"Coming together is a beginning.
Keeping together is progress.
Working together is success."
Henry Ford

Alumni

I have been truly blessed to have you in my life. You are the reason for the success of the Foyle School of Speech and Drama. We are all here today because of you

I would love to know

  1. When you were with us;
  2. What you enjoyed about the Foyle School of Speech and Drama;
  3. Where are you now?

If you can email me with the all the details and a current photograph to sandrabiddle20@gmail.com

  • Aishling Gidea


    I owe a great deal to attending the Foyle School of Speech and Drama and cannot speak highly enough of Mrs Biddle. It enhanced my confidence and ensured I never feared public speaking which was a huge benefit to me in both my personal life and academic life as presentations featured regularly throughout both my degree and my masters. I am currently teaching Business Studies and Law in a High School and Sixth Form College in West London


  • Alisha Doherty


    My name is Alisha Doherty. I started Speech and Drama in 1993, at five years old. Throughout my time at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama, I participated in many amateur and professional productions and made many friends. My confidence and self esteem grew and developed consistently throughout these fourteen years. I participated in many Feisenna, concerts and obtained Grade 8 in Speech and Drama, solo acting and Musical Theatre. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama and the fond memories, I will carry with me for many years to come. I studied at St Mary’s University College in Belfast and am now a fully qualified primary school teacher. I taught in a private international school in Madrid, Spain for a year and am currently teaching in a local primary school in Belfast.


  • Andrew Simpson


    Happiest memories of speech and drama?
    It has to be playing one of the three kings in our Derry-style nativity. We got to go on stage on a scooter and we drove Mrs Biddle mad!

    What did you learn at speech and drama?
    You must believe in yourself in any situation in life. You’re just as good and capable as anyone else.

    What do you do now and how did speech and drama help you?
    I’m an actor now so everything I learned I learned from Mrs B. She’s made it second nature for me. All the nail biting at feises has paid off as standing up in front of a crowd is like second nature to me now.


  • Anne Devine


    I was an active member of the FSSD for 20 years. I started as soon as I could talk and along the way I had the opportunity to stand along side Mrs Biddle as her assistant, which I continued to do even after I had completed my classes. Over that time I acquired many skills which have served me well. I have now retired from the theatre to embark on another kind of theatre, as I begin my career as a doctor. I have many happy memories, too many to tell but continue to hold a special place in my heart for Mrs Biddle and the work that she does. Every Saturday I would develope my communication and team buliding skills, estabilsh a love of literature and marvelle at the bright lights of performing. I look at the FSSD as a second home, literacy as the foundations of the house, music to lift the roof, friends have become like siblings and Mrs Biddle as the mother-always there with open arms and a smile, encouraging and nuturing you into being the best you can be.


  • Aoibheann Biddle


    I’ve been attending the Foyle School from the age of 3 and since then it has definitly been one of the most important aspects of my life. Mrs Biddle made every person feel like her own son or daughter and they all grew up believing that they were brilliant! Every year something different and exciting was happening in drama with Mrs B giving everyone a chance.

    My favourite memories would have to include the Christmas shows with a party and a good time and a chance to perform on ‘the big stage’ infront of a full audience!

    At the minute I’m applying for the Drama and Musical Theatre schools in the UK, I know the invaluable training the FSSD has provided me with will help me so much with my applications. Having finished my senior certificate 2 years ago I now help Mrs Biddle with her classes and I can honestly say she still has the same enery and enthusiasm as she did all those years ago with my class. She is an inspiration and a one of a kind teacher!


  • Aoife McCloskey


    I began Speech and Drama classes when I was only four years old in 1997. I have many fond memories of my time in Speech in Drama such as learning new poems and learning what message or story the poets were trying to portray, taking part in Christmas Shows (a sure way to get involved in the Christmas spirit) as well as entering competitions to compete with others my own age.

    I am currently in my second year studying Medicine in the University of Dundee. Speech and Drama has played a big part in my personal development as well as my ability to talk to others namely patients and the distressed relatives of these patients.


