An Interview with Alfie Whitchurch

Alfie Whitchurch stars as EnjolrasWhy did you come to Seaford?
I came from Great Ballard. The facilities at Seaford are fantastic. And when you drive up that drive, wow! Seeing the sports fields and all the different blocks, it’s in a league of its own. You can see the drive and enthusiasm that everyone has to keep moving forwards. I admire the way the school always looks to the future and doesn’t look backwards.

What productions have you done at Seaford?
In Year 8, I was in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as Jacob, Joseph’s Dad. In Year 10, I did Twelfth Night, then last year, the Sound of Music. In Les Misérables, School Edition, I’ll be Enjolras, leader of the French Resistance.

When did you start acting?
I started acting when I was about eight. I did a small club in Worthing called Stagecoach. It incorporated everything; singing, dancing and acting. Then when I was about 10 I started doing LAMDA. I started on Grade 3. I skipped Grade 4 and did Grade 5, skipped Grade 6 and Bronze and went straight to Silver.  I got my Silver in September, I’m now doing my Gold.

What do you like about LAMDA?
Just learning about how to interpret different pieces. One of my pieces was a comedy piece but I was taught that I could completely change my voice and my face to make it angry. So I could make things sound more sarcastic and patronising, rather than funny and enthusiastic, and vice versa.  There was quite a sad piece about a boy who was discussing racism and by changing my face I could, instead of being concerned, be bursting into tears. I like the fact that you can interpret things in your own light, put your own unique spin on things.

Why did you start acting at 8 years old?
I had always enjoyed it. My parents actually suggested LAMDA to me though. I was always flamboyant, larking around, doing little skits. I became fascinated that you could change your personality whilst on camera.

What are your aspirations for the future?
I’d love to be an animator. Something behind the scenes.

Why not acting?
I find the creative input and visual effects fascinating. I love how lighting and music can make or break a scene.

I’d like to go to University – to Escape Studios which is part of Pearson College, London. They do media, visual effects, game design and animation. I went to an open day there and it was great, I was able to use all the equipment. Whilst I don’t play games, I love the cinematics of them.

What would you say to others looking at doing LAMDA?
I’d say to do the acting because you learn how to express yourself. Others however might prefer verse and prose.

What else do you do at Seaford?
I play tennis on Saturday. I also do archery and use the gym facilities, the brand new Johnson Centre is amazing. I’m in the CCF too.

How do you balance your acting with your school work?
I use my private study time. I’m a planner too, that really helps me, I plan in the time I need to do things. I would only put myself forwards for something if I knew I would be able to do it.

Staying up-to-date with my work helps too. Seaford has really helped me. In Year 10, when I did Twelfth Night I was doing late nights and lots of revision. I was struggling on no sleep and asked myself, ‘What did I do wrong?’ and ‘What should I do? What can I change?’, I learnt and helped myself get better at the juggling.

It can be a struggle in photography to juggle the practical aspects. What I do now is look at how my other lessons can link in with it to reduce the time impact.

I love Seaford because….It’s a different school. It doesn’t only focus on one thing.
Drama is incorporated into everything. The academic side is amazing too, everyone passed English Language GCSE, that’s a massive achievement.

Alfie Whitchurch

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