AN ASPIRING actress is heading to a drama school that has been producing stars of stage, TV, film and radio for more than half a century.

Jenna Smith, who studies drama, dance and PE at Priestley College, has chosen to study at East 15 Acting School in London after also receiving an offer from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.

“They were the two schools at the very top of my list, but I never expected to actually receive offers from them,” said Jenna.

“I couldn’t believe it when I found out and was very excited.”

East 15 has been training actors, directors, producers, theatre practitioners and technicians for more than 50 years.

On its website Hollywood actor Colin Firth is quoted as saying: “East 15’s extraordinary legacy and its reputation for rigorous and inspired teaching ensures students consistently display an unusual degree of courage, vision and versatility that is very exciting to watch.”

Jenna, a former pupil at King’s Academy, will be in East 15’s newest cohort after two successful years at Priestley.

She opted for the drama school because she felt it offered the best chance to train in a wide variety of disciplines.

“It means I can combine my interests in acting with other interests such as dance and physical theatre,” she added.

Jenna, who hopes to one day work with physical theatre companies such as Frantic Assembly and Kneehigh, said A-level study had improved her acting skills and confidence.

Tutors also supported her application and with improvements to her audition pieces.

“The drama exams and dance shows have been a highlight of college as we were finally able to perform together even though it wasn’t in front of a big audience because of Covid,” said Jenna.

Priestley College’s performing arts department is renowned for equipping young actors with the skills they need to make it on the stage and screen.

Oliver Ormson was in The Book of Mormon and The Addams Family and is set to be in Frozen in the West End.

Gabriella Leon made her debut as a regular character called Jude in Casualty.

Bethany Lambert was in the cast of Matilda in the West End, Laura Harrison toured with the Rocky Horror Show and Georgia Frost is appeared in A Monster Calls at Bristol Old Vic.

And actors and musicians Matt Morley and Sam Allen who were so inspired by Priestley that they named their Americana band after the college.

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