How should I help DS go forwards?

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willywonka
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How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by willywonka » Fri May 10, 2019 8:58 am

Hi, hoping to get some advice here as really unsure what to do. I have a 9 year old DS. He sings from the minute he wakes till he goes to bed. He acts every spare minute he gets. He has an agent, goes to a saturday performing group, Does his LAMDA Musical Theatre (Grade 3 Distinctions all the way), LAMDA Peforming (Distictions all the way). So far he has been in two West End Shows, which is fantastic.He has loved every minute of it and counts the days till he can do it again. Problem is, is that he is very tall for his age. He is already 4'9. Too tall for Les Mis, too tall for Joseph, Mary Poppins etc. So getting another role in theatre will be tricky. Matilda is a possibility, but his dance is not great, he is hyper mobile and very dyspraxic!
He has been asked to audition for some movies/commercial/tv etc. It is a huge fight to get him to learn any lines. So much so that I begin to dread when I get an email from his agent. I have discussed with my son about stopping the auditions, but as soon as it is brought up, he gets exceptioanlly angry with me, screaming and shouting saying that acting is the only thing he wants to do and he defenitely wants to carry on.
What doI do? Its such a fight getting him to do learn lines for auditions, he goes into the auditions, and I think he just stands about not putting effort in.Its not really fair though as soon agency will take him off the books if they think he is mucking them about. I have explained that there is not much work in theatre and that he needs an all round experience so filming is good for him too. But it is falling on deaf ears!

Problem 2 is we are looking at Secondary Schools. He has been really badly buillied at school in the past, where it began to get violent and he was in A and E. We havr put him in another school where he is a lot happier, however, none of the kids really "Get him", so he battles socially. He hates sport, and his whole world is Theatre, singing, stage, movies etc. At Drama and when on set, he has lots of friends. We are looking for a Secondary School for him to go to where he will fit in. Any suggestions? We live in North London, so needs to be accessible. We think Sylvia Young will be perfect for him, however he keeps saying he does not want to go there,as he did a camp there and found the dance hard. I have explained to him that he was much younger then and would be different as a full time school! Any ideas hugely appreciated! Many Thanks

Hilltop
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by Hilltop » Fri May 10, 2019 9:12 am

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Last edited by Hilltop on Mon May 13, 2019 7:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

islandofsodor
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by islandofsodor » Fri May 10, 2019 10:51 am

Can you afford fees and boarding?

If he wants to concentrate on just acting then The Hammond has a Lower School drama course where they only have to do one class a week of dance (and its basic movment dance, their actual dancers are on a separate course) but it is in Chester so quite a long way from you and not all children would be ready to board at that age. They have some scholarships available which can be generous if they like a child.

Also I think Arts Ed do a similar drama course but I have no personal experience of that. I know Arts Ed is expensive.
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FredaBloggs
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by FredaBloggs » Fri May 10, 2019 12:50 pm

With respect to West End shows, he's not too tall for School of Rock, the dance in that isn't too difficult and they do cast 9-year-olds in ensemble, so that might be one to try (unless that is one of the WE shows he's already done, of course!).

I wondered reading your post whether perhaps your DS doesn't get quite the same buzz out of TV/film/commercial auditions as he does from MT auditions. MT auditions are usually done as a group, so there is the social aspect, the sense of performing together, and they often have more of a workshop feel to them, while screen auditions just tend to be 1-to-1 for 10 minutes in a casting room, or a self-tape at home.

I've pm'ed some information on secondary schools that you may find helpful.

ScoobyDoo
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by ScoobyDoo » Sun May 12, 2019 5:24 pm

Although it is not so glamorous, why not try for local shows and panto, they are still great learning experiences and maybe take a break from the film/tv until he feels more inclined to do it. If he is not enjoying the process right now it might put him off for good, which will be a shame as he sounds so keen. Such a shame about his height, we have had the same issue, so I do understand as we are trying more for filming roles now and they are hard work and sometimes when they have lots on and are given pages of script to learn in 24 hours it is really gruelling and even the keenest child will feel mutinous. One thing I can recommend is we have started using an App for learning lines, so it is less about me sitting and learning it with him and more about him being in control and learning it by listening to it over and over. It feels much less onerous.

willywonka
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by willywonka » Sun May 12, 2019 5:42 pm

islandofsodor wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 10:51 am
Can you afford fees and boarding?

If he wants to concentrate on just acting then The Hammond has a Lower School drama course where they only have to do one class a week of dance (and its basic movment dance, their actual dancers are on a separate course) but it is in Chester so quite a long way from you and not all children would be ready to board at that age. They have some scholarships available which can be generous if they like a child.

Also I think Arts Ed do a similar drama course but I have no personal experience of that. I know Arts Ed is expensive.
Thanks. Defenitely not looking at boarding. Will have a look at distance of getting to arts ed as we are in North London

willywonka
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by willywonka » Sun May 12, 2019 5:47 pm

ScoobyDoo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 5:24 pm
Although it is not so glamorous, why not try for local shows and panto, they are still great learning experiences and maybe take a break from the film/tv until he feels more inclined to do it. If he is not enjoying the process right now it might put him off for good, which will be a shame as he sounds so keen. Such a shame about his height, we have had the same issue, so I do understand as we are trying more for filming roles now and they are hard work and sometimes when they have lots on and are given pages of script to learn in 24 hours it is really gruelling and even the keenest child will feel mutinous. One thing I can recommend is we have started using an App for learning lines, so it is less about me sitting and learning it with him and more about him being in control and learning it by listening to it over and over. It feels much less onerous.
Scooby Do, what app is this, it sounds great? Also where would I find Panto? He is trying local theatre which he loves, but he says he still wants more! Its really hard, I feel so sorry for these tall kids. I wish he would take a break, but he talks about acting and performing ALL the time!

willywonka
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by willywonka » Sun May 12, 2019 5:48 pm

FredaBloggs wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 12:50 pm
With respect to West End shows, he's not too tall for School of Rock, the dance in that isn't too difficult and they do cast 9-year-olds in ensemble, so that might be one to try (unless that is one of the WE shows he's already done, of course!).

I wondered reading your post whether perhaps your DS doesn't get quite the same buzz out of TV/film/commercial auditions as he does from MT auditions. MT auditions are usually done as a group, so there is the social aspect, the sense of performing together, and they often have more of a workshop feel to them, while screen auditions just tend to be 1-to-1 for 10 minutes in a casting room, or a self-tape at home.

I've pm'ed some information on secondary schools that you may find helpful.
Thanks so much, defenite food for thought!

biscuitsneeded
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by biscuitsneeded » Sun May 12, 2019 6:20 pm

Once he's 10 you can also look at NYMT which is a very fertile training ground for some of the best MT performers. They do have to dance at audition but a boy who is a very strong singer and actor and who will give it a go stands a very good chance.

ScoobyDoo
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Re: How should I help DS go forwards?

Post by ScoobyDoo » Sun May 12, 2019 11:16 pm

Hullo again, the app is called line learner and you record the lines in, then you can play both initially, then just the other person's lines so you can say yours. My son loves it. As for panto, we just keep an eye on all the local theatre Facebook pages and websites. I hope this helps.

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