A passion for acting
REBECCA MacRae is one name you'll want to remember.
The Rukenvale girl had more than one reason to celebrate her recent 16th birthday. That was the day she found out she was rural NSW's only recipient for this year's prized Jan Levett scholarship for drama - a prestigious and highly competitive $10,000 shot in the hip pocket which aims to encourage females in rural and remote communities pursuing the study of drama.
"It was a shock, I didn't expect it," Rebecca said.
"It was overwhelming - definitely. I was very happy."
"It definitely made for a great birthday."
Rebecca first started acting classes when she was eight, and has been passionate about it since.
Ever since I can remember, it's what I've wanted to do."
She has performed in drama productions at Kyogle High School, among others, and last year completed a two-week acting course with the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA) when they came to Lismore.
She said her parents were over the moon about the scholarship win.
"They were very happy, my dad was really proud."
She applied for the scholarship last October, submitting a 500-word application about being an aspiring actor living in rural NSW.
Rebecca spoke of her own high school drama teacher, Bobbie Sharpe, as her 'guiding light' in her acting career, and said she was inspired and influenced greatly by her.
Rebecca said she would love to study at an acting college, like NIDA, once she completes her HSC.
The outstanding scholarship provides Rebecca with some fantastic prizes and opportunities including transportation to and from Sydney and accommodation for five days and theatre tickets to productions for the Sydney Theatre Company and Belvoir St Theatre.
In addition, she'll get the opportunity to meet and discuss drama with professionals working within the industry; a visit to NIDA to meet with staff and discuss opportunities; $500 cash account; and a laptop.
Rebecca said she can't wait for her big trip to Sydney, and has her eyes firmly set on the bright future ahead of her.
"I'm hoping I will learn a lot (in Sydney) and get a lot of contacts which, when I finish school, can hopefully help me gain opportunities."