Meet Drama and Theatre student: Charlotte Askew

We caught up with BA (Hons) Drama and Theatre (with a Year in Industry) student, Charlotte, to find out more about her experience and time at Kent.

What has been your favourite module so far, and why?

Introduction to Physical Theatre has been my favourite module so far because it focusses solely on the body – something I am extremely passionate about in performance! The theory was particularly interesting because I learnt how influential my psychological state was over my body and the importance of approaching workshops with a sense of ‘play’.

What made you decide to study your course at University of Kent?

I decided to study my course at Kent because I loved the variation of modules to choose from. I had no idea what direction I wanted to go starting university, so having the opportunity to explore modules such as Puppetry and Performance Art really helped me identify what areas of Theatre I am interested in, as well as what I excel at.

During the lockdown, how have you found studying your course?

During lockdown, I have been working on my Year in Industry! I am currently working at Zinc Arts: a community arts hub which provide an accredited learning scheme for 16+ with additional needs. I have been fortunate enough to spend some of my time physically working in the classroom with students teaching, which has been such an insightful experience; one I cannot wait to take back with me to university!

When you were able to be on campus, where did you spend most of your time?

I spent a lot of my time in the School of Arts. If I was not in a workshop, you would typically find me studying upstairs on the first floor at the desks or on the beanbags because it is such a nice, light and airy place to work. It has a very relaxed environment so I feel very motivated working there.

Are you a part of any sports or societies? And if so, what’s been your experience? Would you recommend them to fellow/new students and why?

I am a part of Kent Dance and it has been an essential society for my university life because I met so many people like myself and I feel completely safe there. I am also a part of the Badminton Society, which is great because there is no commitment pressure. It is completely flexible which worked perfectly around my rehearsals and deadlines. Also you don’t have to be good or experienced to join!

During the lockdown, how have you been keeping social and catching up with friends?

I have been doing virtual movie nights using Teleparty and doing musical bingo over Zoom using a website called My Free Bingo Cards online – it’s great because it feels like a party and you can all groove and sing along together!

During lockdown, have societies been hosting any socials you have loved? Have you discovered any online events worth sharing?

Due to my placement year, I have not been involved in any societies this year but T24 – Kent’s Drama Society – have been producing tons of audio plays which sound amazing!

What’s your favourite thing about the campus?

Honestly, the bunnies. The wildlife and greenery around campus was important for me when looking for a university because it reminded me of home. The huge green stretches that Kent have to offer are felt very familiar to me.

What’s your favourite thing about living in Canterbury?

I like how close Canterbury is to the coast. All you need to do is jump on a bus and you are by the sea. It makes fun, affordable days out with friends, or even just a change of scenery for when you are studying.

What’s your favourite bar/café/restaurant in town or on campus?

There is an incredible fresh bakery that sells homemade goods called ‘Supreme Bake’ in St. Dunstans Street – they sell the best sausage rolls and sandwiches, but you must get there quick, it’s very popular with the locals!

What would you recommend to a new first year student studying your course that would really help them?

You do not have to commit yourself to every opportunity that first arises – there will be more than enough time to experience it!

What would you recommend a first year student moving to Kent try out?

If you are into second-hand/thrifting, Canterbury hold ‘Weigh and Pay’ sales which are full of vintage and retro second-hand clothes. It makes a fun day out, even If you don’t end up buying anything, and as a student you can grab some real bargains!

Are there any books / podcasts / film / online magazines that would be helpful for a new student, or fellow students, studying your course?

If you are interested in studying Sex and Gender within Theatre I would recommend reading ‘Fleabag: The Original Play’ by Phoebe Waller-bridge and listening to ‘The Guilty Feminist’ podcasts hosted by Deborah Frances-White. They both give an interesting perspective on Feminism and Toxic Masculinity.