With the students gone this week has really been focused on driving through the marking, ready for the exam boards next week and a little planning for next year.
On Tuesday and Wednesday we interviewed for new staff. The department is growing and from September we're introducing three new pathways: Drama and Applied Theatre, Drama and Physical theatre and Drama and Theatre Arts. Each course will offer a rigorous practical training, combined with a focus on the context in which work is made... but we need more teachers.
In the end we made two exciting new appointments both of whose work I've seen and admired. Theatre Director Annabelle Arden, who was a founder of Complicite is joining us as Senior Lecturer and the actor Ian Hughes, who I first saw play the Fool to Robert Stephens Lear for the RSC, in the early nineties is joining us as an acting tutor.
During his presentation to the Drama staff Ian talked about that production and playing alongside one of the most exceptional stage actors of the late twentieth century. Some nights apparently Stephens was so brilliant that Ian forgot to act and just played. I think I must have caught one of those nights because I can still remember spinning out of the theatre into the Stratford night knowing that I'd just seen acting at its most brilliant.