Second year for Brian Weaver Fellowship

Brian%20WeaverThe Brian Weaver Fellowship will  be offered to another aspiring actor from Derbyshire in 2015  following its successful first year Derby Theatre has announced.

Set up in 2013, due to a generous personal donation from Buxton resident Doreen Weaver in memory of her late husband, Brian, the fellowship will once again provide a local young actor with a number of fantastic opportunities in professional theatre.

When Brian sadly passed away Doreen felt like she wanted to create a legacy for his passion for theatre and decided to approach Derby Theatre to discuss how this could be recognised in his home county. Now, thanks to Doreen’s continuing generosity, the fellowship will run for a second year in Brian’s memory.

The successful fellowship recipient for 2015 will gain professional acting experience and the opportunity to appear in two Derby Theatre productions plus benefit in many other ways from the Theatre and the links it has to the wider UK theatre industry.

Adam Horvath, from Derby, was the first successful recipient and he has appeared in The Odyssey, directed by Sarah Brigham, and is soon set to start rehearsals, as part of the acting company, for Derby Theatre’s big festive production of A Christmas Carol.

During the run of The Odyssey, Adam was also seen by Nottingham Playhouse’s artistic director, Giles Croft who subsequently offered him a key role in his production of The Second Minute, which played at the Playhouse before embarking on a UK tour.

Adam said: “Receiving The Brian Weaver Fellowship has been the biggest springboard of my career so far. Being involved in two professional productions has helped me gain invaluable experience of working over a prolonged period in an industry environment and also reinforced people’s view of me as a professional actor, opening doors for me to work outside of Derby.

“As a result of being seen in The Odyssey, I was cast in a play produced by Nottingham Playhouse, which did a two month tour around the country, and which also led to further offers of work.

“Alongside all of this, I received support from Sarah Brigham and many people at Derby Theatre with setting myself up for work beyond the life of the fellowship, which has resulted in me signing to a brilliant agent who I am confident will help me to continue to carve out a life as a professional actor.

“What Doreen has done by creating this fellowship is extraordinary. It’s given me the opportunity of a step up, and a fighting chance in this industry. Wherever it takes me (hopefully, onwards and upwards!), I will never forget Doreen’s generosity, and will be proud to say to anyone, that my career began at home, with The Brian Weaver Fellowship.’

Doreen Weaver said: “The auditions for the Fellowship last year were new to us all. We were delighted with the response we received, and surprised at the amount of talent and enthusiasm shown by the applicants. Due to the successful year which Adam has been enjoying, I am sure that he will be an inspiration to all those thinking of applying this year. We could not have chosen a better person to pioneer this project and I wish him every success in his career in the theatre.

“I shall look forward with great interest and excitement to seeing the actors who apply this year. I know that Brian would have been very impressed to see so much talent in his home county.”

Sarah Brigham the theatre’s artistic director said: “Since launching the Fellowship last year, the success of the scheme has gone beyond our expectations. Adam’s performance in The Odyssey was fantastic and I am thrilled that he will be part of the ensemble company for A Christmas Carol. His amazing talent, coupled with his incredibly positive attitude and willingness to learn, has seen Adam soar and thrive over this past year and develop further into a great actor who I’m confident will do very well in the business. We will continue to support him whenever, and however, he may need our support in the future.

“As for Doreen, we can’t express our gratitude enough, for trusting us to develop and nurture a local actor in this way, through the Fellowship and in Brian’s name and memory. We thank her most sincerely for her continuing generosity and helping us in our endeavour to support the next generation of artists in our region. ”

Applicants need to have either been born in Derbyshire or be currently living in Derbyshire; aged between 18 to 29 years old; should aspire to a professional acting career, and so have some acting experience, which could be through amateur groups, school, youth theatre or some professional theatre, but not with an established career.

The Fellowship is intended to help support someone who may not have had the chance, due to financial, social, or cultural barriers to have taken up a career in acting or be likely to in the future. The applicant therefore needs to write 500 words explaining why they feel they need the scholarship and how they will benefit from it.

The applicant needs to be available from late summer 2015.

If you are interested in applying for The Brian Weaver Fellowship please send 1. your CV, outlining a) any acting experience along with any other experience that you feel demonstrates your commitment to theatre and details b) your educational history and c) any work experience, and 2. a covering letter of 500 words to Andrew McIntyre at: a.mcintyre@derby.ac.uk by the deadline Monday  December 15. If you have any specific questions regarding the fellowship then please contact Caroline Barth, Head of Learning at Derby Theatre at: c.barth@derby.ac.uk or on 01332 593944 before Friday December 12.

The applicant will be selected on the basis of an audition and an interview in early January 2015.

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