Weston College lecturer performs in his own musical showcase at London's Landor Theatre
By YouPR | Thursday, March 14, 2013, 10:21
Weston College performing arts lecturer Andy Collyer has expanded his talents from the classroom to a London theatre via a production of his own songs.
Andy Collyer, Musical Theatre lecturer
Andy, who lectures in Musical Theatre, was invited to showcase his talent at Clapham's Landor Theatre in a production entitled 'Accidental Songs: The Words and Music of Andy Collyer."
The performance, on March 3, was part of a season of new writing showcasing British writing and performing talent, and featured current and former Weston College performing arts students.
Andy, 52, has been writing songs since he was 12 and has been involved in many aspects of musical theatre. The Landor Theatre showcase was an hour long and featured songs from various parts of his career, including a children's show about Santa Claus and an interactive musical about speed dating.
He was invited by producer Katie Lipson to perform his songs and she suggested using Weston College students.
Andy said: "In these situations you'd normally use professionals but I know how good our students are, so it was a pleasure to ask them to perform my work. Some are now based in London, so that was useful, but we only had a a couple of hours to rehearse before the show began.
"As I expected they were fantastic and they sang my songs with humour and pathos. Personally I don't like performing but I did sing the opening number, which was a joke about me as a 'new writer', aged 52!"
One of the former students working alongside Andy was Sasha Latoyah, who has already had professional experience in the musical 'Rent', at London's Greenwich Theatre. She and Andy are now planning to work on a one-woman show about the life of jazz singer Billie Holliday.
Andy is one of the College's more colourful characters, and quite often wears a kilt to work. Born in Felixstowe, he studied Music at Liverpool University and after graduating came to teach at Weston College in the mid 1980s. He then attended Central School of Speech and Drama and lectured at various colleges in the South West before returning to Weston four years ago.
He added: "It was an incredible opportunity for me to be able to showcase my work in a London venue, and also to be able to offer Weston students a professional credit on their CV. The audience, which contained a high proportion of musical theatre performers, creative and producers, was highly impressed with both my writing and the students' performances."
Those taking part alongside Andy included Sasha Latoyah (ex-BA student), Aemilia Owen, Jordan Ramroop (both ex-FdA students), Corrine Priest, Laura Hawkins (both current FdA students) and bass guitar by Peter Tyler (College technician)