Stephanie Shepherd, alumna, Theatre Director
How an LSBU education is helping one graduate to bring theatrical performances to new audiences
An LSBU education is never just about learning the theory. Students are always encouraged to apply their learning to real world situations, and our curriculum is informed by the latest thinking industry to keep our graduates fresh, relevant and highly employable. We also encourage students to become life-long learners, dedicated to continually developing their understanding and skillset throughout their careers.
Stephanie Shepherd is one such graduate. A graduate of BA (Hons) Creative Practice: Theatre Producing, (preceding the BA (Hons) Drama and Performance), Stephanie founded her own production company, Lazy Dog Theatre Company, before returning to LSBU to study a part-time Masters degree.
"I'd been producing fringe theatre for seven years before setting up Lazy Dog," recalls Stephanie. "My aim in setting the company up was to encourage non-theatre goers to engage with the arts by bringing traditional stories to life in non-traditional spaces. I want to create accessible theatre for all the family, whether people are new to the world of theatre or veterans."
Such an innovative approach to theatre inevitably attracted like-minded individuals, and in April 2013, Lazy Dog applied its unique approach to Oscar Wilde's raucous yet eerie comedy 'The Canterville Ghost'. From April 26-28, Rickmansworth's Loudwater Farm was home to a theatre production like no other.
Directed by Sean Turner, Associate Director at The Courtyard Theatre in London, and boasting a live score by Richard Melkonian, 'The Canterville Ghost' captivated audiences and critics alike. This was thanks in large part to the unique delivery championed by Lazy Dog.
"It was an interactive play," says Stephanie, "so the audience was an integral part of the proceedings. They had to join in with the actors to bring the story to life. The adaptation was written by Stephen Dinsadale, a highly accomplished writer who works for the BBC."
Stephanie feels that her education at LSBU has been an important part of helping her launch a career as a Theatre Director. "Studying at LSBU really helped me to develop my knowledge of the theatre industry," she says.
I chose my courses specifically because of the professional prospects upon graduation, and both of my qualifications helped me to hit the ground running. I'd definitely recommend LSBU to anyone serious about a career in theatre management and directing.