Award-winning Scottish theatre, television and film actress Siobhan Redmond joined rehearsals at Edinburgh College’s Performing Arts Studio Scotland (PASS) Theatre to collaborate with students on a new play at the Fringe, Snowflake.
Siobhan joined three HND Acting and Performance graduates from Edinburgh College, Mirren Wilson, Harvey Reid and Shyvonne Ahmad, who are also part of the cast.
The play is the first work from the Scottish Drama Training Network (SDTN), a new ensemble for acting, performance and technical theatre graduates from Scotland’s further education colleges and higher education institutions as they make the transition from training to industry. More than 80 candidates drawn from these institutions auditioned for director Mark Thomson. Of the 27 invited to attend recall auditions, eight actors were selected to join The Network Ensemble for 2017. Edinburgh College performing arts lecturer Edward McGurn will be supporting the initiative in his role of assistant director.
With themes of belonging and how to find human connection in a world dominated by social media, Snowflake has been inspired by the experiences and input from students across the Scottish Drama Training Network. It is a reflection of the struggles that face the generation which has grown up connected to a digital world.
Siobhan Redmond is a BAFTA-nominated actress (Between the Lines), with 30 years of experience working with the Royal Shakespeare Company and National Theatre of Scotland, and has appeared in long-running roles in many TV dramas such as The Bill, Holby City and Taggart, as well as featuring in Doctors, Eastenders, Benidorm, Midsummer Murders, New Tricks, and in Tim Burton’s 2016 film Alice Through The Looking Glass. Her stage credits include: Eleanor of Aquitaine in King John with RSC and Lady Macbeth in Dunsinane with the RSC/NTS; Mephistopheles in Dr Faustus at the West Yorkshire Playhouse; Titania/Hippolyta in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Shakespeare’s Globe; and appeared with Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson – who is the patron of PASS at Edinburgh College – in John Osborne’s play Don’t Look Back In Anger at The Lyric Theatre in London, directed by Judi Dench. She was appointed an MBE in the 2013 New Year Honours list for her services to drama.
Siobhan Redmond said: “I am delighted to be recording my voice as the part of Mum for the network’s inaugural production of Snowflake. It is a pleasure to be able to support Scotland’s emerging talent and I wish the ensemble all the best with their run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.”
Ethelinda Lashley-Scott, curriculum manager for PASS, said: “Siobhan’s involvement in the production is great for everyone in the ensemble. Getting to meet top actors like her and having the opportunity to work on an original production is so vital in the learning experience of young actors. With opportunities like this the SDTN is allowing drama students to further develop their acting skills in a professional environment, equipping them with the tools and knowledge of how to succeed in the industry.”
Mark Thomson said: “I am thrilled that Siobhan Redmond accepted our invitation to record the role of Mum. It is wonderful for the ensemble to have the support of such a celebrated Scottish Actor.”
This new production ensemble, The SDTN is supported by leading theatre professionals, who this year are Mark Thomson, Siobhan Redmond and Sound Designer Phillip Pinsky, with Edinburgh College. The Network has been established to produce new work at the Pleasance annually during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
You can catch the performance at the Pleasance Theatre, Edinburgh from 5 – 28 August.
Tickets are available to purchase from the Pleasance Theatre website.