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Triforce’s MonologueSlam UK could be career changing for young actors

Holby City star Chizzy Akudolu, host of MonologueSlam UK at Theatre Royal Stratford East
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Anything which gives young actors the chance to be seen by agents and casting directors has got to be a good thing so three cheers for Triforce Promotions, founded by Fraser Ayres and Jimmy Akingbola, which has created a network of more than 1,200 members across the entertainment industry. It aims to build connections between performing arts professionals “from the top to the bottom” so that individuals have more control over their own careers.

It was with high hopes of seeing something impressive that I took myself to the faded red plush opulence of Stratford East earlier this week for Triforce’s latest MonologueSlam UK – and I wasn’t disappointed. This time it was a drama school special so every participant had had training. That meant that I’d seen a number of the actors taking part before in fairly recent graduate showcases and I was struck by the huge distance some of them have travelled since then in terms of acting quality.

Nine actors took part in the one minute round before the interval and 10 in the three minute round in the second half so there were 19 participants in all. There was a wide range of material and I certainly hope we shall see more of, for example, Clio Davies, Andrew Seddon and Demi Jo Franks. A panel of six industry professionals had the unenviable task of picking winners.

[pullquote]Slick, funny and clever[/pullquote]

I was also impressed, as I have been previously, at MonologueSlam UK events with Shoot from the Hip the resident improv company. The four male actors’ work is admirably slick, funny and clever. The group runs a weekly training session in Farringdon as well as performing regularly.

The slam was entertainingly fronted by Chizzy Akudolu of Holby City fame and, through all her joking and joshing, she never allowed her audience – predominantly industry professionals – to forget it’s jobs they’re after and that anything and everything which happened on that stage could be career changing.

The next MonologueSlam UK is at Stratford East is on December 15

Read more training columns from Susan Elkin

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