Ac­tor’s Chris-tening

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Stage - Tanya MacNaughton

THIRD year act­ing WAAPA stu­dent Shalom Brune-Franklin has been awarded the in­au­gu­ral Chris Ed­mund Schol­ar­ship.

The an­nounce­ment was made fol­low­ing the class’s fi­nal per­for­mance of Mac­beth at Round­house Theatre, where Brune-Franklin starred as Lady Mac­beth.

The $17,000 schol­ar­ship, made pos­si­ble by the Jack­man Fur­ness Foundation for Per­form­ing Arts (JFFPA) and MasterCard, aims to kick-start the win­ning stu­dent’s act­ing ca­reer.

It was named in hon­our of Hugh Jack­man’s former teacher Chris Ed­mund who taught at WAAPA for 30 years, be­fore more re­cently work­ing as The Pro­nouncer on The Great Aus­tralian Spell­ing Bee.

“I was so hon­oured to have the schol­ar­ship named af­ter me while I am still alive,” Ed­mund said.

“It’s been two years since I left and this class was the last won­der­ful group of peo­ple who I au­di­tioned and trained in their first year, so it’s such a thrill to be with them tonight.”

Ed­mund, WAAPA di­rec­tor Pro­fes­sor Julie Warn and JFFPA found­ing pa­tron Jack Thomp­son were on the se­lec­tion panel that had the dif­fi­cult task of nar­row­ing the field to three fi­nal­ists be­fore choos­ing Brune-Franklin.

“All were quite re­mark­able in the way they pre­sented,” Ed­mund said.

“They were per­sua­sive, touch­ing and bril­liant in the ways they said they would use this schol­ar­ship.”

Thomp­son, who was un­able to at­tend the an­nounce­ment, said the schol­ar­ship pro­vided an ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­nity to a WAAPA grad­u­ate who had shown ex­cep­tional ap­ti­tude and gave fur­ther men­tor­ing and guid­ance in their cho­sen ca­reer path at a time crit­i­cal to their de­vel­op­ment.

Chris Ed­mund and Shalom Brune-Franklin.

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