Drama students at Altrincham College were given a special treat yesterday when Michelle Keegan, star of BBC One’s Our Girl and Sky One’s Brassic, stopped by to deliver a special acting masterclass.
The 33-year-old gave constructive feedback as the Year 9 to 13 students delivered a two-minute monologue from a 21st-century text of their choice.
Students then enjoyed an intimate Q&A, led by the school’s assistant head teacher Mr Keegan – who also happens to be Michelle’s brother.
Mr Keegan quizzed his sister about her route into acting and played clips from some of her most memorable performances.
When asked how she prepared for television roles, Michelle said: “When I start a new job, I still get nervous, but confidence comes with time.”
The former Coronation Street star admitted that when she starts a new role she buys a new perfume, which helps her to get into character when she wears it.
Michelle also shared acting tips and told the students, “acting is all about reacting… if something feels natural then do it”.
The students were presented with certificates signed by Michelle, with tips on how they can improve their performance.
Year 11 student, Maisie, said: “Michelle was lovely and very down to earth. I really appreciated her feedback and she told me that I gave a very natural performance.”
Jack, Year 13 commented, “I really enjoyed performing in front of Michelle and it was a fantastic opportunity to get constructive criticism from such a well-known professional actor.”
Head of Drama, Mrs Mrozinski, said: “It was absolutely brilliant to see the students being pushed out of their comfort zone and being able to perform in front of their peers and Michelle. I am so proud of them and I can’t wait to welcome Michelle back in the autumn term where she will be able to see the students’ progress.”
Michelle said: “I was so impressed by the talent, confidence and passion for performance in the room, it was incredible! All of the students were so confident that it was almost impossible to provide critique. If I had been a casting director, I would have signed them all up.
“I am looking forward to coming back to Altrincham College to see how the students’ progress towards a really exciting and rewarding career.”