  • Blathnaid Biddle


    I was a member of the Foyle School of Speech and drama from the age of three until i was eighteen. I enjoyed every aspect of the year, from taking part in the annual charity Feis, performing on the main auditorium stage in front of a packed audience Millennium Forum and achieving my Grade 1-8 and Distinction in Senior Certificate for Speech and Drama. Coming to class every week was like being part of a family and everyone supported each other and wanted each other to do well. I met great friends, many who I am still very close to. I miss Speech and Drama loads as I am now in third year studying Primary Education in Glasgow but hopefully I’ll pass on the gifts Mrs B gave to me to my future pupils. I look
    forward coming home to see the fabulous Christmas show this year


  • Breanna Donnelly


    I first attended FSSD at the age of 5 in 1997, until I was ready to set off to University at the age of 18. Being a member of FSSD has made me into the person I am today, a confident, enthusiastic and determined individual who not only strives to be the best she can be but who enjoys life and can see the positives in every situation that it throws at you. Since an early age I have always been a creative and practical learner and I feel that my time at FSSD had been the best decision in embracing my creative side, allowing me to blossom has an individual, meet life long friends and have a ball while learning. Mrs Biddle has been and will always be a huge inspiration to me and I will always thank her for the amazing memories and lessons she has taught me throughout my time as a student at FSSD, I have learnt fantastic social skills and life mottos such as, “I am BRILLIANT!” which I believe give young children the confidence, motivation and positivity that they need in life when growing up and when entering the big bad world as adults.

    Still to this day I have the fondest and happiest memories at FSSD and it has provided me with amazing opportunities throughout my life such as amateur to professional productions, being part of Feis Doire Cholmcille, obtaining my grades from 1 to 8 including Musical Theatre and Senior Certificate. I owe the greatest thanks and praise to Mrs B and without her guidance, love and confidence in each of her pupils I would not have had the inspiration to continue my love for Drama and study Drama and Theatre Studies at Trinity College, Dublin.

    Skinny mirinky dinky doo I love you- forever in my heart Mrs B!!


  • Caireen McPhillips


    I attended the Foyle School of Speech and Drama up until 2003 when I gained my Licentiate (Teacher) Diploma from the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin. I really enjoyed my time at the Foyle School with Mrs Biddle and I feel that my self-confidence increased and my love of literature was nurtured there. I am working in Carlingford, County Louth as a primary school teacher and I also teach drama classes in Dundalk. However I still return home every weekend where my sister and I have set up a school of Speech and Drama in Derry and Portstewart.


  • Caoimhe Doherty


    I joined the Foyle School of Speech and Drama in 1991, age 6. I am proud to say
    I was in the first ever class, back when it all started. I found my time with Mrs Biddle invaluable, and gained some very important life skills. It gave me confidence and taught me the ability to work in a team. It widened my knowledge of poetry and prose which definitely helped with my school work.
    After completing all my grades and numerous feis competitions I left the Foyle School of Speech and Drama age 18 to go to university in Manchester to study Optometry. I am now a full time Optometrist at Kevin Finan Opticians, Derry, where I can communicate with my patients with assurance and ease, which I firmly believe is helped by my time spent with Mrs Biddle. I am glad to see that 21 years later Mrs Biddle is still going strong. This is due to her fabulous personality and her dedication to the young people of Derry


  • Clare McCloskey


    I began Speech and Drama in 1994 when I was 4 years old. I loved performing in competitions as this gave me confidence as I was quite shy when I was younger. I am studying medicine now in University College Dublin and learning poems when I was younger has made me a more proficient learner which is very helpful now when studying.


  • Connor Boyle


    My name is Connor, and I was a pupil at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from 1998 until 2010. It gave me much more confidence to speak in front of people or large audiences and I
    loved taking part in something so important culturally as the Derry Feis. I made so many friends through the years and am very grateful for Speech and Drama for giving me that opportunity! At
    the minute I am studying Medicine at the University of Edinburgh.


  • Conor McFarlane


    I joined the Foyle School of Speech and Drama in 2008 as I was starting my 4th year in school.

