Acting on young talent

TWO young John Paul College students have won this year’s Slater & Gordon Drama Scholarships to the Coffs Harbour Actors Studio.

Connor Doherty and Paige Cook, both in Year 7, will each receive $750 to cover their fees for the year at the local acting school.

Heather McKinnon, the Slater & Gordon practice group leader in Coffs Harbour, said the scholarships were designed to help school children from low-income families develop their acting and life skills.

“This is the second year Slater & Gordon has offered the scholarships to this impressive acting school,” Ms McKinnon said.

“Teamwork, trusting others and leadership are all among the valuable skills kids learn during acting classes.

“The connection between children being involved in performance and drama and their self-worth is well-known.

“This is a great opportunity for a couple of young students to go on and develop skills that will help them in all areas of their lives.”

The Young Actors Studio has been operating in Coffs Harbour for two years and has more than 50 students from across the community.

Thirteen-year-old Connor Doherty, the eldest of six children, said drama classes had made him more confident and helped him make friends.

“At school I was too shy to speak in public but now I am able to stand up in front of classmates and give speeches,” he said.

Paige Cook, 13, said her drama classes helped her with schoolwork, performing and public speaking at school.

“Drama classes have made me much more confident and the techniques I have learnt make it much easier for me to speak in public,” Paige said.

Paige has been cast as Alice in this year’s production of Alice in Wonderland, which opens in term two.

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