More than 40 applicants from six countries have used the online audition and interview process to enter the Sharjah Performing Arts Academy (SPAA).
The online auditions and interviews were conducted to continue SPAA’s global search for talented students following the closure of all schools and higher education institutions due to the coronavirus, COVID-19 outbreak.
SPAA executive director Professor Peter Barlow highlighted that during these challenging times aspiring performing and production artists across the globe are staying positive and are getting creative with their applications.
“We are in a very lucky position to be able to connect with our current students and engage with potential students through online platforms,” he said.
“We are still supporting the professional performing arts in these challenging times by moving some expectations and practices from the physical world to the virtual world; we are lucky to have the technology to keep building our successful and exciting academy,” he added.
Despite global discouragement to travel and social distancing rules, the SPAA has seen a positive response to its online auditions and interviews from applicants around the world and has witnessed a 300 percent increase in applications from 25 countries compared to 15 last year.
Samantha Lloyd, Student Administration Manager at SPAA, said, “We are living, working and operating during unprecedented times, which calls for innovative measures to engage and support our SPAA students and the wider community. The SPAA is committed to ensuring that current and future performing arts students are given every opportunity to pursue their higher education goals and professional, performing arts ambitions. Advanced and accessible technology brings people together and keeps them connected, even when situations call for social distancing and isolation. We are thrilled to have had such a positive response to our online video auditions and interview admissions process.”
Lloyd further noted that the current situation has shown us that creative people will find ways to pursue their ambitions and dreams and that there is certainly a need and demand for higher education performing arts training here in the Middle East.