Talented young Stepps actor makes his debut at Edinburgh Festival

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Stepps actor Michael Tominey will make his professional debut in an all-new production of Five Kinds of Silence at this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Michael, a former pupil of Our Lady’s High School in Cumbernauld, is learning his trade at The MGA Academy of Performing Arts in Edinburgh and will take on the challenging role of detective Lyndon Sheppard in Shelagh Stephenson’s dark and dramatic play about a strained family living under the power of their vicious and abusive father and husband.

Eighteen-year-old Michael, who will begin his second year of The MGA Academy’s three-year Acting diploma after summer, is keenly anticipating the opportunity to be a part of the world’s biggest arts festival.

“I’m really excited,” said Michael. “It’s fantastic that I can put a professional production at the Fringe on my CV. My character is very serious and uptight, and I’ve found it a morally difficult role to play.

“Edinburgh is a great day out, especially during the Fringe, and this show offers something different. You don’t know who to root for, and it’s very dark. It will put the audience through a range of emotions.

“I used to think I was a serious actor, but The MGA Academy has taught me to realise I can be funny and do comedy as well as more physical work. It has transformed me into a different kind of actor. I’ve learned so much in my first year: I can range my voice, do gymnastics, dance, and yoga. Edinburgh is the heart of theatre in Scotland. When I came to the Open Day at The MGA Academy, I felt a family atmosphere and really liked the aura. It’s been a great experience for me and leads to opportunities like this one at the Fringe.”

The show’s cast features a host of aspiring stage superstars from The MGA Academy of Performing Arts’ full-time Acting diploma course. Earlier this year, the Balgreen-based academy became the first full-time professional training academy in Scotland to be awarded accreditation by CDET, the UK’s quality assurance and membership body for the professional dance, drama and musical theatre industries.

Molly Innes, director of the show, said: “Five Kinds of Silence is an award-winning and heart-wrenching play and we are looking forward to sharing it with international audiences at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival. We would encourage people to come along, enjoy the show and support and students and graduates, many of whom are making their Fringe debut.”

Five Kinds of Silence won the 1996 UK Writers Guild’s Best Original Play Award and the 1997 Sony Award for Best Original Drama. The show, which will be performed daily at C Venues from August 3-28, has been brought to life by Beyond Broadway Productions and the team behind 2015’s standout Fringe hit Zanna, Don’t!

Five Kinds of Silence runs daily as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from August 3-28, 7.10-8.25pm, at C Too (St Columba’s by the Castle, Johnston Terrace). Tickets, priced £10.50/£8.50, can be purchased via edfringe.com or via 0131 226 0000