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Passionate UWTSD Alumna wants to make a positive impact to the arts and cultural sector in Wales

BA Acting graduate Elicia Axon from the University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) is collaborating with Fio on an exciting project to create a positive change in the arts and cultural sector in Wales. 

Fio is a theatre and arts company based in Cardiff, whose vision is that Global Majority people are embedded and thriving in all aspects of theatre and arts in Wales. They help to shape change by providing pathways and opportunities to develop, create and experience exciting theatre and arts. Representing contemporary diverse Welsh culture and identity, the company aims to remove barriers and offer inclusive, intersectional visions for the future.

Elicia Axon was approached by the company to join Arise – Wales Creatives – a year-long paid artist development programme focused on supporting the next generation of early-career creatives of all ages from across Wales. The company focus on working with people within the global majority, people who are underrepresented in the arts.

During the programme, Elicia was able to collaborate with other members, produce exciting projects and share stories.

She said: “Since the Arise programme Fio have been incredibly supportive offering opportunities, and this particular opportunity was special. With financial and creative support from Fio, I produced a multimedia installation that included a film, a bathtub and string. The installation was centered around self-confidence, something we as theatre makers can sometimes struggle with.”

Installation work was something Elicia was very unfamiliar with but it was something that she found appealing. 

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She said: “I was grateful that I was able to explore this from theatre making in a safe and supportive environment. I adore acting but I am also a very keen theatre maker, I like to make work that reflects me, who I am as a person. I’ve always thought that theatre is a great educational tool so to be able to create work that is not only visually stimulating but has a lesson behind it is really exciting.”

It was a vulnerable piece where Elica was able to express herself through writing and images. She had full creative control and spent 5 days R&D’ing the project in Chapter Arts Centre. 

At the end of the project the programme had a private showcase of their work where Welsh creatives from the industry were invited to join. They offered their feedback and insight into the piece, and as a result, she is now working towards developing the production further in 2024. 

Elicia said that she wouldn’t have made the most of this opportunity without the skills taught and developed through the BA Acting degree at UWTSD. 

“I am a very well rounded creative and I know that it is because of my training at UWTSD. The training you receive is incredible. They are not only teaching you to become a great actor, but they encourage you to make and create your own work. Because of my time at UWTSD I know how to efficiently communicate with actors, directors, lighting designers etc. 

“Communication is huge within theatre. I know about scheduling, how to run a rehearsal room, how to properly prepare myself for a new project, how to take care of my body and mind whilst on a job. All these things that you don’t really consider when choosing a career within acting.”

BA Acting Programme Director Lynne Seymour said: 

“It has been wonderful to see Elicia develop and grow as a creator and performer. They were always a fabulous and dedicated student who not only excelled in their studies but also made valuable industry connections with the external freelance tutors that we always bring in to teach on the course. Elicia made useful contacts during the course and has continued to build their network and embed themselves within the creative community in Cardiff and beyond. Elicia faced many challenges during their degree course as we went through the Covid lockdown and restrictions on practical rehearsal spaces, and I think their determination to thrive through these challenges has helped make them into a passionate and resilient creative.  I am so proud of all they have achieved and look forward to seeing them develop their work further.”