Acting and Creating a Character

As a performer myself, I eagerly awaited this workshop, convinced that I would leave The Warren on that damp, soggy day a better actress – or at least with a few hot tips on character embodiment. Instead, what I got was the broad definition of acting as ‘thinking the thoughts of someone else’ (mind blown) and some fairly useful and inspiring life tips about what it means to be a character yourself.

More akin to a self-help seminar than a practical acting workshop – not necessarily a negative depending on what you hoped to gain from the class.

We commenced the workshop with a brief biography of our instructor, the wonderfully charismatic Julian Caddy, the Brighton Fringe Director who also runs regular workshops in London. The workshop was attended by a varied bunch; several fellow actors desperate to hone their craft, a few writers hoping for inspiration and a couple of comedians eager to improve their sketch comedy. It is hard to say who out of this group would have achieved the most from this workshop, as it was more akin to a self-help seminar than a practical acting workshop – not necessarily a negative depending on what you hoped to gain from the class.

My main gripe with the workshop is that it felt rushed and it ran over significantly, a fact that Caddy noted also, stating that 80 minutes is not long enough to do the technique justice. The description cites the workshop as containing ‘theory and improvisation’, however I found that it focused too much on the former, leaving the latter to be crammed into the last 10 minutes of the class – a disappointment for those in attendance who anticipated a more applied ‘acting’ workshop. The improvisation that did take place was well considered by Caddy, focusing on the idea of ‘thinking the thoughts’ of the character by being given elaborate details about their personal lives and history. Caddy gave personal and constructive feedback to the improvisations, showcasing his enthusiasm and belief in the lessons he was teaching.

Overall, the workshop was enjoyable and contained valuable perceptions on daily thought processes, most usefully on the concepts of over-thinking, self-consciousness and worrying. However I found that it was more reminiscent of a seminar than a workshop and too theory-based, disappointing for those expecting a revelation in applied character creation. This discrepancy in the description of the workshop as opposed to the class itself, combined with the lack of time Caddy had to truly explore the techniques, led to unsatisfactory experience despite the obvious intellect and talent of the instructor.

Reviews by Corinne O'Sullivan

Sussex County Cricket Club

The Wedding Reception

Brighton Spiegeltent: Bosco

The Girl Who Cannot Die

The Dukebox @ St Andrew's


The Dukebox Theatre

What's in the Punch?

Brighton Media Centre Studio

Brewers Fayre by David Greig

Brighton Spiegeltent

Knee Deep


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Come and get your teeth into a refreshing approach to acting with this Stanislavski-inspired technique. Theory and improvisation, open to all, experienced or not. Based on my long-running workshops at Conway Hall in London.

Most Popular See More

The Phantom of the Opera

From £27.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Book of Mormon

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £42.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets


From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets