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Budding actors hope to land a cash boost
1:00pm Thursday 26th July 2012 in News
ACTOR Steven Ramsden has just appeared alongside Johnny Depp in his latest Hollywood movie.
Now he wants people to support the county’s other rising stars, by donating to the Jubilee Fund for Oxfordshire.
The 24 year-old, from Cholsey near Wallingford, was cast in two movies last year, just months after graduating from drama school.
But he says it was largely down to Oxford’s Gobo Theatre Foundation that he got his big break.
He said: “I went along to work at Gobo fully prepared to do it for free, as you would in most theatre placements, but I was delighted to learn that aswell as getting great training, I would also be paid a wage.
“I have been working steadily ever since leaving college. It would be great if Gobo got funding through the Jubilee Fund so that other, young actors can be given that advantage.”
Thousands of aspiring actors, like Mr Ramsden apply to work in the theatre each year, but with no minimum wage in the industry, most end up working long hours for little or no pay.
But Gobo, established in Oxford in 2010, wants to rectify that.
Producer Simon Coates explained: “Gobo takes talented, enthusiastic and committed 18-25s with no previous experience in professional theatre.
“We give paid contracts of between three and four months, and during this time the young people get experience of staging a professional tour, training, and at the end of it, the chance to apply for an Equity card.”
To date, all five of the company’s initial recruits have gone on to drama school.
And Gobo will shortly begin looking for 30 new interns.
The Jubilee Fund for Oxfordshire was set up in January by the Oxfordshire Community Foundation (OCF) to mark help fund the many charities and good causes struggling in the current economic downturn.
Individuals, schools, clubs and businesses are being asked to make a difference in their own communities, by donating money.
Gobo chairman David Hunter said: “Actors such as Stephen Fry and Hugh Dennis have been supportive to Gobo, and we recently made a promotional video that people paid to appear in, which raised £2,800 towards our work.
“But a Jubilee grant would make a huge difference to us.”
- To donate to the Jubilee Fund or to volunteer to fundraise on its behalf, email: firstname.lastname@example.org call 01865 798666, or drop into OCF’s offices at 3 Woodins Way, Oxford.
Alternatively, donate by phone by texting JBLE 12 to 70070 with a donation.
- To apply for Jubilee Fund cash, visit: www.oxfordshire.org
- For more information on Gobo visit: www.gobotheatre.co.uk