In 1996 the first week-long “Lights, Music, Action!” Summer School took place and proved to be so popular we’ve never looked back. This course has since expanded to offer students and adults the chance to study the many areas of performing arts, including: Acting, Singing, Dancing, Instrumental and Technical.
The progression to a weekly event was by popular request, and in 2000 the LMA Stage School was born. LMA Stage School is privileged to have the use of King Edward VI Upper School; we gratefully acknowledge the support of the Headmaster Geoff Barton, and of the Performing Arts faculty.
Please contact LMA for more information or to request a brochure.
Classes Available at LMA Stage School
Vocalists : It is essential for all singers to be able to use their voices safely; it is rewarding to find the voice quality and style of singing that you enjoy the most. Classes cover technical warm-ups, and issues such as breath control, studying lyrics, expanding your vocal range and repertoire. Body-awareness and presentation are important: choreography and microphone technique are incorporated where appropriate. It is not necessary to be able to read music in order to benefit from these classes.
Folk Group – for vocalists wishing to explore folk music in a group environment.
Contemporary Vocals – for the band singers or solo vocalists. Performers cover a wide range of popular songs working individually and in groups to develop the voice safely and to learn the basics of harmony singing.
Musical Theatre / Cabaret – for the Musical-lovers. This singing / dancing / acting class explores a variety of musicals and cabaret styles from all eras, giving a broad understanding of plots, characters, dance-styles, chorus and solo-work.
Adult Musical Theatre / Cabaret – an adult group, singing varied repertoire incorporating solos and backing vocals, often with a small live band. Previous enterprises include a “Commitments Tribute Night”, performed in conjunction with the “LMA Stage Band”.
Festivals and Musical Theatre exams are offered during the year as an optional extra.
Actors : The acting part of the School includes the opportunity to study skills such as voice projection, accents, body awareness, character study, and teamwork. Actors are involved in the exploration of a number of different styles, from traditional classics such as Greek tragedy and Shakespeare, to favourite contemporary comedy such as The Fast Show, Fawlty Towers, Monty Python and with a strong emphasis on acquiring confidence through improvisation. Students are put through their paces in a range of different performance media: e.g. radio and video recordings as well as more traditional stage work. Though many will want just to act, there is also the opportunity to learn in class how to direct and stage-manage, and to assist in a junior capacity on Production Teams for some of the larger shows.
Acting Classes at LMA typically include a variety of games and group exercises aimed at developing confidence and the ability to work as part of a team. We explore a a mix of script work, which helps students with sight reading and confidence in reading aloud, along with physical theatre and improvisation. Students work towards fully developed pieces of theatre that form part of the LMA showcase at the end of each term.
Festivals and LAMDA exams are offered during the year as an optional extra.
Dancers : Our Dance Classes at LMA cover a range of techniques and styles to develop coordination, musicality and confidence. We cover dance styles used in musical theatre such as jazz, as well modern dance styles such as urban and contemporary. The students learn to work as team whilst developing their individual dance skills as the classes are designed to suit students of varying experience and skill levels.
Advanced students are encouraged to develop skills as choreographers, and extra supporting studies are covered as appropriate to complement the vocal classes. More unusual dance forms will be offered in one-off workshops, or courses where there is popular demand.
Festivals and Dance exams are offered during the year as an optional extra.
LMA Stage Band : This incorporates musicians of all ages / standards. It is specially tailored to allow players to explore band music a variety of styles, in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Improvisation is also encouraged at various levels, and singers brought in from time to time, to extend the range of styles available.
Private one to one lessons : Individual lessons in Singing (Classical, Musical Theatre & Jazz), Acoustic Guitar, Acting, Speech & Drama, Dance (Various Disciplines), Music Theory, Composition, Piano, Saxophone & Flute are available throughout the year: depending on availability of tutors. Prices and availability on application.
Workshops : Various workshops are available for those who wish to study more specialised aspects of stage-work. At appropriate times of the year, audition technique workshops are held to help those interested in applying for further education or professional work.
Meet The LMA Tutors
Phil Robson : Founder / Director, Band and Technical Tutor
Phil trained at Huddersfield University gaining the Performer’s Diploma in music and since then the Performer’s Diploma of Trinity College, London. Phil is currently based in Bury St. Edmunds where he is in demand as a freelance flute / saxophone teacher and performer. In December 2000 Phil opened ‘Fish and Bell Studios’, a digital recording studio and sound company, and rapidly became known as a technician / consultant and sound engineer. Phil is a qualified First Aider.
