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Anna Izquierdo

Creative Director, Producer, Writer and Facilitator

Certificates: BA (Hons) Acting: Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama. Enhanced DBS, 12hr Paediatric First Aid, Level 3 Safeguarding for Children


Anna is Founder of White Rabbit Drama Club and Twickenham Youth Theatre and has over 20 years experience in The Arts. Her love of drama grew as a teenager attending Manchester Youth Theatre and she spent many happy years performing at MYT and in community theatre before attending Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, where she graduated in 2004, with BA (Hons) in Acting. Following graduation, she performed in short films, BBC Comedy and theatre in education and wrote, produced & performed in a series of plays for Edinburgh, Brighton and London Fringe described as 'One to Watch' by The Stage and 'sleek, streamlined and utterly compelling' by the Scotsman Newspaper.


Anna & Co-Founder Katie established White Rabbit Drama Club in 2017 with the aim of teaching primary children the skills & values used in Devising & Improvisation and this style of teaching struck a chord with members, growing from an original class of 8 to almost 150 pupils within 4 years. With many of WRDC's original pupils in secondary school and having seen first hand the challenges that young people faced during the pandemic, 2021 felt like the perfect time to offer theatre based sessions for older pupils that incorporate these holistic & invaluable drama techniques. She is incredibly proud of the achievements of TYT so far and excited to be entering 2022-2023 with such a strong and supportive ensemble of facilitators & members.

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Laura-May Hassan

Youth Theatre Manager, Director & Facilitator

Certificates: First Class degree, Drama and Applied Theatre, St Mary's University. Enhanced DBS, 12hr Paediatric First Aid


Laura-May graduated from St Mary's University in 2019 with a First Class degree in Applied Theatre and continues to develop her skills in singing, acting & directing. An experienced freelance drama facilitator, LM has 6 years experience leading sessions for local drama schools & youth groups and, in 2020, became the Director of Richmond Shakespeare Society's Young Actor's Company and RSS Juniors.  With a passion for improvisation, Laura-May aims to create an engaging environment that empowers pupils to experiment with new ideas and to learn the value of support & respect for others whilst creating new and exciting work.

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Samantha Pears

Creative Learning Officer, Director & Facilitator

Certificates: BA (Hons) Acting: London College of Music. Enhanced DBS, 12hr Paediatric First Aid

Samantha is an Actor & Director with over 10 years experience working with children and young people. She launched TYT alongside Anna and Laura-May in August 2021 and has helped to guide members and consistently shape new work with an ethos of the playful, positive, resilient and supportive theatre we aim to be. 


As an Assistant Director for ATE Superweeks, an educational charity offering holiday camps for children across the UK, Sam is well placed as our Creative Learning Officer. A role that requires empathy and a sense of playfulness, combined with a genuine love of learning and passion for connecting and engaging young people with the characters and worlds of stories and plays, whilst enhancing their learning not just at TYT, but in all areas of school and day to day life.​

Following graduation, Samantha performed in plays at the Chiswick and Chapel Playhouse & Theatro Technis, and has taken part in scratch nights on the London Fringe.  In 2021 she Directed 'London Zoo' at The Bread & Roses Theatre, recieving 5* reviews and a sold out run. The play went on to win two awards at the London Pub Theatre Standing Ovation Awards, for Best Production and Best Ensemble.

Sam continues to direct and perform across the London Fringe, including White Bear and Lion & Unicorn theatres. All this, whilst remaining constant with her love for teaching, working with adults as guest practitioner for Fourth Monkey Drama School in addition to helping her Twickenham Youth Theatre & White Rabbit Drama Club pupils to grow and thrive in The Arts.


Her teaching methods are enhanced by the belief that all performers should be given the opportunity to express themselves through drama and the knowledge that the Arts can help to build vital skills needed whilst growing up.

Samantha's aim is to help young people and adults to; share stories, have fun and create together in a playful, supportive and welcoming space.

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Gioia Gray

Director, Choreographer and Facilitator

Certificates: Diploma in Musical Theatre, Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts. Enhanced DBS, 12hr Paediatric First Aid, Level 3 Safeguarding for Children


Gioia trained for 8 years at the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts and  began her career acting in TV, short films and pantomime before discovering a love for teaching. Gioia became Choreographer and Director for Babette Langford's Young Set almost 30 years ago and along with Babette and family, continues to help raise funds for The Variety Club of Great Britain, providing hundreds of young people with the opportunity to perform in West End Theatres and advising them on audition technique for drama schools and conservatoires, as they take the next step on their creative journey. Gioia is a guest teacher with TYT and acts as our Creative Advisor on all things performance based.

 
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