Pendleton Sixth Form College welcomes new Associate Artistic Director
26th February 2021
This February Pendleton Sixth Form College welcomed new Associate Artistic Director, Michael Peavoy, to the halls of the college.
Leaving Pendleton Sixth Form College with a BTEC National Diploma in Musical Theatre in 2007, Michael progressed on to training as an actor at the prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA). Upon graduating in 2010, he went straight to work with Sir Nicholas Hytner at the National Theatre (Hamlet) before going on to play Tony in Billy Elliot on the West End.
Michael has worked on stages around the country, including Manchester’s own Royal Exchange (Sweeney Todd, Into the Woods, Britannia Waives the Rules) leading roles at the Octagon Theatre in Bolton (Summer Holiday, Jane Eyre, Hamlet, Tennant of Wildfell Hall) as well as featured roles on television (The Five, Lewis, The Muskateers, Our World War) and Radio for the BBC (Stone, Utopia, My Mothers Daughter).
Coming back to the college after 14 years, Michael explained: “Now feels like the right time to be heading home to Salford to give back to a college that has given me, and so many others, so much. Without Pendleton Sixth Form College I would never have found myself at RADA or treading the boards of the National Theatre or the West End, working with, and alongside, some of the most wonderful, inspiring, talented, and celebrated artists in the country. I’ve been extremely privileged to have had those experiences, which this college enabled me to achieve. I’m so excited to share all that experience with our students.”
Whilst training, Michael was the winner of the Stephen Sondheim Society Students Performer of the Year Award in 2009. He has also taught and directed at several drama schools and colleges and worked with some of the West End’s top casting directors.
Michael has also produced several new, British musicals (The Happy Prince, the Buskers Opera, A-Z of Mrs P) and numerous concerts, cabarets and festivals including work at Soho Theatre and Park Theatre in London. Michael said: “My work as a producer gave me a real understanding of the inner workings of the industry and how all the cogs fit together to make the machine work.”
“I think it’s important to appreciate all aspects of the process of putting a show, a film or a TV programme on – something I wish I knew much earlier on to take the pressure off me as a performer and understand there’s a whole team of people working together to create whatever it is that’s being presented. What you see on stage, or on television, is only the tip of the iceberg. I can’t wait to show our students every role and opportunity available to them and to give them the chance to explore them all within the college environment.”Michael Peavoy, Associate Artistic Director
Ready to bring his vast experience of producing shows to Pendleton, Michael explained: “Alongside the vast number of shows, concerts, cabarets and events we will produce at Pendleton, which will continue to be of the highest standard that our audiences have come to expect, we’ll be giving students the opportunity to explore all corners of the industries they want to head into through an extended enrichment programme. With regular opportunities to work one on one with myself and the brilliant Neil Bennett, visiting guest artists and Pendleton Alumni leading masterclasses and Q&As we will fill our students with as much passion and knowledge as we can muster so they’re ready to carve their own path when they leave us.”
He added: “I really think Pendleton Sixth Form College and the School of Theatre is still, as it has been for a long time now, the place to begin your journey into the world of Performing Arts.”
Launching into his role at the end of February, Michael’s aim is to help shape the creative landscape for generations to come. He added: “My hope is to empower our students to not only be the best performers, technicians or dancers they can be, but to be active, confident and passionate members of the artistic community that will go on to shape the creative landscape for years to come.
“Our students are the artistic leaders of the future and the skills they will learn at Pendleton Sixth Form College won’t just help them put on a good show, but help all of us to better understand the world we live in through the stories they help to tell, be that through working on stage, off stage or on the cobbles of Corrie. The global pandemic will have a lasting effect on the creative industries and, in years to come, we’ll be turning to this generation, and future generations, to lead the way.”
If you are interested in studying on one of our Performing Arts courses, apply now or contact our admissions team on 0161 631 5050.