    Over the past 4 years I’ve had so many fantastic opportunities to perform with the school and it’s hard to pick just one memory from all of them. The Christmas shows will always be a great memory for me and i’m sure it will be the same for many others in the future as well. It brings the pupils from all of the different classes together and gets everyone involved to showcase everyone in the school and shows just what we can all do when we put our minds to it! That said, getting to represent the school at the Chamber of Commerce dinner and perform to all of the guests has to be another highlight for me. It was a fantastic experience, and one I will never forget!

    I’m currently in my first year at the University of Edinburgh studying Music and absolutely loving it! I can safely say that the skills I acquired from my time at the school have really set me up for my time here at university. Performance is of course an important aspect of my course and I find myself drawing on what i’ve learnt when i’m singing and playing to step it up a gear and give the best performance I can. As well as this i’ve found that because of my interest in drama and performing, I’m meeting more and more people as its given me the chance to join the theatre societies and really get involved in that side of things over here in Edinburgh.


  • Daniel Herron


    “As a pupil of the Foyle School of Speech and Drama I learned about a lot of authors and their work, which I still find myself referencing today. Speech and Drama was a part of my life for around 10 years, and during that time I made some great friends and thoroughly enjoyed myself. Through the classes and the grades I cultivated a solid research technique, which really helped prepare me for my GCSE’s, A-Levels and my university course further on down the line.

    I currently live in Dundee with my girlfriend and our puppy, where I work at the University of Dundee as a Researcher and Teaching Aide. To this day I still see how attending the Foyle School has helped me in my life; it gave me the confidence to lead discussions, deliver presentations, and it even improved my communication skills.”


  • Enya Doherty


    My name is Enya Doherty and I first joined the Foyle School of Speech and Drama when I was 6 years old. I enjoyed attending classes every week which enabled me to grow in confidence and meet many new friends. This confidence has  enabled me to follow a career in teaching and I am currently in my second year at St Mary’s University College in Belfast.


  • Eve Devine


    What can I say about my time at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama? Well to begin, I attended the school for just over 14 years, it quickly became not only a hobby but a part of my life. I have so many fond memories that will last me a lifetime and made life long friends along the way. Mrs Biddle and the school gave me two of the most important things in my life; the first of these being my love of poetry and drama. Mrs Biddle opened my eyes to so much and showed me the beauty of words as well as allowing me to have fun with drama and showing me that sometimes in life you have to simply laugh and enjoy the moment (like the time I had to stand in and play the part of the tinsel in the P2 play….I was 17 at the time!) The second thing I got from Drama and the most dearest is my best friend (and Mrs Biddle’s daughter) Aoibheann Biddle, we attended classes together, practiced our poems together, even played the 2 ugly step sisters together, she truly is my other half and I consider her to be my third sister, I don’t know what I would do without her. What I would say to anyone who is considering joining or sending their child to the Foyle School of Speech and Drama is, do it! We’re much more than simply a drama school, we’re a family and I guarantee that you will learn lessons that you will carry through life and make friends that you will always hold close to your heart…I know I did.


  • Eve Matthewson


    I attended the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the age of 3, back in the days when there were only 10 of us, all reciting “Big Black Spider” in unison to the smiling face of Mrs Biddle, a woman who can only be described as a fantastic teacher, a surrogate mother, and a true matriarch of our wonderful city. Throughout the last 20 years I have seen the Foyle School of Speech and Drama grow and expand from the 10 of us in my very first class, to the mountains of pupils that Mrs Biddle teaches today in the Millennium Forum. I can honestly say that I valued every moment I spent as a pupil, learning everything from the poetry of Seamus Heaney to mimes set to music. After gaining my Grades 1-8 and my Senior Certificate, I had the pleasure of teaching alongside Mrs Biddle through my final years in school. Upon taking up this post, I was familiar with the saying, “with great power comes great responsibility,” but I had no idea that I would be in charge of choreographing the dance moves to the infamous FSSD Christmas Show!
    I am currently in my fourth year studying Dentistry at Queen’s University Belfast, and my time spent at FSSD undoubtedly helped me throughout the interview process when I was applying to university. I enjoyed every moment of my time at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama, and I will always value the memories that Mrs Biddle has given me; the excitement of the Christmas Show, the preparation in the run-up to the Derry Feis and the practice for our Grade exams. FSSD is a fantastic organisation, with a fantastic leader, Mrs Biddle, who gave us the courage to look in the mirror and tell ourselves, “I AM BRILLIANT!”


