Danielle Steers

From Barnsley to Broadway: Danielle Steers' scholarship-driven tale of theatrical triumph.

Danielle Steers, a talented performer hailing from Barnsley, South Yorkshire, has made an indelible mark in the world of professional theatre. From her role in ‘Bat out of Hell’ and the opportunity to perform in New York City Center, to impressing Shirley Bassey with her performance in Beautiful; and her participation in Sweet Charity at the prestigious Donmar Warehouse, Steers has consistently impressed audiences and industry insiders alike.

Danielle completed her Trinity Level 6 Diploma in Professional Musical Theatre on a scholarship at SLP College, and since her debut in 2011, has captivated audiences with her powerful vocals, dynamic stage presence, and versatility.

'I got a scholarship to study acting at The Academy of Live and Recorded Arts. Without it I would never have got where I was.'

Discovering a passion

Danielle's lifelong love for singing led her to enter a GMTV competition at the age of ten, where she made it into the final 15. This experience ignited her passion for performing and set her on a path to pursue a theatre career. Danielle attended an amateur drama club twice a week where she learned singing, dancing, acting, stagecraft, and performed in musicals and cabaret shows. It was at this school that she discovered the joy of expressing herself through dancing and singing, and found a community of like-minded individuals who shared her passion.

'I think I just loved dressing up and playing a part. It was more about the friendships I formed as well. Being around other people that wanted to do what I wanted to do.'

Training and Diploma

Knowing that the performing arts was her ideal future pathway, Danielle set her sights on SLP College in Leeds to complete a Trinity Level 6 Diploma in Professional Musical Theatre. In an effort to raise funds to buy the uniform and equipment, at 16 she put on a one-woman show in the 280-seater Academy Theatre at Birdwell; which she sold out. The shrewd 16-year-old had the foresight to invite the head of SLP College in Leeds who that night offered her a scholarship at the college.

In her second year, Danielle was offered the Dance and Drama Award. This funding alleviated financial concerns and truly enabled Danielle to pursue her dreams.

'I think it’s really important for people who otherwise couldn’t afford to have the opportunity to go to college. Having that public funding is super important because it allows people to do what they want to do, and what they love, and it would be a shame for that to go away because the arts sector is such a wonderful part of what brings people to this country.'

She further highlights the importance of outreach programs for people of colour, emphasising the need for diversity and inclusion within the industry. Public funding plays a vital role in enabling aspiring artists to pursue their passions, ensuring that the arts sector continues to thrive and attract talent from diverse backgrounds.

Her training at the college provided her with comprehensive instruction in various aspects of the performing arts, including singing, dancing, and acting. The rigorous program equipped her with the necessary skills to pursue a career in the industry and opened doors to new opportunities.

The Trinity Diploma and professional development

Danielle attests to the invaluable skills and knowledge she gained through her Trinity Diploma. The programme not only enhanced her physical and vocal abilities but also provided practical guidance on navigating the industry. Workshops on topics such as tax management, crafting CVs, and conducting oneself professionally were instrumental in her career development. The diploma equipped her with a range of professional skills, giving her a competitive edge and setting her on the path to success.

In her second year, Danielle was offered the Dance and Drama Award. This funding alleviated financial concerns and truly enabled Danielle to pursue her dreams.

'It allowed me to explore things that I wouldn’t have been able to explore if I wasn't on that set track of a diploma, and it gave me all the tools that I needed.'

Career highlights and unexpected directions

It was almost a year to the day after graduating that Danielle got her first job: a part in Legally Blonde at the West End’s Savoy Theatre. She moved to London in preparation for Legally Blonde rehearsals, but then got a phone call from her agent saying she'd been cast in Respect La Diva at the Garrick and needed to drop everything to make the rehearsal the same day. That first rehearsal for Respect La Diva was on Friday, and the show opened the following Wednesday. Then, in the third week of performance she started rehearsing for Legally Blonde.

Looking back on her journey so far, Danielle acknowledges that her training led her down unexpected paths. Initially focused primarily on singing, she discovered the importance of dance training, which ultimately enabled her to secure roles in productions like 'Legally Blonde'; and 'The Bodyguard';. One particularly memorable achievement was portraying Cher in 'Cher Show', a role that earned her Cher's seal of approval.

'If you’d have told me I was going to be a swing on 'The Bodyguard' when I was 16, I would have laughed.'

Similarly, it took her longer to develop her interest in acting – jokingly describing her early acting as "awful" but her skills have improved immeasurably since then.

Danielle Steers' journey is a testament to talent, dedication, and the transformative power of training and funding. Her passion for performing arts, combined with the support she received, propelled her career to new heights. Danielle’s story underscores the significance of public funding in providing access and opportunities for aspiring artists. As she continues to shine on stage and inspire others, Danielle serves as a role model for aspiring performers, highlighting the importance of comprehensive training, public support, and a relentless pursuit of one's artistic dreams.

'Performing gives me the freedom to express myself, dance around and sing, I think that's amazing.

“It allowed me to explore things that I wouldn’t have been able to explore if I wasn’t on that set track of a Diploma, and it gave me all the tools that I needed.”

Find out more about Trinity Professional Performing Arts Diplomas
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