Teenager lands place at top school

Ryan Mockridge
Ryan Mockridge

A TEENAGER has been awarded a scholarship to study at one of the country’s top performing arts schools.

Ryan Mockridge, 17, of Park Way, landed a place at the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts in London to study a performing arts diploma for three years, starting this month.

Past alumni of the school include Scottish actress Karen Gillan, who recently starred in Doctor Who and actor and playwright Noel Coward.

Ryan, who attended William Parker Sports College, said: “I was quite excited when I found out I’d actually won the scholarship, as well as shocked, as I had to put in a lot of hard work to get it.”

His mother, Cheryl, said: “The Dance and Drama Awards (DADA) scholarships were introduced by the Government in September 1999 to provide funding for talented students.

“Ryan was chosen to audition in front of the West End casting director David Grindrod on behalf of the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, which gives out one scholarship per London theatre school per year. Ryan got down to the last seven students who were put forward for this scholarship.

“Ryan has always wanted to have a career in the performing arts and has taken part in many local performances with the Hastleons, Bexhill Light Operatic and Dramatic Society (BLODS) and the White Rock summer and Easter youth projects. He has worked very hard to achieve his goal and looking forward to moving to London and the next three years of training. Although Ryan is having the course fees funded he still needs to raise funds towards his living accommodation and dance wear costs to be able to continue to live in London. He has received some sponsorship though from the Magdelen and Lasher charity.”