Rose Bruford College students, staff and guests gathered for Sir Richard Eyre’s annual President’s Talk on Wednesday 21 January 2015 at the College’s Rose Theatre.

Sir Richard, who has been the President of Rose Bruford College since 2010 and was Director of Great Britain’s National Theatre for a decade from 1987 to 1997, is currently working on a number of theatre and television projects, including an adaption for BBC 2 of Ronald Harwood’s play the ‘The Dresser’, that stars two great theatrical knights–Sir Anthony Hopkins and Sir Ian McKellen.

The talk centred around readings from Sir Richard’s latest book ‘What Do I Know? People, Politics and the Arts’ (Nick Hern books) and was followed by questions from the audience.

Personal stories of Judi Dench, John Mortimer, Alan Bennett, Margaret Thatcher and Mary Soames (Winston Churchill’s daughter) kept the audience engrossed, in what was a fascinating insight into the experiences of one of the world’s leading theatre figures.

The evening was compered by Rose Bruford College Principal Michael Earley, who highlighted the positive impact Sir Richard’s visit had on students;

“Sir Richard Eyre’s annual talk was an inspiring look at his life in the theatre and spanned his career as a prominent director of theatre, film, television, opera and musicals.

His readings, showed him to be one our most entertaining essayists and an astute commentator on the arts, politics and a profiler of some of our greatest theatrical talents.

Talking one-on-one to our students afterwards, his warmth and concern for their careers and interests showed what an inspiration he continues to be for the Rose Bruford College community.”

Speaking after the event, Sir Richard said;

“It’s always a pleasure to come to Sidcup and speak to Rose Bruford College students and staff. Their knowledge, passion and drive always impress me, and the reason why it is regarded as one of the best drama schools in the country.”

Picture supplied by Michael O'Reilly.