Laura is our Artistic and Outreach Producer. She is responsible for making sure our young people have a quality artistic experience with who we work with and what we do whilst still maintaining our child led ethos as well as managing our increasing outreach provision. Outside of her work for RPA she is a qualified and experienced teacher and theatre director with over 25 years experience of working internationally with young people and adults in this field. As part of her work for RPA she delivers weekly self-confidence therapeutic drama sessions at the NHS inpatient unit for CAMHs in Swindon and has worked for various arts and mental health organisations across the south west both creating theatre and delivering artistic and therapeutic projects. Her biggest of which was leading a cast of 150 people through a site specific performance of a ‘Passion Play’ in Wroughton to an audience of 2000 people. Laura has been working with RPA for 10 years and is mummy to two girls who also attend lots of our classes.

Laura’s Inspirations; 

My first influences were my teachers… As a child I used to attend a tiny youth theatre in my village ran by a wonderful woman called Jean Leo. Her belief in me and love for what she did in a really straightforward pure way made me want to share words and acts.  I went to Ridgeway School in Wroughton and Mr Piper my English teacher had such a passion for language and it’s power that I knew I wanted to do something with that.  

In my adult life I have been hugely inspired by the theatre companies…. Frantic Assembly (https://youtu.be/9EHJ_BwcetY), The Paper Birds (https://youtu.be/CrP-MBCNHyE) and The Terrible Infants (https://youtu.be/AZ0VT0K5myY). Their ability to marry often political and emotive storytelling and physicality is beautiful. I am also a fan of film directors Adam Aronofsky, Wes Anderson and Paddy Considine. Anyone who can skillfully blend a truthful, gritty story with bizarre and touching storytelling is a winner in my little book. 

I also love music and it hugely influences all the theatre I direct – music allows you to feel so much more viscerally and immediately. I’ve used bands like Mumford and Sons, The Doors, Suede and many many more in my work. 

Finally…. I am constantly inspired by the young people I work with…. I love new ideas, fresh outlooks and raw talent. I am always in awe of where that can take you. 

Ready to get involved?

All elements of the sessions are child centered and there is no pressure to perform,
just to relax, enjoy and have a good time.