Episode 5 – Jessica Bowles

If you don’t make mistakes you won’t make anything.”

Jessica Bowles ( @JesBowles ) is the Principal Lecturer and Course Leader of the MA/MFA Creative Producing at Central School of Speech and Drama in London. Jessica trained as a Designer for Film and TV, and spent the early part of her career working across Europe in theatre design with organisations including Dukes Playhouse Lancaster, Young Vic and the Royal Shakespeare Company. Her subsequent career in education has spanned writing the BA (Cons) Theatre Practice Course at Central School of Speech and Drama and introducing undergraduate Circus and Puppetry degrees to UK Higher Education. Jessica also founded the Masters course in Creative Producing which she now leads.  Through her work in education Jessica has supported the learning of an extraordinary range of people now working across the theatre and wider performing arts industries.

During the course of our conversation we cover:

  • Learning through asking questions and finding your community
  • Massive jam tarts
  • Producing as project management, people management and storytelling
  • The journey of self belief
  • Standing on the shoulders of giants
  • Factors that influence excellence in theatre training
  • Theatre as a prototyping process
  • Starting with your means to avoid barriers
  • Elements of being a successful producer
  • The importance of connecting to your own values
  • Designing learning experiences that students own
  • Models for evaluating projects and extracting learning.


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