CHIEF EXECUTIVE –
Christian founded The AOC. The AOC was originally conceived in 1996 and reborn in 2014.
Christian is also a fellow of The Royal Society of Arts and has always held a strong passion for working with children, young people and adults. Drama, acting and creative expression was a great way for him to do this from a very early age.
“It was a sort of outlet for me to express myself, because under my sometimes – apparently ‘confident’ exterior – I was extremely shy and often unsure of myself!” Christian developed a
keen interest in puppetry from the age of eight. This led to making puppets for local schools – simple rod and glove puppets as well as performing shows in the family back garden. Christian then joined a local drama group and went on to perform at The Edinburgh Festival, Scotland in 1981. It was to be his very first full length stage production in Oh What A Lovely War. Before long he was auditioning and got accepted into The National Youth Theatre of Great Britain performing with great young directors and actors from all over the country. One particular actor is now a household name and stars regularly on TV’s Downton Abbey – Hugh Bonneville. Other famous names whom Christian worked with during his time at NYT included Nathaniel Parker who went onto play the title role in the Inspector Lynley Mysteries.
By the time he was sixteen, he knew he wanted to take acting to the professional level and two years later received an invitation to attend the prestigious Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London and completed the three year acting course where he went on to win The Sarah Churchill Memorial Acting Award. Other well-known names that attended his school included Sarah Lancashire, Orlando Bloom, Daniel Craig, Ewan McGregor, Alistair McGowan, Lesley Sharp and Dominic West. Christian continues to work with top, and award winning theatre and television companies whilst running and facilitating exciting workshops and courses both nationally and internationally. He recently worked at the Royal Court Theatre in London in a brand new play for the main stage and directed by award winning director – Dominic Cooke and finished a feature film alongside well known actress Anna Friel. Most recent feature films Christian has worked on include: Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them and Mary Poppins Returns. Jumping backwards to 1996, Christian completed his formal dramatherapy training at the University of Hertfordshire and was invited to run workshops in Malaysia for MIND and accompanied head of voice of Guildhall and The National Theatre – Patsy Rodenburg OBE to work in Montreal and Toronto.
This year, he has been working tirelessly in helping the expansion of The AoC into new and exciting territories and the AoC Trust – a national therapy arts charity. Christian has also set up a new organisation with colleague and co-director Julie-Franklin Baker called The Creative Arts Projects.
Christian’s interest in human behaviour and how dramatic play and creativity interweave seamlessly and can help people unlock hidden talents, and develop life skills, continues to fascinate him. Read some of The AOC’s testimonials here: https://www.theaoc.org.uk/about-us/testimonials/