All about ME!
Most actors (Most? Really? Yes, I think so) hate talking about themselves. One of the reasons of becoming an actor in the first place is simply to BE SOMEONE ELSE.
So an ‘About Me’ page is not to be relished.
Am I an actor?
I trained at RADA (the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art), one of the most famous drama schools in the world, so this should be qualification enough (if you get to watch the films, as I hope you do, you may disagree).
But I also became a filmmaker and editor (if you get to watch…)
How did THAT happen?
My first job after drama school (the aforementioned world famous RADA) was at The Drill Hall, a small theatre not 200m from RADA itself (in fact, they now occupy that building too). My photo, of all the photos available to the world’s press from the entirety of the UK theatre scene, adorned The Sunday Times theatre section and I thought I was made.
My next job was in Pennsylvania at $100 per week. My career was over but at least I’d conquered America (or, rather, a small and curious part of it called Mount Gretna).
On my return to London, I secured and won, a season with the highly prestigious, and world famous (again) Royal Shakespeare Company. I even had a few lines! I performed alongside the great and the good (Brian Cox in Titus Andronicus, to namedrop but one). My career was on the rise yet again. This was it.
I was with the RSC for two and a half years before I was thrown back to unemployment. My next job was as an understudy. It doesn’t get much lower than this, although it was a prestigious understudy role for non other than Sir Kenneth Branagh (not that he or I were knighted at the time, indeed I remain un-knighted to this very day) and it was directed by Dame (as she was then and is now) Judi Dench. So there.
Ken was never off and I was never on.
As I’ve mentioned in various posts, what followed was the meeting that changed my life.
I met a couple of New Yorkers in London who were bringing murder mystery evenings to London. I had no idea what they even meant, but then nor did anyone else in the UK at the time. Their plan didn’t work out but it gave me the idea to run my own mystery company ‘in my spare time’.
It proved far more popular than I ever imagined and became a full time job. I managed to do some theatre but I was writing, performing and producing shows all over Britain and abroad too.
A number of our agents asked if we could do ‘other things’ aside from murder mystery. One of those ‘other things’ was a Film Day (where a company makes a film, which we then screen, in a single day).
We hired in video editors to do the work but, after a while, I started to think that I could edit too. So I learned video editing.
A friend asked me if I could shoot and edit a serious corporate video for KPMG.
I had never done anything serious in my life and yet here I was, a one man ‘film-crew’. That was about 15 years ago and I still work in video today. I also, rarely, get a phone call from my theatrical agent to say he’s put me up for a bit of telly or a film.
So, in the last few years I have been (under Ian Bailey, my stage name): an actor on TV, student films and movies (I’m in a Bollywood film!). I’m also a rap star (of sorts) on this YouTube video (beware; contains swearing – heck, it’s a rap video!) But my last stage play was about five years – not sure if I want to do theatre any more. I have also, in my real name of Ian Williams, made corporate films for various blue-chip companies as well as working with journalists on training exercises with the army (I know! But that’s another story) in locations as diverse as Salisbury Plain, Newquay, Cyprus, Kenya and France.
Although we have a few ‘live’ murder mysteries these days, COVID has given me the chance to do a few online shows. But my ambition (subject to people buying and enjoying this show) is to write, produce, shoot and edit these online murder mysteries.
After all, it brings together everything I do.
So that’s it. That’s me.
Wasn’t so bad was it.