Picture of our performing arts students

Two final-year Theatre and Performance students from University Centre St Helens had an exclusive opportunity to perform alongside theatre professionals at radical arts and cultural centre, NIAMOS, based in Manchester.

Bethany and Oliver, currently studying BA (Hons) Theatre and Performance (Top-up), performed solo pieces, alongside professional artists as part of NIAMOS’ ‘Emergency Stop Gap’ showcase, which featured an evening of live art and durational performances.

Bethany’s live instalment piece, ‘15.8% Tired’, highlighted the decline of depression, in a hard-hitting, metaphorical performance, which explored the use of the word ‘tired’ and its hidden meaning. Her impressive solo piece was performed in a confined box, intended to convey the harsh reality of depression.

Bethany commented, "This was my first solo professional work - I was nervous when I realised I'd be working alongside amazing artists. However, on the day of the performance, everybody made me feel welcome, and the night was a great place to gain further professional practice. I am excited to see what other work I can create to take into the professional world of theatre."

The NIAMOS Theatre, previously known as the Hulme Hippodrome and the Playhouse Theatre, is built on a long-standing history as a prestigious venue for music legends such as Nina Simone and The Beatles.

Oliver’s durational performance explored prevalent issues young people are faced with in today’s society such as mental health and gender identity, including the detrimental effect it has on them. This piece focussed on the mundane routine of a 9-5 working life, which was performed in a repetitive theme throughout the evening.

Oliver explained, “It was exciting to be able to show our work alongside professional artists and to see behind the scenes on a professional level. I learnt so much by being in the space and being around other artists. The experience has definitely had an impact on me and has developed my creativity when it comes to my performances. This amazing opportunity has confirmed to me that this profession is achievable.”

Theatre and Performance Programme Leader, Ian Greenall, said, “I was very proud to see the students performing alongside the professional artists and performers, where they fitted in very comfortably. It was a huge step towards their professional careers within the industry.”

He added, “This is the first year that we have delivered the BA (Hons) Theatre and Performance (Top-up), so to have students already finding their way in the industry is a credit to the course, and to the commitment and talent of our students.”

If you are interested in studying a degree in Theatre and Performance at University Centre St Helens, visit our Theatre and Performance section for more information.

Degree Students Perform at Historic Manchester Theatre