Richard Knowles

Age: 26

What do you do?
I’m Stage Business Co-ordinator at The Old Vic Theatre in London. I manage a national leadership and employability project for 16 - 18 year olds, including creative workshops, professional teachers development and opportunities to see performances.

What shows/training did you take part in at Theatre Royal Wakefield and when?
During 2012 and 2013 I engaged with the theatre through a Learning and Participation placement.

This role allowed me to assist on different projects for young people, shadow professionals, develop creative and administrative skills and help run theatre workshops. I also assisted the development of In on the Act, which continues to enable young theatre makers to develop skills and perform on a professional stage.

I was also able to develop a range of marketing, communications, technical and facilitation skills through the placement. Each enhanced my awareness of how theatres deliver successful projects.

How did being involved with Theatre Royal Wakefield make a difference?
Through my connection to Theatre Royal Wakefield, I secured backstage employment in the theatre. I also developed the skills, knowledge and confidence to successfully transition into a full time creative role linked to my education, aspirations and interests.

Over the past three years, I have worked at two leading theatres - West Yorkshire Playhouse and The Old Vic. Both roles have drawn on the practical skills I developed with Theatre Royal Wakefield. I am immensely grateful for the relevant opportunities the team provided, and happy that I still use these vital skills in my current job.

Top tip for our current participants?
However you connect with the theatre, grab opportunities with both hands. Have a go - whether it’s paid, voluntary, or something new and daunting. You never know when you’ll get another chance, or how quickly it can lead to other things.

Richard was recently featured in The Stage, read the article here.

Box Office: 01924 211 311

Minicom (text-type users): 01924 215 522

Theatre Royal Wakefield, Drury Lane, Wakefield, West Yorkshire WF1 2TE

Wakefield Theatre Royal and Opera House was designed by Frank Matcham and opened in 1894.