Job, a blog series where we will be asking our Stage & the City students a series of questions in order to find out more about their jobs. People often think that in order to attend one of the courses, they need to have a performing arts background or have an arts-related job, but that’s far from true. We want to show you that people from all walks of life can still enjoy the arts, it doesn’t matter if you work as a police officer or a marketing manager!
What’s your name and what do you do for a living?
I’m Amy and I’m a communications manager in the NHS.
How long have you worked in that industry?
I’ve been working in the industry for twelve years.
What made you want to choose that career?
I trained and worked as a journalist, but realised quite soon I didn’t really have the temperament for it. In the field I’m in now, I get to use my journalistic skills, but with a focus on looking for good news, not bad.
What made you decide to sign up for a course with us?
My friend had done a course with Stage and the City before, and really enjoyed it, and encouraged me to try it out. I wanted to improve my confidence – my friend had to prod me to go along to the first lesson as I was so nervous I had an upset stomach! – and I also wanted to be more creative. I harbour a secret aspiration to become the Amy Poehler of Penge and realised that wouldn’t come close to happening if I didn’t take myself out of my comfort zone.
How long have you been a student and what do you love most about the course?
I’ve been doing the comedy course for a year. Our teacher Maddy creates such a relaxing, supportive environment and of all the courses I’ve done in London, this has been the most sociable, with people of all ages and backgrounds, and I’ve made friends for life. My confidence has soared and I’ve found something I really love. Now, with Maddy’s help, I’ve performed twice, I’m working on submitting an idea for a comedy radio drama, and I’m also hoping to take a show to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. My new-found confidence also led me to audition for a local pantomime, which I’ve now got a part in and for which I have written some lines! It’s been completely life-changing.