28 July 2014back

Creative Internships Blog Week 39

Lauren Webb, Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama

If I were to define the College in 150 characters, I would say ‘As the National Conservatoire for Wales we offer new generations leading, collaborative and industry focussed training across the performing arts’. This is one of the fundamental skills I have developed this year; the ability to confidently articulate strong arguments that concisely set out our need in the clearest way.

Working for a College, I have been experiencing all of the excitement that comes with the end of another successful academic year. Plus, the fact that this is a performing arts institution means that graduation was one big creative celebration of our talented students. The achievements here are just so colourful and exciting that they were great to hear about in the speeches! To then be entertained by opera, followed by the coolest brass performance I have ever seen, marked an enjoyable event. I got to chat to lots of lovely people too, first promoting our individual giving scheme, Connect, to all of the proud parents and then entertaining the development table at the graduation lunch!

One slightly more pressured day was the Talk and Tea with the Principal and guest speaker, the first large scale event that has been my sole responsibility. This annual opportunity to gather 100 of our Connect members and Friends of College, allows us thank them for their generous support. I had booked out the foyer and a theatre, where our Principal cast back over the year and gave a behind the scenes insight into what lies ahead. This was going to be followed by an exciting guest speaker, enlightening the audience about our Radio training programme. However, smooth planning decided it didn’t like me anymore and at the last minute our guest speaker had to pull out, although for very understandable reasons. Fortunately another of the ever helpful College staff stepped in and crisis was averted. A beautiful pared back Jazz performance followed, from two student musicians – a sax and bass player, before afternoon tea in the foyer.

It is a real privilege to have got to this point where I can enjoy these levels of responsibility and also know a number of our supporters well enough to have detailed conversations with them. It is sad to have reached the last few weeks of my time at the College, but I know I will be back again and again for the performances I really love, just to name a few: the Christmas musical, the final summer season of drama and not least the puppetry. This year’s spectacular puppetry production, The Impossible Fair, created by our second year Theatre Designers, was the biggest yet. The Mountain View Ranch, in Caerphilly, created a beautiful setting for the audience to wander from scene to scene. Everything from life size elephant puppets to singing candyfloss and 15ft giants filled the tale. I will really miss all of this creativity; even typing this blog at my desk, I can hear a flutist practicing and opera singers rehearsing.

Arts & Business Cymru has given me so many opportunities through this internship, that I couldn’t otherwise expect at this point in my career, and there a couple of exciting work possibilities lined up for the months ahead. I have been challenged in many positive ways and in a much supported environment, developing my fundraising skills. This learning experience has shown me that this is a fulfilling career path, which I really want to pursue, and most importantly I now know that this very varied work is something that I really enjoy!

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