Sarah Berrington : Dance Tutor
Sarah began dancing at the age of 4 and is now an A.I.D.T.A dance teacher. She runs her own dance school ‘Soul Dance Moves‘ and is a dance tutor at Conservatoire East- West Suffolk College and Hazelwood Dance School. Sarah began her training at the Angela Morgan School of Dance in Bury St Edmunds and she went on to train in Commercial Dance and Musical Theatre at Dolphin Dance Studios in Liverpool. In Liverpool she also carried out her teacher training, qualifying at Advanced 2 level in I.S.T.D Modern, Tap and Ballet and Associates in I.D.T.A . (Ballet, Tap and Freestyle). Before returning to Bury St Edmunds to begin her teaching career Sarah worked as a dancer and appeared in various music videos, cabaret shows, corporate events and pantomimes. Sarah is a qualified First Aider.
Helen Slade : Acting
Helen is a enthusiastic actress and musical theatre performer. She is currently in her final year of professional Musical Theatre training at Performance Preparation Academy, Guildford. As a child she also attended LMA, learning the valuable skills she learnt to get in to full time drama school. She has also been a member of the National Youth Music Theatre as a teenager. Performing Sweeney Todd the musical in London (2010-2011). Her recent roles include Miss Wilde (Flashdance, The Electric Theatre Guildford) and Fräulein Schneider (Cabaret, Bellerby Studio Theatre Guildford).
Helen has gained her ATCL diploma in Musical Theatre with distinction and is currently working towards her LTCL diploma qualification. She thoroughly enjoys teaching at LMA and hopes to inspire some students to consider performing as a career.
Mark Jefferson : Musical Theatre
Mark was brought up in Dudley, West Midlands and studied piano with Molly Childs. He then went on to read music at the Universities of Surrey and East Anglia. Whilst in London, he studied piano with Peter Croser and organ with Richard Stangroom. It was his work with the latter that led to a deep and abiding interest in Choral Conducting and the completion of a Master of Music Degree in Choral and Orchestral Conducting with Professor Peter Aston. As an accompanist, he was an organ scholar at three London colleges. He has worked with teachers at both the Royal Academy and the Royal College of Music. He has performed at many well known venues in the UK and across Europe both as a conductor of choirs and orchestras and as an instrumentalist. He has worked and studied with conductors such as Owain Arwel Hughes, Jeremy Jackman and Kuno Areng. Locally, Mark is currently the conductor of St. Edmundsbury Male Voice Choir, one of the largest male voice choirs in the country. As a musical director, Mark worked as a lecturer of music theatre and voice at the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts, Clapham and has many years experience musically directing both professional and amateur productions in a wide range of musical theatre repertoire having MD’d 48 different shows. Locally Mark has musically directed both Bury Operatic Society and the Irving Stage Company. Mark was the Musical Director for the Irving Stage Company for 23 years.
Edna Robson : Administrator / Director.
With a PhD in zoology, Edna brings to LMA her specialist knowledge of animals, children and parasites. Her lifetime experience in bringing up two performing arts mad children, managing health and safety in a construction company, coupled with her extensive knowledge on the most absurd of subjects has set her in good stead for the barrage of paperwork and bizarre questions that LMA throws at her. Edna is also a qualified First Aider.
The Lights, Music, Action! Stage School has extensive contacts not just throughout East Anglia, but also nationally and internationally. Cabarets, music halls, after-supper entertainment, murder mystery suppers, fetes and carnivals constitute regular performing events across the region. Large-scale productions and concerts have taken place at regional theatres in Bury St. Edmunds, Cambridge, Newmarket and East London, Snape Maltings, the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Royal Festival Hall and Royal Albert Hall, and the London Palladium.
LMA Students have gone on to study at some of the most prestigious colleges – including the Royal Academy of Music, the Guildhall School of Music, Trinity College, Guildford School of Acting, Laine, Doreen Bird, the Millennium College, Mountview, the Scottish Academy, Arts Ed and universities across the UK.
LMA has turned out a vast range of professional musicians, actors and dancers – some in high profile employment. Past acting students have set up theatrical companies, taken jobs as technicians, performed at the Edinburgh festival – to high critical acclaim – and appeared on Television and Radio.
A number of past LMA students have gone on to run their own theatre companies (often returning to teach a class or workshop at LMA), others have taken jobs as technicians, performed at the Edinburgh festival, found work in the tv and film industry, or continue to create as part of their career (and older Llamas will remember a certain X-factor winner). Wherever their paths may lead, we hope all students will retain the sense of wonder and confidence that exploring the world of the performing arts can awaken, and the wide range of skills which can be gained from discovering a little Lights, Music, Action!
LMA Stage School Ltd. Registered Company No: 05318325. Registered in England. Registered Office Address : 89 High Street, Hadleigh, Suffolk, IP7 5EA.