In a long and continuing tradition, Hurtwood students – or, strictly speaking, ex-students – made their mark with style this summer.
Niamh Collins achieved extraordinary success with her play written while she was with us, at the tender age of 16. Featured in the ‘After Hurtwood…’ series on Muse, you can also see there the striking advertising material for her play, 'Ladies Who Lunch' - read a glowing review here. Needless to say, Niamh achieved sell-out performances over the run, official critical approval and recommendation from the Fringe itself. Most importantly, she pulled off an incredibly moving piece of theatre, worth an hour of anybody’s time. She had a ball, clearly, and also deftly managed her multiple roles, as director, publicist and surrogate ‘mum’ to the whole company. Keep it up, Niamh! Now back at Durham and back in graduate harness.
Also making her Edinburgh debut was Sofie Miller. Performance poet Sofie wowed us over the last two years with her acute and frankly stunning poetry. You can also listen to a recording of her reading as part of our Photoverse competition earlier this year on the Muse Podcast. Naturally, she went straight from completing her A levels here to giving her all to audiences in Edinburgh. From eco concerns to body image, her striking work has caught the zeitgeist. She definitely has a lot to say, all of which is worth our attention. Now in New York on a script-writing adventure, she promises to share more of her experiences with us in November when she returns.
In Edinburgh she presented a sustained narrative in the form of her one-woman show ‘Never Stop Loving You’. She describes the whole thing as ‘The most interesting and exhilarating experience of my life.’ Unsurprisingly, just like Niamh, she was approached by a theatre company who are hoping to help to develop it in the coming months. A reworked version may be on the cards for Edinburgh next year. The funky poster is the work of our not-so-hidden Muse superstar Giselle Pe, who also travelled to the Fringe to help support Sofie backstage. Enjoy the shots of work and company in action, and the creative camaraderie of Hurtwood. Hurrah!