  • Gaynor Donnelly


    My Name is Gaynor Donnelly I just completed my Law degree with Honours and currently working with the Citizens Advice, I attended the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the age of 8 and gained all of my grades from 1 to 8 including my senior certificate.
    What can I say, “The Life and Times of the FSSD”. The happiest, memorable, exciting enjoyable part of my life, from The Christmas Shows to the Fies. Happy happy times.
    From playing Pepper in the West End Show ”ANNIE” and the role of Majella McGinty are among some of my high points all down to a wonderful teacher Mrs B

    Thank you for a marvellous part of my life and I wish you all the success you deserve.


  • Gerard Dorrity


    I attended the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the tender age of 7 till I was 15 and completed my senior certificate.My favourite memories were always the Christmas shows. Not just because of the large party that was always held afterwards with more sweets cakes and chocolates than anyone could evereat, but because of the buzz of all the years, all the classes, and all the age groups coming together to show off what we’d all been working so hard on. I still hold many dear memoriesalso of the Foyle Arts Centre being my Saturday “home”, before taking up roots and moving to the Millennium Forum.

    I have now recently completed a degree in Acting and Stage Combat at East 15 Acting School just outside London. The first Irish student to complete this one of a kind degree. I am workingin various forms of acting from stage to screen to voice over work. None of which would have been possible without Sandra Biddle and the Foyle School Of Speech and Drama.


  • Jennifer McCloskey


    I began Speech & Drama when I was in Primary One (age 4) in the year 1996. My favourite memories from Speech & Drama are preforming in the Christmas shows, which were always a lot of fun and gaining the confidence to get up and perform in the Feis, which undoubtedly gave me confidence when it came to university and job interviews. I am currently in my second year at the University of Dundee where I am studying Dentistry.


  • Jenny Doherty


    I attended FSSD from 1994- 2008
    The Foyle School of Speech and Drama has been a huge part of my life from the young age of four. I enjoyed attending classes every week, taking part in Christmas shows, summer camps, end of year discos and feis’. Achieving grades 1-8 in Speech and Drama and Senior Certificate in Solo Verse Speaking has been one of my main highlights and
    achievements within Speech and Drama. The FSSD is a place where I made life long friends and gained the knowledge and skills to become successful in mycareer as a teacher.


  • Johnny Coyle


    I attended FSSD from the time i started school at the age of 4, and loved every minute of it, the shows, prose, poems and craic. I achieved my senior certificate in 2009 and stayed around for a few years to help out with the new up and coming stars.

    I loved the Foyle School because it gave me the confidence to go out and face the world. It gave me the tools of public speaking and so the ability to speak to large crowds of people, all in the calm nurturing environment that Mrs Biddle and all her helpers radiate. There is no doubt in my head that through the Foyle School I have gained lifelong friends as well as a skill set that will be of great benefit whatever path in life I choose.

    I am currently in my third year at The University of Glasgow studying single honours Geography and striving to do further study after. I am also Commodore of the Glasgow University Sailing club and Chief Instructor and Centre Manager at Lough Swilly Sailing School. Without my experience in the Foyle School of speech and Drama I would not have had the confidence or the drive to achieve what I have achieved, or have the friends I have today.


  • Katie Herron


    I only left drama two years ago after finishing my senior certificate, but I remember taking classes when I was very young in The Foyle Arts Centre! I loved meeting up with my friends every week in drama, and most of the people I met there are friends I still talk to a lot to this day. Speech and Drama has helped me be able to speak clearly and confidently to an audience as we would recite our poems or solo dramas in front of our peers every week. At the moment I am just starting a degree in Law with Politics at Queen’s University and I know that the skills I learnt from Speech and Drama will help me during presentations and interviews in the future.


  • Larysa Lawrence


    I joined speech and drama when I was eleven just as I started secondary school which was a lot later than many of the students. I had heard so much about it from all my friends for years and was incredibly jealous. After waiting all that time, I know now that I would never look back having gained not only great confidence in my speaking but friends for life and memories I will ever forget.

    My favourite memory from drama has to be the wonderful Christmas shows that we performed every year. Practising for weeks up to it and gradually seeing it all piece together was amazing. It was such a wonderful experience being able to perform on that stage in front of a full audience from such a young age, really making everyone feel like a star.

    Currently I have just begun my second year studying medicine at Queens University Belfast. This involves a lot of group tasks and presentations and because of attending speech and drama classes I no longer have any worries when speaking out in front of groups of people. This is extremely important for my career and I feel that the skills I have learned in FSSD will always stand by me and help me along the way.


  • Laura O Donnell


    I hope you remember me. I’m Laura, the blonde one with the squeaky voice :). I was a pupil from first year until lower 6th which was 2004 until 2010. I made so many friends at Speech and Drama that I still have now and I will have for the rest of my life I hope! Speech and Drama has come in so handy in so many aspects of my life, in school doing debates and public speaking. Drama has given me so much confidence and even now at university I still apply all the public speaking techniques such as projection of voice and pronunciation etc that I was first drummed into me at Mrs Biddle’s Speech and Drama class. I loved drama so much, especially around Christmas time, being able to perform and make my parents proud and also in the later years chaperoning younger students. This particularly has given me so much useful experience, experience which was vital for me in choosing a career in educating people and working in a team environment. Drama provided an opportunity to meet people my age who didn’t attend my school and therefore allowed me to expand on my friend network. The grades seemed hard work at the time but when I look back, I realize how laid back and relaxed the process was and it was just another opportunity to show off how amazing we were at drama (and how amazing our teacher was too obvs)! They have come in so useful in my education and have secured me a place at Leeds which is where I now study Medicine. I am constantly presenting myself to my peers and participating in many role plays. This is an aspect of Medicine which most of my peers find difficult but which I absolutely love. Before I give a presentation I say in my head something I was ordered to do throughout my drama classes and I believe deeply and it works every time!

    I AM A STAR 🙂


  • Laurie-Lee McDowell


    My name is Laurie-Lee McDowell and I am currently studying for a Primary PGCE after having graduated from the University of Cambridge with a honours degree in English, Drama and Education. I started at The Foyle School of Speech and Drama when I was four years old and continued the whole way through my primary and post primary education when I left with Senior Certificate. I owe so much to Mrs Biddle and the amazing opportunities she has given me throughout my years of drama, from featuring in a short Irish film to performing in West End touring productions to being awarded the United Nations Perpetual Trophy. As well as the incredible opportunities given to all students, The Foyle School of Speech and Drama also provides children with invaluable skills needed in everyday life – confidence, communication and leadership skills, to name only a few. Mrs Biddle is a wonderful teacher and values each and every pupil. With The Foyle School of Speech and Drama, every child is a star.


  • Leanne McMullan


    I was a pupil at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the years 1995-2007 and loved every second! During my 12 years at the school I made some life-long friends, gained mountains of confidence and had the best of craic. I will always remember the Christmas Shows, learning your lines, songs, dances and getting excited to sing ‘skinny mar-ink-e-dink’ at the end and Mrs Biddle’s ‘eggscellent’ jokes in the Easter newsletters! I achieved up to my Grade 8 during my time at the school which I found benefited me greatly in things such as GCSE and A-Level drama at school and most notably, in my UCAS application for University. I am now in my final year of teacher training at St Marys University College in Belfast, training to be a Religious Studies and English teacher. My experience in drama has benefited me throughout my course also, as I can bring my experience into lessons I will teach. No matter where I go or what I do, I will always remember (in the famous words of Mrs B herself) that I AM A STAR!


