MonologueSlam UK comes to Cardiff!
Performers from all backgrounds and disciplines undertake a gruelling series of auditions, before 20 of them are chosen to perform in front of an audience and to impress a panel of professionals who are in a position to progress their careers. MonologueSlam UK brings you the newest and most exciting talent in the UK!
Hosted by Dean Smith (Last Tango in Halifax)..
1 Minute Round
A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
3 Minute Round
Super Powers by Frank Thomas
Bright by Polly Wiseman
After 12 years as a mechanical engineer, an early mid-life crisis drove Gert to attempt a career as an actor. Parts were thin on the ground for an untrained 30 something. While waiting for the agent to call he worked part time as a researcher for BBC Radio. This quickly led to producing a variety of radio shows for the BBC and he stopped waiting for the phone to ring.
In 1999 he made leap into drama production as producer/director of ‘Station Road’ a daily Radio Drama for BBC Wales. It ran for nearly 3 years. He moved into television drama as assistant producer of series 1 and then producer of series 2 and 3 of ‘Not Getting Any’ BBC2 Wales’ comedy drama written by Angharad Devonald. He became Series Editor of BBC 1’s medical drama ‘Holby City’ in 2005 but eventually left the BBC and for the past 10 years has plied his trade as a freelance writer and producer. Credits include Holby City, EastEnders, Waterloo Road, Casualty , Blue Murder, River City(Scotland), Ros Na Run(Ireland) and Pobol Y Cwm. In 2012 he was commissioned to create a new series for TV3 in Ireland. ‘Deception’ aired in January 2013. Last year he was a mentor on the ‘Made in Wales’ short film project and will be returning to that role for a second series.
He recently returned to the BBC and is currently a producer on medical drama Casualty.
Mark Jermin, Director of the Mark Jermin Stage School and Mark Jermin Management
The Mark Jermin Stage School is now the largest and fastest growing specialist performing arts educational institution in the UK. Over the years, Mark has opened many more stage schools across South Wales and more recently into England. Today, there are nine individual schools in Swansea, Carmarthen, Llanelli, Port Talbot, Penarth, Pontypridd and Cardiff and London.
In January, 2009, Mark Jermin Management officially opened. The head office of Mark Jermin Management is based in Swansea with a satellite office in London.
Stage school students represented by the management agency have landed leading roles in key TV productions such as Eastenders, Waterloo Road, Casualty, Tess of the D’Urbevilles, Dr Who, Torchwood, Pobyl-y-Cwm, Skins and Stella. Mark Jermin students are also regularly cast in high profile films, these have included: Love Actually, About a Boy, Four Feathers, Mr Nice, the Big I Am, Angus Thongs and Perfect Snogging and more recently featured roles in Hunky Dory, Submarine and The Iron Lady.
The success and reputation of the agency is now so well recognised within the industry, Mark Jermin Management now represents adults as well as young people and often the first choice for casting among the top UK casting directors and producers. Today the agency is responsible for placing more than 400 performers each week across a variety of roles in the broadcast and stage media. Mark runs regular workshops on behalf of casting directors and when required he personally casts young and adult performers in key roles for TV, radio, film and stage companies.
John McGrath – Artistic Director of National Theatre Wales
John McGrath is the founding Artistic Director of National Theatre Wales. He has also worked as a theatre director in New York, London and Manchester. From 1999-2008 he was Artistic Director of Contact Theatre, Manchester. He trained and worked in New York for several years, including a stint as Associate Director of leading experimental company Mabou Mines. As a director, he has worked with a wide range of artists including poet Lemn Sissay (Storm, Something Dark and Why I Don’t Hate White People) and hip-hop theatre artist Benji Reid (b like water).
For National Theatre Wales, he has directed A Good Night Out in the Valleys, Love Steals Us From Loneliness, The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning, In Water I’m Weightless and The Opportunity of Efficiency (produced by the New National Theatre, Tokyo). In 2004 he published a book about art in the surveillance age, Loving Big Brother: Performance, Privacy and Surveillance Space, and in 2005 was awarded the National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts (NESTA) Cultural Leadership Award.
Sam Jones – Casting Director – National Theatre Wales
Sam’s first job in casting was as a Casting Assistant for the Royal Shakespeare Company. Subsequently she worked as an Assistant to various prestigious Casting Directors including Joyce Nettles, Michelle Guish and Siobhan Bracke. In 1995, as Casting Director for the Almeida Theatre, she cast several plays including: 1953 directed by Patrick Marber, VENICE PRESERVED directed by Ian McDiarmid and the infamous GANGSTER NO. 1 directed by Jonathan Kent.
On leaving the Almeida she worked on the ’97 Globe Theatre season with Siobhan Bracke and was then invited by Terry Hands to become Casting Director for Clwyd Theatr Cymru. She went on to cast his first two seasons for the theatre which won the 1998 TMA Best Theatre Award.
Concurrently she expanded her freelance career casting plays for, among others, English Touring Theatre, The Bristol Old Vic, Bath Theatre Royal, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Sheffield Crucible, Plymouth Theatre Royal, Salisbury Playhouse, Contact Theatre, Manchester, Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith, Tricycle, The Almeida Theatre, The Opera Group and the Teatrul Dramatic Constantza, Romania.
She subsequently became Head of Casting at the Royal Shakespeare Company and presided over the multi-award winning Histories Company, David Tennant’s HAMLET and Sir Ian McEllan’s KING LEAR, among others. On leaving there she was invited to become Casting Director for the newly formed National Theatre Wales – already multi-award winning and now in its fourth year of productions.