The Most Important Acting Job You Will Ever Do

‘Which is your most important acting job?’


A friend of mine was working with Holly Hunter; the fabulous American actor and overheard her ask this question of a young member of the cast.


Fail Forward

Failure is good. Failure is great. Failure is welcome.

I am of course talking about healthy failure.


Measure Twice, Cut Once

 I was having an impromptu lesson with my regular handyman; Mike, on how to lay a carpet rail. He said that one of the keys to a quality job was in the preparation. Immediately, my acting antenna went up.

“The principle that I stand by is this” he said, “measure twice – cut once”.



More than 90% of lung cancer cases are caused by smoking, 95% of British actors are out of work at any one time, in England, more than 81,000 households were found to be homeless during 2013/14, up to 100% of you will hate being reduced to a statistic….

You, my lovely friend, are not a number, you are a word.


Grace and Pace

I recently had the privilege of working with an old friend of mine, James (Jimmy) Hayes.

Jimmy has done more shows at the National than any other living actor and has written a fabulous book about his 50 years in the industry, called Shouting In The Evenings.

We were playing Stephano and Trinculo respectively in the RSC’s Tempest.

Jimmy is full of incredible stories and nuggets of wisdom and threw this particular gem out quite casually one night in our dressing room

‘Grace and Pace’. It really caught my ear.



And we have a winner for the Action Weekend competition…..Jennifer Carss! Jen is a graduate actor from the Manchester School of Theatre who is currently setting up a children’s theatre company. She will join a group of actors and students this weekend on a two day intensive at ICAT ( learning the principles of Mike Alfreds for FREE. There are still places left, if you would like to book on please follow the link

Keep watching this space for more insights, freebies and tips.

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I have spent the last 3 1/2 months back in Stratford On Avon with the RSC rehearsing and opening Greg Doran’s groundbreaking production of The Tempest. I have been blogging on the RSC website, Whispers From The Wings and am sharing them as posts on To You The Artist.

silk and steel


There is a principle in martial arts regarding the ability to be both forceful and yielding in equal measure. Its known as Silk and Steel.


Check out this very interesting article about creatives and work.

and the winner is….

And the Winner of the Mike Alfreds Finding Freedom competition is….