Drama School: The Journey Begins

Mia Stubbings

  • OnStage United Kingdom Columnist

I believe the last time I wrote for OnStage, it was to talk about how impenetrable I had previously found the theatre industry, and how frustrating it can be, and how I wanted to cry with how much I wanted to do the thing that I wanted to, but I just couldn’t quite get there. Well, it just goes to show that persistence, perseverance and determination pay off, because last month I got into Drama School. 

Now there’s a sentence I never thought I’d write.

I found out about three weeks ago now, and it still feels a little surreal. I keep emailing admissions with questions, convinced that it’s actually all just been one big hoax when they don’t reply straight away. But no matter what I think, it’s not a hoax, it’s all very real and I’m moving to London in September to dive into all things theatre. And I absolutely cannot wait. 

I have had a fair amount of rubbish, scary, crappy interviews with various different Drama Schools. But this one was very different; I felt very much at home and I was happy and confident and excited to just chat about theatre with other people who love theatre. I took all of my life experiences, theatre experiences, knowledge about the world and the industry that I love and what I have learned from life so far, and turned it into the World’s Best Interview. I enjoyed answering all the questions, thrilled when I got them right and asked to know the correct answers when I knew I had got them wrong. I answered their ‘What was the last professional production you went to see?’ with an unexpected ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar and I LOVED it!’, and then proceeded to talk about how much I enjoy puppet shows and why I liked the set. 

I walked around the school feeling like I had absolutely and finally found somewhere I belonged, with tutors and teachers that could develop the knowledge I already had, and increase it tenfold. I did not stop smiling, and I knew very strongly that I had given a good interview, whatever happened next. I can’t describe the feeling very well, other than I left feeling like I was floating on a cloud. I just had lots of good vibes, I enjoyed myself, I didn’t feel intimidated, and I felt proud that I had had so much to talk about. I was absolutely, 100%, myself.

Four hours later, I was sat in a crowded coach station when I got a phone call, offering me a place. I definitely did a little cry. And my parents may have shrieked a lot down the phone, and the entire coach station may have known what was going on. So much so, that the man sat next to me quietly slipped a tissue onto my lap (it was needed).

So I’ve done it, and I am so proud of myself for achieving something that I refused to give up on. There have been so many times where I’ve felt like maybe I was pursuing the wrong thing, or I was wrong to put so much hope into something that hadn’t materialised yet. But there was always another, much stronger, feeling of determination that I would eventually get to where I wanted to be. It still feels surreal. And I am nervous about what bizarre twist my life is about to take, but I'm also excited. 

I feel like I'm standing on top of a mountain and/or cloud. Nothing has ever felt so right, and although I know it's going to be difficult and tough and stressful, I am so ready for it. Sometimes I have to pinch myself because it doesn't feel quite real. But it is. And I did it.