  • Mairiosa Biddle


    I was a member of the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the age of 4 until I was 18 years old. My favourite memories are my days in the Foyle Arts Centre. It was a beautiful building with great atmosphere, my second home. Our class was a Saturday and we would all meet up before class in Florentine s for ice cream and a chat. I loved the Group Dramas- and the improvised ones Mrs B would make up. My favourite would have to be when you were shipwrecked on a desert island and you saw a footprint, I loved that world! I am happy now living and loving Glasgow where I practice as a Doctor.


  • Margaret McPhillips


    Margaret McPhillips achieved her LRIAMD with the Foyle School of Speech and Drama in 2003 and has be teaching classes in Derry and Portstewart since. She also works full time as a training assessor delivering NVQs in hospitality, team leading, business administration and retail.


  • Niamh Furey


    I was a student at the FSSD from way back in the days of the Foyle Arts Centre, until last year. I’m currently a first year undergrad at St. Catherine’s College Oxford and I cannot stress how much my years with Mrs Biddle helped me during the interview process! The 13 years that I spent with Mrs B have given me the confidence to do anything that I put my mind to, and I really believe that I wouldn’t be the person I am without my time with her.


  • Orla Hegarty


    I started drama with Mrs Biddle when I was only 7 years old and enjoyed 10 years studying at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama. Attending these classes greatly improved my confidence, which has been helpful with public speaking but also this has been a great help when it comes to meeting new people. My time at Drama also helped me appreciate the value of working hard from a young age and encouraged me to reach for my full potential. I am currently studying English Literature at Glasgow University and my interest in this area was definitely strengthened by the time I spent at drama. Most importantly, I value the friendships that I made during this time. Our drama class became like a little family and it was in class that I actually met my best friend Sarah. We all have Mrs Biddle to thank for some brilliant memories.


  • Rachel Moore


    I attended the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the age of 5 until 18. Basically my entire life and i loved every minute of it!

    My favourite memory of my time at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama is definitely the Christmas show. Everyone always has a part to play and there is ALWAYS a great atmosphere. The party
    beforehand with lots of sweets and cakes was also a personal favourite!

    I am currently studying Medicine at Cardiff University.


  • Rebecca Harkin


    “I attended the Foyle School of Speech and Drama from the age of 4 way back in the foyle arts centre in 1995 along with some of the people who are still my close friends today. Every Saturday my Granny Peg would drive me up the Strand Road to the place where we were all told “You are all my stars” and “You are all brilliant” by the very patient Mrs Biddle.
    I have to admit I remember feeling a bit nervous saying my poems in front of the class, yet with Mrs Biddle’s encouragement every week, this soon faded away to being impatient waiting for my turn to say my poem “Waiting, waiting, waiting.” and getting to do a dance routine with the class to “Its a hard knock life”. What more could a four year old want to develop the confidence to hit the stage.
    The memories that stay in my mind the most, have to be the big move from the Foyle Arts centre to the Millennium Forum in the city centre. Standing on the auditorium stage at the age of 10 seemed like you’d hit the big time in the world of drama and to have been giving such an opportunity at such a young age, its no wonder its in all our blood to carry it on at university for a career in the Arts.
    Since completing my grades in Drama with Mrs Biddle I have gone on to study at the Conservatory of Music and Drama in Dublin, performed in the USA, France and England, had a role in TG4 production of “Ealu 2” and gotten signed to “Busty Music LTD” as a solo artist/singer songwriter. The classes with Mrs Biddle gave me the experience to stand in front at 32000 people in France with out a fear to read and sing, something I could not have achieved with out my lessons in “hands out, thumbs rolled in, hands down by your side”.
    The support from the Foyle School and Speech and Drama is what makes the young people of Derry believe that they can achieve anything as performers and in all aspects of the world, and the reason that my God daughter Rosa goes to the Foyle School of Speech and Drama to learn her craft.
    I would like to thank Mrs Biddle for all her teaching and laughs that we had over the years, and more importantly for helping me make my dreams come true.”


