Acting

Katharine Piercey

Course Leader – Acting

MA Devised Performance (University of Winchester); BA Actor Musician (Rose Bruford College); Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (Rose Bruford College); Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Biography

Katharine trained as an Actor Musician at Rose Bruford College and has an MA with Distinction in Devised Performance from the University of Winchester.

Her varied work as a professional actor musician has included Poppy at the ICA and Disjointed at Jermyn Street Theatre; touring with Quantum Theatre for Science; the films Ali G in Da House (Working Title) and Bonviva (DMI Productions), and a Tetley Tea advert.

A pianist, flautist and singer, Katharine also composes and arranges music for the theatre and spent 10 years working as a freelance singing teacher and musical director before moving into Higher Education.  She has composed music for theatre productions such as Second Person Narrative, Ashgirl, Daisy Pulls it Off, The Good Person of Szechwan, Vanity Fair, Canterbury Tales, On the Razzle, Spring AwakeningTales from Ovid, Beauty & the Beast and Mother Courage.  Musical director credits include The Light Burns Blue, Dracula, A Midsummer’s Nights Dream, Much Ado About Nothing and Blithe Spirit.

In 2012, she set up Sandpiper Theatre, a company which focuses on creating original theatre pieces using music as its source and inspiration. The company launched with A-Roving We Will Go, a promenade-style piece using actor musicians and written especially for the opening of the 2012 Bournemouth Arts by the Sea Festival.  Katharine went on to create Mermaid & The Oyster, a site-specific piece devised in association with Oyster Pleasance for the 2014 Bournemouth Arts by the Sea festival, and as part of the Bathing Beauties exhibition at the Arts University Bournemouth.

Other directing credits include Freedom, Bread & Peace: a multi-media performance of a new score written by Karen Wimhurst, commissioned by Soundstorm and the Arts University Bournemouth for the Bournemouth Arts by the Sea Festival; Turn of the Screw: a new musical written by Paul Knight and Chloe Austin, based on the novel by Henry James; and Into the Woods: a co-production between Kokoro, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra’s new music ensemble, and graduating students from the Arts University Bournemouth.

Katharine is also the co-founder of Gaudy Bunting, a theatre company which investigates the wider political perspective of different female roles, framed within a subversion of the classic comic double act (www.gaudybunting.com).

Professional practice

Recent professional practice includes: With Gaudy Bunting: An Evening with Miss Hazel & Miss Katharine (2012), University of Winchester; The ‘How to Never Forget Anything Ever Again’ Show premiered at the Nuffield Theatre’s first Experiment night in 2014, and went on to perform in the Bournemouth Emerging Arts Fringe (2014) and at the Ventnor Fringe Festival (2015). As an independent director her credits include: A-Roving We Will Go (2012), Bournemouth Arts by the Sea festival, a promenade style piece using actor musicians and written especially for the opening of the festival; Mermaid & the Oyster (2014), a devised, site-specific piece in association with the Oyster Pleasance for the Bournemouth Arts by the Sea festival, and part of the Bathing Beauties exhibition at the AUB; and Freedom, Bread & Peace (2015), a new multimedia opera written by Karen Wimhurst, commissioned by Soundstorm and the AUB for the Bournemouth Arts by the Sea Festival, and performed at the Shelley Theatre, Boscombe.

Areas of teaching expertise include: Acting through song, actor as composer, ensemble and solo singing, musical theatre, actor-musicianship, musical directing, music composition for theatre, acting fundamentals, psychological realism, devising

Professional memberships

  • The Association of Teachers of Singing http://aotos.org.uk

Research Specialism

Research interests: Katharine’s ongoing research interests are on how musicality may be used as a devising technique in theatre performances. This is something she continues to explore through her own work as a director but also through her teaching of singing to undergraduate training actors.  Through her work with Gaudy Bunting (www.gaudybunting.com) Katharine creates work that investigates the wider political perspective of different female roles, framed within a subversion of the classic comic double act.

Back to results