Tommy Sim'aan in Her Naked Skin

Final year acting student wins prestigious training bursaries

Published on:
2nd April 2020

The School is delighted to announce that Tommy Sim’aan, a final year FdA Professional Acting student, has fought off stiff competition to win two training bursaries, awarded as part of Laurence Olivier Bursary Scheme.

Tommy is the recipient of bursaries from both the Behrens Foundation and the Casting Directors’ Guild, which are awarded annually as part of the scheme. In total, 18 drama school students from across the UK have been awarded bursaries, which provide financial support to exceptional students who are facing financial difficulties in their final year of drama school.

Drama school principals across the UK nominate students, who are then auditioned on a West End stage and interviewed by a panel of theatre industry professionals, led by producer Lee Menzies, Chair of the Laurence Olivier Bursaries Committee. This year’s auditions took place at St Martin’s Theatre.

Commenting on the scheme, Lee Menzies, the Chair of the Bursaries Committee said: ‘It is fantastic to be able to award the Laurence Olivier Bursaries each year, and I want to thank all the generous donors who, alongside the Society of London Theatre, are committed to helping talented individuals overcome financial hardship and realise their potential.

‘The impressive list of past bursary winners, some of whom have gone on become household names, demonstrates the importance of recognising and supporting talent from all backgrounds, ensuring theatre and the creative arts continue to thrive in this country.’

BA Professional Acting Student Tommy Sim'aan

Main image: Tommy as Dr Klein in spring grad show Her Naked Skin at Circomedia. Photo by Ed Felton.

Headshot by Jon Holloway

I’m constantly delighted by the talent, commitment and drive of our students. Their curiosity and joy in the work gives us all energy and keeps me on my toes! My goal is to ensure that their voices serve their acting - both in theatre and recorded media. They need to be able to project, learn accents, respond to a wide variety of texts and have a voice that is healthy and be able to sustain long tours and tough filming schedules. This involves them working extremely hard – but having fun as well. When the new students see the final year students in production for the first time I know they’ll come into class the next day fully understanding the high standard they’re working to achieve. Carol Fairlamb, Head of Voice