Alumnus helps produce five-star London stage show

Wed 03 November, 2021
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A graduate from the University of Bedfordshire has completed a successful run as Assistant Stage Manager for The Old Vic Theatre’s production of Camp Siegfried.

Daniel Roach-Williams, who graduated from Bedfordshire’s Media Performance course in 2014, put skills learned at the University into practice at the two-century-year-old theatre, helping bring Bess Wohl’s production about a pre-Second World War American summer camp to life.

During a turbulent period for the theatre industry due to Covid-19, Daniel turned to retail and delivery services in hope of work. However, after getting contacted by The Old Vic as restrictions began to ease, the former Bedfordshire student is delighted to be back where he belongs. He said:

“I feel absolutely privileged to have worked at a renowned theatre like The Old Vic. Not everyone gets to work there and I am so honoured.

“Covid hit the theatre industry in a way that left me and anyone who works in theatre or the entertainment industry wondering if they would ever work again. At the beginning of the pandemic, for the first six months, there wasn't a single job going. I started to look elsewhere for any job, in supermarkets, retail and delivering services. I just wanted to work again.

“When the cases started to decrease, work was coming through more. I was just sitting at home and got an email from The Old Vic, asking if I wanted to work with them on a new series performed on stage in front of cameras instead of a live audience, allowing people to watch from home.

“When The Old Vic contact you, you never turn them down! And from that job, so many doors have opened for me. I am entirely grateful to them." 

Daniel was first introduced to the role of Stage Manager while studying at Bedfordshire, where he successfully took skills learned into an industry placement at the Theatre Royal Stratford East. He continued:

“The University gave me the best foundations I could have asked for in stage management. My course was so in-depth it gave me experience in everything from rigging lights, using a sound desk and writing a call sheet to prop sourcing. My lecturers were so knowledgeable and they were there for me every time I needed them; they pushed me than ever before to make me the person I am today.”

Tamsin Withers, Company Stage Manager at The Old Vic, has spoken of how Daniel fitted seamlessly into his role. She testified: “Dan was an invaluable member of the Camp Siegfried team. He is meticulous and precise, keen to learn, and passionate about what he does – exactly the qualities I look for in an Assistant Stage Manager.”

Rachel Clark, Senior Lecturer in Media Performance at the University, added: “Daniel has had a successful career path building on the skill he learnt with us. We are so proud and delighted about his accomplishments and his position as Assistant Stage Manager at The Old Vic is fantastic.”

Camp Siegfried ran at the Old Vic from 7th September – 30th October 2021, gaining five-star reviews.

For more information about studying Media Performance and Production courses at Bedfordshire, call the Admissions team on 03003300703 or visit the University’s website.

Image credit: Manuel Harlan

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