UCLan forms partnership with an acting agency and offers industry representation to four students

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has established a unique collaboration with an acting agency.

Part of the new partnership between UCLan’s BA (Hons) Acting course and Janet Hampson Personal Management (JHPM) will see a number of final year students gain professional industry representation.

The first recipients of the representation are: Amy Chung, Ben Malkin, Edward Kelly and Domante Riepsaite.

Amy, 22 from Lincolnshire, said: “I was absolutely ecstatic when I found out I’d been selected. I couldn’t believe I’d been given this sort of opportunity. I’m so grateful and excited to be represented by such a respected agency like JHPM and from all the chats and advice I’ve had I feel like I’m in safe hands with this company.”

Lytham St Annes’ resident Ben, 23, who attended St Bede’s RC Secondary School and Cardinal Newman College before starting at UCLan’s Preston Campus, commented: “Janet’s experience and contacts in the industry will not only help expose me to new opportunities such as auditions, but also help further my personal approach as a budding actor.”

Due to the outbreak of coronavirus, the contracts have been extended from a year to 18 months. This is to allow time for the creative sector to recover from the enforced shutdown.

Twenty-three-year-old Edward, from Leeds, said: “I’m very happy at the fact that someone of Janet’s high esteem would be interested in me, which is credit to the course for shaping me into the actor I am today. Representation is like a marriage it can be short or long-term, I’m confident it’s going to be the latter.”

Domante, 21 from Lithuania, added: “I was and still am beyond grateful and excited for what lies ahead! Everyone aims to be represented after graduation, it means that I now am represented by a trustworthy agency, which has great connections in the industry meaning I will have great opportunities of pursuing my career as an actor.”

Janet, who has taken on the role of Industry Liaison Officer for all UCLan’s final year acting students, is already a UCLan Leader in Residence and her role will provide a unique link between University and the professional workplace.

She opened her agency in 2019 after working as a casting director on series including Citizen Khan, Coronation Street and Class Dismissed. For the past nine years she has combined freelancing with working as a visiting lecturer, advising on casting and giving industry talks to UCLan students.

“Since first coming to UCLan to work with students on the BA (Hons) Acting course I have always championed their emerging talent,” said Janet. “From casting former students in their first TV role to recommending them to agents, I’ve been delighted to see how they progress.   Now, by offering representation in my own agency, I’m delighted to support and guide these four talented young actors as their careers take off.”

The partnership has been funded through UCLan’s Innovation Escalator scheme.

Terence Chapman, Course Leader BA (Hons) Acting, added: “This gives our final year students a real insight into all aspects of the industry along with very practical advice and career guidance throughout their last year at UCLan.”