QMYOU Alumni Magazine Issue 85 - Page 21

Y OU ONLY HAVE to meet student Harry Jackson once and you’ll never forget him. His striking image is indeed memorable and his energy infectious. At just 21 years of age, Harry is a force to be reckoned with. He’s not reached his graduation date yet, but he’s already established his own business, which he’s running from QMU’s Business Innovation Zone. Passionate and entrepreneurial, this Acting student from Northumberland secured funding from QMU’s Student Development Fund to launch Amplify Time Productions. As Artistic Director, Harry helps to provide talented acting and performance students with opportunities for personal development in different professional settings. Students get the chance to develop their personal skills, gain hands on industry experience and showcase their talents to the market. It builds their CV and helps them develop industry connections for the future. This year, funding from QMU’s Student Development Fund helped Harry’s company place 30 students in a classic production in a major theatre venue in Edinburgh. Discussing his choice of course and career, Harry said: “I chose QMU, as both the University and the BA (Hons) Acting for Stage and Screen have a reputation for providing quality, intensive actor training which is realised practically through performances in assessment and end of year shows. The course allows you, as a creative, to develop practical and academic knowledge across the subject. There is also the opportunity to collaborate with a wide variety of students across QMU’s creative industries, potentially leading to great opportunities which may help to shape future careers.” Harry continued: “On an academic level, being able to develop many skills and knowledge across the duration of the course has been the most rewarding part of my learning experience. It has given me so much more to play with as a professional actor and director. I really cannot emphasise enough how this course helps improve you as a performer and ensures you are ready for entering professional industry!” Harry is the first QMU Acting for Stage and Screen student to have created a production company of this type and scale. The benefits go far beyond Harry supporting other students and creating opportunities for them to develop beyond the course curriculum. He believes Amplify can be sustainable and he plans to extend its reach across the different courses and year groups, as well as performing in the Fringe and cities outside Edinburgh. Securing the Student Development Fund award has helped Harry use the Amplify project to test his ideas and put them into practice both academically and as a director. He said: “I’m delighted that over the last year, we placed 16 QMU actors in our production of ‘Doctor Faustus’, with three QMU students taking on crew roles. I’m now looking forward to the challenges of growing the business and developing more opportunities for creative students.” Harry concluded: “Investment in new initiatives like this is essential to get a new student company off the ground. I’m grateful to QMU’s Student Development Fund for helping me begin to realise my ambitions.” ------------------------------------------------------------- In October, Harry shared his experiences with donors and supporters at QMU’s Scholarships and Awards Reception, an annual event held at Edinburgh’s Dovecot Studios, which celebrates the achievements of QMU students who have been supported by awards, scholarships, grants and internships. Importantly, the reception allows Q MU supporters to meet students face-to-face and gain a better understanding of the impact that these types of opportunities are having on their student experience and career ambitions. It also helps supporters realise the value of their contribution to QMU and assists in developing a culture of giving amongst a wider audience. ❒ IMAGE CREDIT: Michael Brady Follow Amplify on Twitter @amplifytheatre QMYOU / Development / Student Feature 21