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Theatre takes student to Beijing

Anastasia Roberts surrounded by fellow drama staff and her pupils. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

By Chelsea Boyle

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Former Chanel College student Anastasia Roberts had her work cut out looking for jobs that would allow her to share her love of theatre.

After three years studying at Victoria University, Wellington, the theatre major was struggling to find suitable jobs online, something she said was “not for lack of trying”.

On a whim, the 22-year-old applied to be a drama teacher in Beijing, China, thinking “why not?”

“One week later they asked for an interview, a week after that I had the job and a month later I was in China,” she said.

“From getting visas to sorting out my contract etcetera, I didn’t have time to exactly process it – but I was in Beijing, in China, getting paid to do what I love”.

Beijing was a diverse and amazing city, she said.

“The laowei or foreigner community is thriving and there is always events or interesting things to do.”

Now Roberts is passing on her love of drama to pupils aged between seven and 12.

“Theatre is a powerful art form, it teaches lessons about life, society and emotion and more importantly yourself,” she said.

“I’ve always loved theatre and drama and it’s been a big part of my life.”

She hopes her whirlwind experience will show others that drama can open doors, and can literally take you places.

It may seem tough and it may seem like a hard road to follow, she said.

“But it’s so much easier to study something you are actually passionate about.

“Art can take you places, if you let it.

“If you work hard you can achieve anything, drama and theatre graduates gain valuable skills which you can’t get anywhere else.”


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