The team

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Artistic Director

With a passion for drama since a very young age, Claire formed Bristol Academy of Drama to introduce children to all genres of performance. She has a wealth of theatre experience, both professional and non professional, both on and off stage.  She is an award winning actress and has enjoyed critical success as a director and producer. With a First Class Drama degree she has worked as a Key Stage 3 Drama Teacher as well as a freelance LAMDA teacher. She is thrilled to be offering this new and exciting way of engaging with the world of theatre.



Facilitator/Private Lessons Teacher

Jac is a filmmaker, musician and writer based in Bristol and London. After graduating from East 15 he co-founded the award theatre company When I Say Jump, winning awards from Ideas tap, NSDF and the Student Playwriting Competition and has performed around the UK (The Southwark Playhouse, Old Joint Stock, Pleasance Theatre Islington, Wardrobe Theatre). With a background in devising and group orientated practise, Jac is passionate about cultivating an environment where the students feel free to express themselves using music, creative writing and performance. Jac is incredibly excited to be part of BAD and passionate about helping the students discover their voices and creativity.


Writer in Residence/Assistant Facilitator

Having gained an English Literature degree from Durham University, Bea graduated from Actor Training at Fourth Monkey in London and now works as an Actor/ Writer/Director in London. She is currently working part of the Core Company for Arrows and Traps Theatre Company  She loves to adapt and update classic literature as well as producing new writing and has recently written and performed a One Woman Show for Cobalt Theatre to critical acclaim. Her recently performed works include an adaptation of Alice in Wonderland and a new play "Twisted Fairytales" which was perform to sell out audiences in Edinburgh.


Assistant Facilitator

Ben is a Bristol-based Actor, Writer and Producer with a degree in Drama and Acting.

Before graduating, Ben co-formed the theatre company Flying Chairs and produced ‘A Series of Short Plays’ at the Lightship Theatre in 2019. Ben is currently producing and acting in Flying Chairs upcoming show which will be performed in 2021. Outside of his work with Flying Chairs, he has performed in Re-imagine Theatre’s ‘Wasted’ and at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in ‘No Fun and Games’ which was nominated for the 2019 Derek Awards.


Assistant Facilitator

Dom is a musician, performer and director for children’s theatre. A product of the Made in Bristol programme at the Bristol Old Vic, he has since led and assisted workshops for Historic England, Bristol Old Vic, Drama Power and Unique Voice. In 2019, Dom went on a national tour with ROMANS! - an immersive theatre show by Mufti Games supported by the Royal Shakespeare Company. A high-energy sense of play is central to all the workshops he runs for all ages and he’s excited to introduce the B.A.D students to the huge catalogue of games he’s picked up over the years.

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Associate Artist

Anna Friend has been working as a Director and teacher for the past 12 years after completing her PGCE at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. She has always been passionate about bringing theatre into everyone's everyday experience and making it accessible and exciting for audiences and participants alike. She has founded and run two Youth Theatre companies, inspiring many members to continue onto further training in the arts. Quirky Bird Theatre launched in November 2015 and since then has gained a reputation for compelling, surprising theatre with young actors at the heart of it. She directed the phenomenal Wroughton Passion Play from Gatecrash Theatre and 'Tusk Tusk' which won several awards at the All England Theatre Festival. Most recently she has directed DNA by Dennis Kelly and That Face by Polly Stenham which both tour schools and colleges across the UK. Other projects include Spur of the Moment by Anya Reiss at the Shoebox Theatre, Heartbreak Beautiful by Christopher William Hill and the 2018 Old Town Nativity. Anna is also Resident Director at one of Bristol's much loved studio theatre's, The Alma Tavern Theatre. She directed and performed in their debut homegrown production of 'Two' by Jim Cartwright and has received 5* reviews for her adaptation of the Ibsen classic 'A Dolls House' and 'flawless' interpretation of Mike Leigh's 'Abigail's Party'. Most recently she starred in the one woman tour-de-force 'Shirley Valentine' by Willy Russell which is set to return to the stage in November 2020.

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Administrator/Cover Facilitator

Carlota is a maker and facilitator based in Bristol and passionate about working with young people and communities. With a background in physical and experimental theatre, Carlota has performed in various venues including Bristol Old Vic, Tobacco Factory Theatres, Marylebone Theatre in London and National Theatre Portugal. She has a First Class Degree in Acting and has starred in several short films, as well as making her own. She co-directed and choreographed Play The Goat's show Off-Peak at Bristol Old Vic.


Production Manager

Helen has a wealth of theatre experience as both a performer, director, producer and stage hand.  Having been a key member of non professional theatre groups in Bristol she is now relishing the chance share this knowledge with young people.

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Holly is a freelance Performer, Theatre Maker and Facilitator with over 15 years experience working with children and young people in school and community settings across the UK and in India, Taiwan and Switzerland. Holly has worked for companies including Bristol Old Vic; Fifth Word; Freshwater Theatre; Now press Play; Access All Areas and Gingerline, as well as founding her own theatre company Join the Dots - creating storytelling shows, workshops and tailor-made theatre projects with and for young people since 2012. Holly also produces a comedy night and performs regularly with her long-form improv team Rhinoceros, as well as performing sketch comedy with Release the Clowns and The Biscuit Barrel. Holly’s wide range of skills include devising, improvisation, storytelling, clowning, puppetry, mask, ensemble, design and prop making. Holly is passionate about using the power of drama to empower, inspire and connect people.



Kate is a freelance Theatre Maker, Director and Facilitator based in Bristol who specialises in making work with, for and by Young People. She has extensive experience in outreach and participation both in theatre and school settings, and is passionate about empowering young voices and giving them a platform to make ambitious, bold and challenging theatre. Recent Directing projects include Antigone (The Egg Theatre), Schools Takeover Project (Tobacco Factory Theatres), Happimess (Edinburgh Fringe), Courtyard Opening (The V&A Museum), as well as making work with her company Little Echo. She currently facilitates for organisations including; National Youth Theatre, G64 Theatre, The Egg - Bath Theatre Academy, Shakespeare Schools Festival, Bigfoot Arts Education, Unique Voice and One Day Creative.


Writer in Residence

Adam Elms read Drama and English Literature at UWE, where he was awarded the Drama Prize. He is an Associate Artist of Blueprint Theatre in London and Schoolhouse Productions in Bristol, and was an Associate at acclaimed site-specific company, Theatre Mill, for four years. 


He has over fifty credits in theatre as an actor around the UK and abroad, appearing in everything from Shakespeare to Pinter, farce to Agatha Christie, and panto to Jacobean tragedy, via Dario Fo, Oscar Wilde, Mike Leigh, and many more. His work as an actor in premières of new writing include, recently: 'Legacy' (Blueprint/Rich Mix); 'Libby's Eyes' (The Bunker); D'Eon (Hope Mill, Manchester); and 'Love & Death' (SKINT/Unforced Errors). Adam will play Off-Broadway in Alan Ayckbourn's 'Absurd Person Singular' in December. 


His playwriting credits include work for the Old Red Lion, Park Theatre, Drayton Arms, SKINT Festival in Bristol and Wireless Theatre Company. Having worked in young people's theatre regularly as an actor, writer, and workshop leader, Adam is very passionate about the role the arts can play in a child's development and is delighted to be part of the team at the wonderful BAD. 


Assistant Facilitator

Zelda has been an enthusiastic actor since the age of 7, when she began to attend  Musical theatre classes. She is now studying her A levels at QEH where she has carried on her passion for drama as one of her subjects. She is involved in film and stage performances inside and outside of school which she absolutely loves and hopes to continue with as a career! Zelda loves the  energy,  enthusiasm and creativity the children bring to the classes each week, and it  brings her joy  to see them  build in confidence as they develop their acting skills.


Assistant Facilitator

Kathryn is currently studying for a BA in 'Theatre and English' at the University of Bristol with the aim of furthering her skills as a young theatre maker, director and Theatre Facilitator. During her studies, she has acted, directed and produced multiple performances in various theatres around Bristol, worked with people of all ages, built and deconstructed sets with the company 'Scenic' and kickstarted her own student theatre company 'Theatre-19'. She absolutely loves working with young people and looks forward to the range of creativity, excitement and joy that the children bring to the sessions each week.

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Cover Facilitator

Clara Collett graduated in 2014 from Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts with a BA Honours in Community Drama. Clara specialises in facilitating and directing, and works mainly with children and young people to provide opportunities within the arts. Her skills lay mainly in delivering creative and innovative projects utilising drama, movement, music and creative writing. After graduating she set up her own theatre company Pip Theatre. Pip provides fun and fresh activities for young people of all ages, within a community, a school and festivals. She has also collaborated with Chol Theatre, Uprising Manchester and has run storytelling workshops at Latitude, Glastonbury and Deershed Festival. In her spare time she loves to travel the world and learn different cookery skills and is a bit of Wiz in the kitchen!


Cover Facilitator

Hannah-Rose grew up in Norwich and started acting and performing at the age of two. She spent 10 childhood years training with the Norwich Theatre Royal until the age of 18, obtained a BTEC in performing arts and then completed an Associate Diploma in Performance Arts.

Hannah-Rose has been working as a drama facilitator for six years. Throughout this time she has run drama sessions for students aged 2-21 in schools and nurseries across Norfolk. Hannah-Rose has taught for Stagecoach all over the country and works as a freelance LAMDA teacher .  Alongside her teaching, Hannah-Rose is also Assistant Producer for a local theatre company, creating new exciting accessible theatre for all types of audiences.

Hannah-Rose says "I love working with and encouraging young people. I know how important drama can be in the development of young people as I was a very shy child myself. I’m passionate about teaching all aspects of acting and theatre skills. I think it is important to do so whilst having lots of fun and in a safe environment so the students can fully express themselves and create some amazing theatre. "