My name is Natalia Bilakiewicz, and I will be graduating with BA (Hons) Drama at Anglia Ruskin University in summer 2023.
During my three years of study, I have explored various areas of theatre making, working on short films, as well as acting; including online performances.
Working backstage on productions has allowed me to further develop my creativity, especially in the design of props and set. Challenging my writing abilities, allowed me to adapt Jill Murphy’s children’s book Whatever Next! into a play which we performed at the nearby Great Abington Primary School.
Besides exploring various backstage roles, I strengthened my skills as a storyteller. I worked on an online production of Sarah Kane’s 4.48 Psychosis and created independent videos for further modules. Exploring film making allowed me to familiarise myself with editing processes and two-dimensional narratives.
I acted in a theatre production of Polly Stenham’s version of August Strindberg’s Miss Julie, with the shortened title Julie. Furthermore, I have explored the use of performing and acting in settings outside of the conventional theatre, such as on sites, within communities or in therapy.
Last November I had the opportunity to be part of Back to Back Theatre’s project The Democratic Set: Cambridge, UK 2022. This short film explored unresistingly the residents of Cambridge.
For our final year performance, we create a student-led Festival of Performances. We create and perform five individual, original productions in professional venues in Cambridge. All the creative decisions are being made by the students. This opportunity offers us to take on a variety of backstage, as well as acting roles. To fulﬁl this module, and equally grow as a creative, I decided to become involved in both areas - acting and backstage work. I have previously gained experience in certain areas of backstage work, such as prop and set design.
In my final year, I wanted to take on new challenges. My aim to explore and expand new skills will be reached by taking on the role of a make up design and artist for one of the performances; an adaptation of Georg Büchner’s Woyzeck.
Furthermore, I decided to take on two acting roles to explore a new range of characters. In Woyzeck I portray the Grandmother. A mysterious character who, despite of limited dialogue, opens a wide range of interpretation through her monologues. In another production, Rothwood, I play Louisa, a maid who, similar to the Grandmother, holds many secrets and sets the atmosphere with her presence.