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Graduate talent recognised at Edinburgh Fringe

Photo Credit: Robin Mitchell

21 Aug 2019

A production put on by graduates from nine Scottish colleges and universities has been honoured at this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Billed as a homage to classic coming-of-age movies, ‘The Brunch Club’ picked up the Bright Spark Award from the Scottish Theatre Awards on the Fringe, recognising the talent of the graduates involved.

The Cast
Kieran Bole (D&A College)
Taylor Hall (City of Glasgow College)
Nicole Macari (Queen Margaret University)
Draya Maria (Ayrshire College)
Jamie McGregor (Glasgow Clyde College)
Jarad Rowan (Ayrshire College)
Rudy Punchard (North East Scotland College)
Rhys Watson (Edinburgh College of Art)

The Creative Team
Megan Adair (RCS)
Cara MacDonald (Edinburgh College of Art)
Loui McMaster (North East Scotland College)
Caitlin Park (Ayrshire College)
Samantha Rae (Ayrshire College)
Kathryn Weaving (Edinburgh College of Art)
Shannon White (Perth College)

Put together with the Grid Iron theatre company and the Pleasance theatre, The Brunch Club is the third Fringe show to be put on by the SFC-funded Scottish Drama Training Network (STDN), consisting of 19 Scottish colleges and higher education institutions that provide practical drama training in Theatre, Film, Television and Radio subjects.

Devised with the Network Ensemble and written and directed by Grid Iron Co-Artistic Director Ben Harrison, The Brunch Club traces the origins of teenage cliques from ‘the invention of the teenager’ in the 1940s to how they manifest in the world we live in today.  Eight young people gather in a university student union cafe where they form alliances, fall in and out of love, and learn from the friction and energy created between one clique and another.

SDTN is funded by SFC (and hosted by the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland) to develop and sustain high quality specialist education for stage and screen performance across Scotland, and improving articulation routes for college students in these subject areas.

The Network Ensemble supports acting, performance and technical theatre graduates as they leave training and embark on their professional careers. Supported by leading theatre professionals, the Network Ensemble now produces new work annually for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, in association with the Pleasance Theatre Trust.

John Kemp, SFC Director of Access, Skills and Outcome Agreements said:

“We’re thrilled for this year’s graduates and the well-deserved recognition they’ve received with this award. “Scotland has a rich history in the arts and creative education.

"SFC is proud to support that and we wish the graduates all the very best in their future careers.”

Lucy Vaughan, SDTN Director said:

"We’re delighted to receive this ‘Bright Spark’ award with our co-producers, Grid Iron and the Pleasance Futures for this year’s Fringe production, The Brunch Club.

"The Network Ensemble was set up by SDTN in 2017 to showcase emerging talent at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and to have our initiative recognised and the graduates from our Network Colleges and Institutions celebrated in this way by the Scottish Theatre Award is wonderful and a testament to the talented and creative young people training in Scotland. This award is also for everyone, lecturing staff, students and professional theatre makers, who supported the Network Ensemble on our journey to the Fringe."

Following a full run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, The Brunch Club will transfer to the University of the West of Scotland Ayr Campus for performances as part of their Fresher’s Week activities.

For tickets and more information, see: https://sdtn.org/the-network/the-network-2019/

SDTN Colleges and Higher Education Institutions:
Ayrshire College, City of Glasgow College, Dundee and Angus College, Edinburgh College, Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh Napier University, Fife College, Glasgow Clyde College, Glasgow Kelvin College, Inverness College UHI, New College Lanarkshire, North East Scotland College, Perth College UHI, Queen Margaret University, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, University of the West of Scotland, West College Scotland.