Jonathan Owen

Jonathan is delighted to be returning to Dudley Festival. He trained as a Drama & Music teacher at St. Peter’s College, Birmingham University’s Faculty of Education and he has taught in secondary schools, colleges and examined for Trinity-Guildhall extensively in the UK and overseas.  As a performer he has worked in Theatre, TV and Radio for over 30 years. Most notably he played Terry Barford for 10 years in ‘The Archers’, and has appeared in numerous other productions for BBC Radio 4.

Television work includes the comedy-characters ‘The Great Orlando’ & ‘The Rev. Ashbourne’ in Coronation St, Emmerdale, Doctors, All Creatures Great & Small, London’s Burning and Heartbeat etc.  Theatre work includes West-End productions of Singin’ in the rain, Jesus Christ Superstar, Having a Ball, Call me Madam and Ziegfeld, as well as numerous national tours and provincial repertory.

His specialities are musical-theatre and pantomime, and as well being one of the UK’s leading ‘Dames’ he has written and directed numerous professional pantomimes in the UK, and five engagements as resident writer/director in Bermuda!

He is the author of the comedy-drama ‘Teapots & Superglue’ which has received much critical acclaim.

To see some of his work visit YouTube or for more information see his website

Norma Redfearn

BA. MA. LGSM. LTCL(Drama). LTCL (Tefl). ALCM (Pub Sp). PGCA

Norma trained at the Northern College, researched at Leicester University and has performed in weekly Rep and Professional tours. She examined internationally for Trinity College London and received the Chairman’s award for services to Trinity. In 2001 she was invited to join the LAMDA panel of examiners and was co-author of a LAMDA publication on Public Speaking.

Having left LAMDA in order to devote more time to her Festival work and adjudicating, she was approached by Vanguard examinations and now enjoys a limited amount of examining for them. She has taught voice production to the lay speakers in the Diocese of Peterborough and teaches a variety of ages in her private studio.
She is proud to be an adjudicating member of the British and International Federation of Festivals and was delighted to be given a Fellowship in 2015.
Although many of her former students are pursuing successful acting careers in theatre and television, and others are qualified Drama teachers, her greatest joy is equipping students with life skills and the ability to take their place in society confidentially.

She believes that the Festival Movement is a wonderful tool to help the confidence and development of all who enter, and she looks forward to sharing once again with all the students of Dudley in this celebration of their achievement.

Ann Newson

LRAM, RAM(dip)

Drama and performance have been Ann’s life’s passion. She made her first stage appearance at the age of five and has since performed in many leading roles. She studied Speech and Drama at the Royal Academy of Music for three years. She then pursued a career in teaching and lecturing in Drama Colleges and schools in London and Southern England. Her forte is directing plays and musicals for adults and children.

Ann is a member of the LAMDA Board of examiners. She has examined all the disciplines in the syllabus throughout the United Kingdom and in Australia, America, Dubai, France, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, Kuwait, Singapore, South Africa, Spain and Sri Lanka. She has been on several LAMDA syllabus committees and edited some of their publications. She runs her own training company specialising in Public Speaking and Presentation Skills for business people.
She strongly believes that it is so important to encourage young people to communicate verbally and confidently. This is a life skill for their future. Festivals give them such a valuable opportunity to develop this skill

As a member of the British and International Federation of Festivals for Music, Dance and Speech she has adjudicated throughout England, Northern Ireland, Eire, Guernsey and Hong Kong.