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Drama Tutors Biographies

Introducing our ACT Aberdeen's tutors...

Victoria Cowan        
Saturday Workshop 10.30am – 11.30am
 
From the age of three Victoria has been performing at The Scottish School of Musical Theatre. In 2010 she left her home town of Hamilton to study music teaching at the University of Aberdeen. Having recently graduated and start teaching music at Banchory Academy, Victoria is very excited about joining the act team and can’t wait to start. When Victoria is not studying, lesson planning or practising clarinet, she can be found rehearsing for shows in and around Aberdeen.


Lisa Williamson  ACT2 Director and Saturday Workshops

Lisa currently works as Creative Learning Facilitator at Dundee Rep Theatre where she runs 4 youth theatre classes, directs productions as well as project manage and facilitate on a number of school projects both in Primary and Secondary schools.  Prior to her job at Dundee Rep, Lisa was Drama development intern at The Point in Eastleigh where she also facilitated youth theatre & assisted on a variety of productions as well as managing the administration of the youth theatre. Lisa studied Contemporary Theatre & Performance at Manchester Metropolitan University and is really excited to explore different styles of performance and theatre making with the participants at ACT Aberdeen.



Sheena Blackhall     
Saturday Workshops


Sheena Blackhall is a poet, novelist, short story writer, illustrator, traditional story teller and singer. She also writes books for children, ‘Millie’, ‘Apardion’ ‘Loon’ and ‘Victor Vratch the Craw an oline collection of tales in Scots for children. She had written 2 televised plays for children, and for many years wrote stories for ‘Nickety Nackety’, Radio tales for wee ones on Radio Scotland, producer Frieda Morrison. Along with Les Wheeler, she co-edits the 
Doric resource Elphinstone Kist, and currently works on the Aberdeen Reading Bus, as a storyteller and writer, also sitting on the editorial board for their children's publications in Doris, promoting Scots culture and language in the North East.

Sheena also worked alongside Aberdeen's well loved 'first lady of drama' Annie Henderson Inglis MBE at ACT Aberdeen from 2003–2010 delivering weekend storytelling and drama workshops for three to eight-year olds. She continues this work alongside Trish Harvey, who provides the drama and dressing up adventures. She is Aberdeen and the North East’s ‘Makar.’
 
Trisha Harvey            
Saturday Workshops

 
The first time Trisha Harvey ever set foot on a stage was in a production with the Longacre Players in the Aberdeen Arts Centre when she was a teenager. Completely hooked after that, she went on to study acting at E15 Acting School in London. After many years working in London she returned to Aberdeen  (ten years ago) and couldn’t resist the lure of the Arts Centre. She still acts, directs and writes but many of her happiest hours are spent as a tutor in the Arts Centre, where she can be found on a Saturday morning with the 3-5 year olds going on adventures to ‘far- away’ lands on magic carpets hiding from dragons and rescuing princes. 

Julie Hutton    
Castlegate Theatre School Director

 
Julie has taught drama in many primary and secondary schools around Aberdeen City and Shire.  She has worked for Live Wire Productions for many years developing and presenting shows and workshops for schools and science festivals including Techfest and the Dundee Science Festival.  Julie has run the Haddo Children’s Theatre for 13 years, each year working with between 50 and 60 youngsters aged 7-16 years and putting on an annual musical.  For the last 4 years Julie has directed historical enactments for Aberdeen City Council with the group Pastimes in locations like the Tolbooth.  Julie loves treading the boards and has performed in the last 3 pantomimes at the Arts Centre and has been in the last 3 Fleeman Production tours.  Julie is really excited at the opportunity of her new post with the Theatre School and is looking forward to working with an enthusiastic and talented group of youngsters.
 
Barry Donaldson     
Castlegate Seniors Director

 
Barry is very excited about joining the ACT creative team.  Much of his initial teaching and acting experience was in the Arts Centre, so returning to the venue where it all began is a great feeling.  Barry graduated from teaching with a 1st class honours three years ago and has continued academic studies by taking on an MA with Middlesex University and Trestle Theatre Company.  Barry currently works as Development Officer for Literacy, where he project manages The Reading Bus project. 
 
Hazel Mair
CTS & Seniors Musical Director


Hazel LTCL, LGSM, Dip.Te.Mus.is a well-known Performer, Entertainer, Teacher, Director and Church Organist within the North East.  Having taught Music in Schools for the last 20 years, she now works from home teaching voice, piano and keyboard and enjoys the variety of music from a very talented bunch of Students.  She has also held the position of Church Organist and Musical Director at Torry. St. Fittick’s Parish Church for the last 37 Years and regularly plays at Weddings and Functions at Glen Tanar Estate, Fyvie Castle and Haddo House.  Hazel is delighted to be continuing her position of Musical Director for both Junior and Senior Sections of Castlegate Theatre School and is much looking forward to being part of an exciting and creative team at ACT Aberdeen.