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Matt Henry and Drew McOnie among new patrons of Urdang Academy

Matt Henry and ensemble in Kinky Boots at London’s Adelphi Theatre. Photo: Matt Crockett Matt Henry and ensemble in Kinky Boots at London’s Adelphi Theatre. Photo: Matt Crockett
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Olivier award-winning performer Matt Henry is one of seven new patrons to be announced by Urdang Academy.

Other patrons appointed by the London-based drama school include choreographers Drew McOnie and Dean Lee and composer, performer and producer Andrew Lippa.

Casting directors Pippa Ailion, Natalie Gallagher and Trevor Jackson complete the list.

The patrons were announced at an event in central London.

Henry, who trained at Urdang, said: “I very feel honoured to be invited back as a patron of this school.

“I’ve gone full circle and now I hope I can be that beacon of inspiration to all the students who will pass through its doors.

“There’s nothing more rewarding than giving back, giving each student the opportunity to develop into the future stars of tomorrow.”

Jackson added: “It is certainly true that I am passionate about training and I also believe that there is a vast, untapped seam of raw talent in this country that flounders due to the lack of access to training for reasons of background, geography and finance.

“Addressing this problem was at the heart of what [the school’s founder] Leonie Urdang set out to do when she opened the school, and it is an ethos that has been continued and amplified by Solange [Urdang, chief executive].”

Urdang Academy also announced that it has become a member of the Council of British International Schools, which is an association that aims to advance the interests of British schools overseas.

The drama school revealed it plans to expand its work internationally in Europe, Asia and America, which will include delivering workshops abroad and hosting more international students in London.

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