Outstanding young actor Christine Clare has been announced as the winner of this year's Alan Bates Bursary.
The Manchester Metropolitan BA Acting graduate saw off 160 others, representing all of the accredited drama schools, to win the prestigious award worth £2,000.
The Alan Bates Bursary, named in honour of the Centre's much loved champion and former patron, has been running for 5 years and applications for the award have been growing exponentially since its inception. The Bursary is open to any actor under the age of thirty, graduating in 2009 from an NCDT accredited BA Acting course or an NCDT accredited 2 year diploma in Acting.
The winner receives membership of the Actors Centre for 1 year and classes to the value of £1000. They also get a year's Spotlight subscription and receive subsidies to cover other career expenses such as headshots, show reels, voice demos or a personal website.
Christine is a very gifted young actress and this bursary will help her establish her career both in Manchester and in London
Following the first round of auditions 16 candidates were chosen to attend a workshop held by the Artistic Director of the Actors Centre, Matthew Lloyd. Of these graduates, 8 were put forward to the final, which was panelled by Henry Goodman and Lindsay Duncan. Runners to the award were Ian Wych (Drama Centre), Peter Bray (Central School of Speech and Drama), and Karla Crome (Italia Conti).
“We are thrilled to announce that Christine is this year's Alan Bates Bursary winner” said Caroline Byrne, Membership Manager at the Actors centre. “She's is a very gifted young actress and this bursary will help her establish her career both in Manchester and in London'.
Christine Clare was born and raised in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She has recently graduated from Manchester Metropolitan School of Theatre. Whilst in training she appeared in The House of Blue Leaves, Harvest, Hard Times and the title role in Mary Stuart. She is currently in rehearsals for a new play called Freshers, which will be performed in Manchester's 24:7 Theatre festival in July.
This incredible honor has given me such confidence for entering the profession
Christine is delighted with the award. ‘When graduating from drama school, it's easy to feel like a little fish lost in a big pond, but winning the Alan Bates Bursary is just what I need to help keep me from drowning. This incredible honour has given me such confidence for entering the profession, and I feel ecstatic with the amount of help and support I'm receiving at the beginning of my career.'
For more information about the Alan Bates Bursary please call Caroline Byrne on 020 7632 8003