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Playwright Dennis Kelly receives dramatic welcome

Dated: 10 May 2018

 
 
Renowned playwright (and Barnet local) Dennis Kelly kindly visited Woodhouse College on the 3rd of May to talk to our drama students about his life, his creative process and to answer their questions about writing, acting and the theatre business.
 
Student Eray Yilmaz summed up his talk for us 
 
"Dennis talked about his journey from working in retail jobs he despised, to attending weekly sessions at the Barnet drama centre, where he developed his love for drama. Initially, he had his eyes on acting, however, in Kelly's own words, he wasn't very good.
 
After dropping out of education at the age of 16, and unsure about what to do, Kelly continued to work. He always had a deep passion for English literature, he emphasised that it was one of the only subjects he excelled at and enjoyed during his time in compulsory education. He spent many years working and writing plays and eventually at the age of 30, he graduated from Goldsmiths College, University of London with First Class Honours in Drama and Theatre Arts.
 
 
 
Dennis Kelly is now one of the most influential playwrights in the UK, with his 2008 play 'DNA' being added to the GCSE drama syllabus and his play 'Girls and Boys' being recently performed at the Royal Court, with Carey Mulligan taking the lead.
 
Kelly's journey highlights the importance of not feeling rushed and pursuing your options, he took many years to figure out what he enjoyed and has now formed a name for himself.
 
On behalf of the students that attended the talk and Woodhouse College, we are incredibly thankful to have had Dennis Kelly speak so candidly to us and give us some brilliant advice in regards to our own writing. It is incredibly inspiring to see someone who has pushed the boundaries of theatre, with brilliantly absurd, but equally important and unique plays, from the likes of his 2004 play 'Debris' to 'Love and Money' and 'Matilda the musical'." 
 
 
 
Head of drama and theatre, Hannah Johnston echoed Eray's thoughts ...
 
"A massive thank you again for coming to talk with us today. We found it fascinating, very inspiring and really interesting to hear your views on the creative process and the journey of making mistakes... and keeping going. I think the students could have gone on with their questions for hours! We look forward to reading and watching more of your fantastic work in the future (and Leo particularly is very excited about the forthcoming World War Z sequel!) Many many thanks for giving up your time, it really means a lot to us."
 
And Dennis seemed to enjoy the afternoon equally, he said  
 
"Thanks for inviting me, they’re a lovely bunch of kids, very smart and engaged so it was a real pleasure talking to them."
 
 
 


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