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LIPA Actor cast in Harry Potter just months after graduating

Tuesday 12 December 2023

LIPA Actor cast in Harry Potter just months after graduating

Nairn Archer, who graduated from the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) in July 2023, has landed a role in the latest West End production of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. 

Nairn, who completed the BA (Hons) Acting, is swing, covering several characters including Craig Bowker Jr, Cedric Diggory and James Potter in the production that opened to audiences at The Palace Theatre in October. 

It follows 2022 Acting graduates Ruchi Rai and Tom Storey being cast in the show last autumn. We caught up with Nairn to talk about being a Harry Potter fan, working in the West End and preparing for auditions and rehearsals. 

How did you feel when you got the role?  

I couldn’t quite believe it.  I was definitely overwhelmed with a lot of feelings, but super excited to move to London and get started!  

Are you a Harry Potter fan? 

I grew up reading the books and watching the films.  It was mine and my grandparents’ thing to go and see a Harry Potter film every time one was released.  I also remember receiving my own copy of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child in 2016.  Bringing life to these characters that I grew up reading and watching has been so surreal. 

What does it mean to work on a high-profile West End show so soon after graduating? 

I feel so grateful to be working on such a high scale, physically demanding show like this and to be working with such a talented cast. As a graduate, it has been so beneficial to start my professional career in roles that require me to broaden my skill sets and take on new challenges, whether that be FOYs (theatrical flying) training or lifting work. 

Graduates Ruchi and Tom were in the production last year, have you been able to talk to them about it, have they told you what to expect or any advice?   

Ruchi was lovely enough to reach out and told me to throw myself straight into the experience. It was a very intense rehearsal period and I had to be switched on, especially as a swing, as I had to absorb information, choreography and tracks for multiple different roles. It was great to hear about her experiences and stories, and I’m excited to take over the mantle with the rest of the Year seven cast.   

How did your training at LIPA help prepare you for the audition and roles? 

After finding out about the first round of auditions I made sure to speak to my voice teachers about accent work as I knew my RP/Non-Standard English (NSE) would be a vital factor for the show. I used LIPA’s dance facilities to work out and prep my physical fitness for the latter auditions, as they were very movement heavy.   

You can find out more about Harry Potter and the Cursed Child here.