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News > Alumni News > Head of Drama interviews Arts and Culture Heroes

Head of Drama interviews Arts and Culture Heroes

Mr Matt King Sayce catches up with Simon Naylor, Holly Ball, Isah-Levi Roach, Gitika Buttoo and Mark Johnson.
17 Mar 2021
Alumni News


I’m Matt King-Sayce, Head of Drama, and I oversee our Arts and Culture Network, which includes, Drama, Music, Art, Dance, Photography, Design, Textiles, Visual Arts and Creative Writing. In these tough times, engaging in arts and culture is of paramount importance to young people. Not only, does it provide them with a stimulating platform to express their ideas creatively, but it also develops their ‘soft skills’, including communication, problem-solving, organisation and interpersonal skills.

Furthermore, studies have shown that an involvement in arts and cultural activities has a marked positive improvement on mental health. At Stockport Grammar School, we are committed to creating exciting and innovative opportunities within the arts to support and nurture pupils, both within the curriculum and beyond, to enable them to thrive. We are currently on the journey to gain Artsmark status and have introduced Arts Award into our co-curricular provision. As well as the whole school productions, exhibitions, recitals, concerts and workshops, we are heavily involved in working with the local community to foster links between the school and other organisations to provide a sustained arts and cultural provision for our pupils and all young people throughout the Stockport area.

We are working closely with Curious Minds, the North West bridge organisation for Arts Council England on a number of ventures, including leading Stockport’s Local Cultural Education Partnership (LCEP), to engage our pupils in arts and cultural projects and show them how these can support their personal development and offer them skills which are essential for employment beyond careers within the arts. We are hoping you will be able to support us by supporting some of our pupils by talking to them about careers within the arts and possibly offering work shadowing opportunities.

Interviews coming up - Sign up to the SGS Arts and Culture Club to find out when they are released! 

Simon Naylor – Matt King- Sayce had the opportunity to speak with Artistic Director of 53Two Theatre Company, Simon Naylor, to discuss how his involvement in the arts led to a career in TV, Film and Theatre.

Isah-Levi Roach – Matt King-Sayce talks to The Children and Young People’s Co-ordinator from The Royal Exchange about how Drama made him self-motivated, achieving success without following the traditional University route.

Gitika Buttoo – Matt King-Sayce talks to British Indian theatre director, Gitika Buttoo about her resilience to overcome cultural barriers to work with prestigious theatre companies, including National Theatre and Birmingham Opera Company before becoming Associate Director & Engagement Manager of LUNG Theatre.

Mark Johnson – Matt King-Sayce talks to co-host of the ‘There’s no I’ podcast and Head of Performance at a top independent school in London about how his interest in amateur theatre led him work in advertising, on stage and screen before becoming an educator.

Holly Ball – Matt King-Sayce catches up with Old Stopfordian and Head of Careers and Employability at Curious Minds about the support of her family and her own grit to work in a non-performance role in theatre without opportunities at school.


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