Film Student

Madalina Azur

School: Coombe Girls School

At Esher: 2019-2021

Subjects studied: Drama and Theatre Studies, Film Studies, and French

Why did you choose Esher Sixth Form College?

I wanted to go to a sixth form college rather than a school sixth form. I felt that the staff’s specialisation in teaching individuals of my age would provide me with a more tailored experience. Esher College stood out with its strong reputation and impressive results. When I visited, I saw the teachers’ enthusiasm for the subjects they taught, and this confirmed my initial impressions.


What were your course highlights at Esher?

One of the highlights of my time at Esher was the strong bond I formed with my teachers. They took the time to get to know us and treated us like adults rather than just pupils. I could go to them with any concerns, and our discussions often extended beyond the course material, this made me feel like I had a level of friendship and mutual respect.

As a Drama student, I also really enjoyed going to see various theatre shows. Experiencing these high-quality productions has been invaluable and I was very grateful for this opportunity.


How did your teachers inspire you?

My teachers’ enthusiasm for their subjects was the most inspiring aspect of being at Esher, and my relationship with my teachers made me feel heard. Their passion inspired me and knowing that they had my best interests at heart and believed in my potential motivated me to strive for excellence.

What are you doing now?

Currently I am looking to enter the film industry, as I will be graduating from Falmouth University in May. My university experience has been the perfect mix of practical and theoretical learning, allowing me to explore and develop my film philosophies but also learn and refine the essential skills needed to thrive on professional film sets.

I’m currently in the process of applying for positions, with a keen interest in roles such as Production Assistant or similar people-facing roles within the industry. I am eager to apply my knowledge and passion and I can’t wait for my career journey to begin.

What have been your highlights so far?

To date, I have worked on over 10 student productions and I have had the opportunity to network and learn from industry professionals. The single most valuable thing I have learnt was a day-long intimacy workshop, which was led by Rose Ryan, an intimacy coordinator for films such as Magic Mike. We learnt how to make actors and crew feel comfortable on set, and how to ensure consent is always honoured on a film set, particularly in intimate scenes such as when nudity or simulated sex is involved. This supported me when I took a role as an intimacy choreographer in a student film, where I was responsible for directing a passionate make out scene between two actors.

My course has also allowed me to be completely professional in filmmaking. Our equipment and processes align closely with industry standards, so I feel completely equipped to apply my skills in the workforce. From being at Falmouth University, I have 2 years’ experience using a Sony FX6 camera, which is one of the latest cinema cameras to come out and gives me many opportunities to continue using the kit I have become comfortable with over the past few years as I move forward in my career.

What advice would you give to your 16-year-old self?

The biggest piece of advice I needed to hear when I was 16 was that you only have to worry about the next step. Planning too far in advance ends up stressing you out, and then often you don’t question whether your priorities or desires have changed since you made your initial plan. As long as you have a sense of direction, the five-year plan is a bit of a myth. Everything is evolving so quickly that the job you have when you’re 25 might not even exist today. For example, the job I want has only existed for less than 10 years.

What is your favourite chocolate bar and why?

A Kit Kat is my go-to. Good crunch, not too sweet and wafers are delicious.