playbox professionals FAQS
Playbox Professionals is an exceptional programme of work, aimed at young people aged 15+ who are keen to pursue a career in the arts as either performer, director or producer. It is a high commitment group and places are very limited.
Do I need to have a lot of theatre experience before I become a Playbox Professional?
We are looking for young actors who are determined to pursue a career in the performing arts. We would expect you to have a passion for theatre and to have seen a range of live performances.
Do I have to be a member of another Playbox workshop to join Professionals?
Absolutely! Playbox Professionals is a specialist course that is only available to fully registered members of the Theatre Training Programme. You must continue to attend your Theatre Training Programme when you are in Professionals.
How long do I have to have been a member of Playbox before I can apply to join Professionals?
There is no minimum length of time…you can apply to join Professionals as soon as you are a member of Playbox Theatre. If you feel the urgent need to prepare for a career route, then you should apply for Professionals straight away.
Do I have to audition to become a member of Professionals?
There is no practical audition, but the group is selective. You and a parent would be asked to attend an interview with the director, to ensure that this is definitely the right course for you.
What is involved at the interview?
There will be a discussion regarding the realities of becoming an actor, director or artist, to ensure that you are ready to face the challenges. We will talk to you about the programme and answer any questions that you have.
If I’m not offered a place after my first interview, can I reapply?
Of course. If you are not offered a place following an interview, we will talk to you about why this decision was taken and will advise what you should do in order to improve your chance of being offered a place.
How often are new places offered?
Every season we invite new members to join the group, as long as there are spaces.
How does the Playbox Professionals workshop differ from the core Theatre Training programme?
Professionals is a tight group of young people who have expressed serious interest in pursuing the arts as a career route. It is a commitment course, and members are expected to be absolutely dedicated to their training, and to involve themselves fully in the wider workings of Playbox Theatre. Members will be driven to work at an intense level and work is undertaken to help members to prepare for drama school and university. A serious attitude to an arts career is a major consideration, with members expected to achieve an advanced level of result.
What age are the Professionals?
How many people will be in the workshop?
There will be a maximum of 20 young people – it is usually closer to 15.
Do I have to come to this workshop every week?
Absolutely! Playbox Professionals is a full-commitment programme and you must attend weekly.
If I have to miss workshops because of other commitments, will this be acceptable?
Not usually – you are expected to prioritise this commitment, and your family should be aware of this when you are offered a place. If there is a serious event which will affect your attendance, this must be discussed with the director well in advance. Failure to attend your training may result in you losing your place on the course.
What sort of material can I expect to explore in Professionals?
Our programme of work is varied and far-reaching, and is designed to reflect the current theatre landscape, contemporary practices and approaches, as well as exploring practitioners across theatre’s history.
What is a typical Professionals workshop like?
There is no typical week! Usually your session will be intensive, varied and invigorating! The group work incredibly hard, yet enjoy the challenges they are set. There will always be a warm up, debate and discussion, introduction to material, practical exercises and feedback/reflection time. Sometimes workshops are a ‘one-off’, other times we will explore material over a series of weeks.
Will I have the chance to present work through Professionals?
Professionals is not a presentation programme – it is an intense workshop event, where material and ideas are explored without observation. However, on occasions, we will open the doors for audiences to come and share your work. This might take place in a studio, site specific or on stage.
What should I wear to my workshop?
As with all of our work, it tends to be very practical and physical and must wear loose, comfortable clothing. No specialist clothing is required.
What should I bring to my Professionals workshop?
You should always bring a notebook and something to write with, as well as copies of any material that you have been given in previous workshops.
Where does the workshop take place?
All workshops take place at The Dream Factory in Warwick. You will be working in one of the rehearsal studios at the theatre.
How much does it cost to join this course?
There is a combined fee to cover both membership of the Theatre Training Programme and Professionals. The fee is £240 and this is payable three times per year (once per season, which runs in conjunction with the school term).
Who will be running Playbox Professionals?
The programme is directed by Consultant Director, Stewart McGill. Stewart co-founded Playbox Professionals with Executive Director, Mary King, in 1988. To find out more about his work with Playbox Theatre and beyond, please have a look at his biography on the Playbox Team page.
When does Professionals happen and how long is the weekly workshop?
Playbox Professionals takes place every Saturday within our season dates and the time is 9am-11am.
Can Professionals help me get into drama school?
It really can, although there are no guarantees, as is the case with any aspect of the arts! Professionals can prepare you, can give you increased confidence and will help you explore a range of texts and songs to present at your audition. You will also undertake interview practice and audition technique – and you will be well-versed in debate and discussion. Recently, Playbox Professionals have gained places at some of UK’s top drama schools including RADA, LAMDA, Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, Guildhall and Royal Welsh College Of Music & Drama, to name a few! It can certainly provide a spring-board…but ultimately, it is up to you.
As a member of Professionals, will I definitely be successful if I’m auditioning for a Playbox production?
All of the usual Playbox Casting guidelines apply, so please have a look at the Casting FAQs to understand our criteria and casting process. However, the commitment you will have shown and the intensity of your training should stand you in very good stead, when it comes to auditions.
Does being a member of Professionals mean that I will be put up for professional auditions?
No – the workshop is called ‘Playbox Professionals’ because the group are made of young people who aim to become professional artists for their career. You will be expected to have a completely professional attitude to your work – however this is also the case for every member of Playbox, in whichever group they attend. If you would like the opportunity to be considered for professional castings, beyond Playbox, you will need to audition for the Playbox Agency, and be taken onto our books.