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IT’S a change of classroom and a huge change of school environment for Year 10 pupil Jasmin Rai as she plunges into the world of one of television’s grittiest dramas.

Jasmin can be spotted in the classroom of the BBC One hit show Waterloo Road, where riots, scandals and family dramas take up more time than the curriculum! Back here at Westbourne, as a school that majors in the arts, including drama and music, we’re proud to be able to provide a platform for Jasmin to embrace her acting talent. We’ve been behind the scenes to find out more. You can also catch up on the new series 11 of the compelling school drama on Tuesdays at 8pm on BBC One and BBCiplayer. 

Jasmin’s Westbourne profile:

  • At Westbourne: Reception to current Year 10 – a fantastic 11 years in total
  • GCSEs:  Drama, film studies, Spanish, photography, combined science, English and maths
  • Hoping to be a prefect
  • Favourite actors: The Marvel Cast, especially Scarlett Johansson because she is such a powerful woman and inspires me and many other girls around the world.

Tell us about your experiences on the set of Waterloo Road?

I’ve been part of the show since February last year as an extra. You’ll spot me in various school scenes in assembly and corridors. I can do up to two full days a week in Manchester when they’re filming, sometimes up to nine hours a day. I’ve met lots of the teachers and students including Angela Griffin who plays Kim Campbell the straight-talking Head Teacher, I can tell you she’s lovely. Mr Hattam’s professional life is a piece of cake compared to what she has to handle on set between pupil behaviour, fights, tricky staff issues and much more!

What’s it like being on a TV series?

Amazing, it’s a dream come true. At first I was nervous, but now it’s easier and I find it really exciting. I’ve learnt a lot about being respectful and working with different people. Teamwork is so important for a TV show, being patient too, when you’re waiting to go on set. It’s really helped with my confidence and belief in my own acting skills.

Do you do any other extra activities at Westbourne?

Editor: We’re not sure how Jasmin sleeps with the list as long as her arm!

I do Westbourne’s drama (LAMDA) exams and am currently preparing to do a Grade 5 duologue with my friend Holly.  I also love musical theatre and have done my singing exams up to Grade 7. I’m part of the whole school musical, Bring It On! as one of the principal cast, Danielle. I help out on activities for the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme. I also love to support our younger pupils and am a Junior School reading mentor.

Has being at Westbourne helped with your career?

I’ve been at Westbourne for 11 years, the school has given me so many opportunities in and outside of the classroom. Whether it’s the Ridgeway residentials in Scotland, Duke of Edinburgh, singing lessons and the chance to be in some brilliant drama productions. It’s a great place to study because the school realises your passions and teachers do their very best to make it work for you. 

What’s your dream next step? 

I’d like to go into acting professionally, especially films and TV. Last term Westbourne’s careers fair really opened my eyes to the different pathways I can take, so I’m currently considering my options.

A word from Jasmin’s mum

“The support the whole school gives Jasmin really makes the  process so easy. They also know her so well and know that if she needs extra time she’s genuine. Being at Westbourne as long as Jas has, her teachers have seen her grow up and I know they are as excited and proud as we at home are when such amazing things are happening for her.”

Good luck Jasmin on your journey to the stage and screen!

In the meantime, Jasmin, will be playing a leading role in our show Bring It On! on March 23 and 24 at the Montgomery Theatre. The show is open to the public and tickets are available now at https://www.westbourneschool.co.uk/news/bring-it-on-tickets-out-now/

Your choice. Their future.

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