  • Ronan Gildea


    I really enjoyed my time at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama. I had so many memorable moments such as winning in the feis and grades results day. I also loved doing the Christmas shows every year. I am currently studying Business Economics and Social Studies at Trinity College Dublin.


  • Ruairi Boyle


    I have been with the fssd for the past 12 years
    The Christmas show each year was always the highlight, but of the Christmas shows the most memorable by far has to be Cinderella where I played the part of one of the Ugly sisters. But i don’t have only memories from the FSSSD, I have made life long friends that I know I will keep in contact with for many years to come.

    I am now studying Architecture at the University of Edinburgh and my time in FSSD has given me the ability to confidently and coherently express my design ideas to my professors and piers.


  • Sarah Simpson


    Happiest memories of speech and drama?
    The flurry of excitement around the Christmas show. The nerves, the costumes, the Christmas party, and the relief after the show’s over and you haven’t messed up your lines!

    What did you learn?
    I learned to have more confidence and to speak out. I learned how to make friends, and most of all that I am a star!

    What do you do now and how did speech and drama help you?
    I’m a journalist working for a food magazine, so I interview famous chefs and important industry figures. Speech and drama helped me to have the confidence to chat to people celebs who are used to appearing on TV and really put myself out there to get the best possible story.


  • Sarah Wallace


    I started the Foyle School of Speech and Drama when I was just 8 years old, and I loved it so much I stayed until I was 16. I asked my parents why they sent me to Mrs Biddle and they
    replied saying, it wasn’t because I wasn’t already dramatic enough, but because I needed to gain confidence. The Foyle School of Speech and Drama has played a huge role in giving me the
    confidence I needed to achieve both in the social and academic aspects of my life. Not only did it inspire me to take part in debating and public speaking in my own school, but it was very much a social outlet for me, where I made life long friends. Currently I am studying International Relations and Law MA at the University of Edinburgh, where everyday I need to use the skills
    and values I learnt during my time with Mrs Biddle at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama.


  • Sharon Duffy


    I started drama with Mrs Biddle when I was only 7 years old and enjoyed 10 years studying at the Foyle School of Speech and Drama. Attending these classes greatly improved my confidence, which has been helpful with public speaking but also this has been a great help when it comes to meeting new people.
    My time at Drama also helped me appreciate the value of working hard from a young age and encouraged me to reach for my full potential. I am currently studying English Literature at Glasgow University and my interest in this area was definitely strengthened by the time I spent at drama. Most importantly, I value the friendships that I made during this time. Our drama class became like a little family and it was in class that I actually met my best friend Sarah. We all have Mrs Biddle to thank for some brilliant memories.


  • Sionead Sharkey


    I graduated from the Foyle School of Speech and Drama in 2011 after having being a pupil there for 14 years.
    Mrs Biddle’s classes over the years have provided me with confidence, excellent communication skills and improved self esteem which has helped me in every aspect of life. I have passed all my grades with distinction thanks to Mrs Biddle
    and thoroughly enjoyed performing in the annual Christmas show!
    Mrs Biddle has given me the confidence to pursue a career in acting and this year I will be auditioning for the top third level drama schools in the UK.

    So thank you Mrs B and remember you are a “STAR”!!!


  • Therese Devine


    I attended FSSD 1992/1993. My favourite memories? Speech and drama was always one of the highlights of my week as a child and teenager I loved the acting and musical theatre and even learning the poems each week. The Christmas show is obviously the show stopper of the year and I always remember getting excited standing behind the stage in the Foyle Arts Centre, then the Rialto and then the “big” millennium forum! The excitement that moment you walk onto the stage is incredible! My favourite part was evil stepmother in Cinderella and I had the very first line at curtain up….that is definitely a highlight! I made many good friends at speech and drama and continued to return to help Mrs b behind the scenes for every Christmas show after until 2011 which shows how much I loved it!

    I have graduated from queens university Belfast with a undergraduate and masters in environmental planning and currently work in Belfast for Translink k as GIS Coordinator! Speech and drama. Have me the confidence to e able to speak out and be confident and for that I am always grateful!


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