All About… The Arts VA’s Dawn-Louise
Next up in our series of Q&As with our VAs, we hear from Dawn-Louise - who joined The Arts VA earlier this year - about how she started out in the industry, her dancing years and the first time she attended a glitzy film premiere.
What was your first job?
Working as a receptionist for a small building company in London Bridge.
What did you want to be when you were younger?
A dancer. I attended ballet classes from the age of three and continued with dance lessons and competed through to my twenties.
When did you know you wanted to work in the arts?
My family have always loved the arts, film and TV, so it was instilled in me from a young age. I became a Legal PA/Assistant and decided to combine my skill set and temp within the creative industries to help me gain more experience. I ended up working for some amazing companies, including Sony Music, Celador TV/CPL Productions and The Really Useful Group. It’s so interesting and exciting to have some involvement in a West End show or a TV format.
What was the first production you went to see at the theatre?
The Nutcracker at The Royal Opera House when I was about 10. I was completely mesmerised by the performance and venue!
What’s your favourite theatre memory?
Attending my first film premiere of The Phantom of the Opera, which was held at Olympia London in December 2004. We even walked along the red carpet - minus the flashing bulbs because no-one knew who we were obviously! The venue was absolutely stunning. The symbolic chandelier hung in the centre of the room and we were surrounded by amazing food and drinks. Il Divo performed and at the end of the night, there were even falling petals and fake snow!
What do you like the most about being a VA?
I love to organise people and be a part of their business growth. I also enjoy working for start-ups, especially those who are open to your input and ideas. It’s a great asset and learning curve for a VA to learn new systems too, despite its challenges at times!
What do you like to do on a weekend?
Seeing my family, friends and taking my puppy, Monty, for nice long walks around the lovely country parks in Essex.
Watching A Place in The Sun! Dark chocolate and any crisps.
I’m a real foodie so this is hard - love chicken Madras and a roast chicken dinner.
A double Macchiato and a pastry.
Coffee or tea?
Les Mis or Phantom?
Love both but Phantom pips the post for me because of my work history.
Anything with bubbles, such as Crémant (just as good as Champagne!).
Favourite holiday destination?
Skiathos - I visited several times prior to it becoming famous for Mamma Mia!
Best way to relax?
Reading, yoga, walking and binge-watching TV shows.
Cardio/dance classes, yoga, socialising and intermittently trying to polish up on my basic, conversational French.
Three words that describe you?
Loyal, organised, humorous!
Roast chicken dinner, plus all the trimmings.
Dinner party guests?
I’d have to choose present and past here: My family, Christopher Walken, Denzel Washington, Elvis Presley & Marilyn Monroe.
The Arts News
Phantom will be back on stage this month! Shows start from 27th July, starring Killian Donnelly as The Phantom, Lucy St. Louis as Christine Daaé and Rhys Whitfield as Raoul.
The cast for Matilda has been revealed - the show returns to the West End in September and will be back on stage for its 10th birthday. What's On Stage have the full story.
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