Meet Stephen Surridge
Founder of E-Drama and our August 2020 Pre-Accelerator attendee.
Thinking of connecting with Stephen? “I’m currently on target for a Spring 2021 launch and looking for other entrepreneurs looking to innovate the industry.”
“I created the world’s first Internet soap opera; I’ve made video films for Prince Charles; I worked on several of the UK’s leading legacy TV shows; I’ve trained in screen acting with Hollywood’s #1 screen acting coach.”
Q1: Could you introduce YOUR STARTUP, E-DRAMA, to us?
Stephen: I’m building the world’s first immersive Web TV broadcast drama training school, E-Drama.
Technology has changed the drama training landscape. But the traditional drama schools remain outdated, teaching stage acting techniques in this Netflix digital TV age with 90% of students giving up on their acting dreams within 6 to 12 months of graduating because they remain ‘invisible actors’ – nobody knows they can act.
Using low cost digital video camera, video editing technologies and the Web TV broadcast platform, plus my training with Hollywood’s #1 screen acting coach, a new approach is possible, teaching actors relevant screen acting techniques and significantly giving them immersive on-set acting training and broadcast exposure to launch their careers.
Putting this alongside my huge passion for TV production and the soap opera genre, this is where my concept has come from.
Q2: WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR EXPERIENCES WHILST BUILDING YOUR STARTUP?
Stephen: I originally developed the concept whilst running the world’s first community produced Internet soap opera – Chalkhill Lives – between 2002 and 2009. This developed out of a community project I set up in Portsmouth.
I started to realise the potential of the idea; the lack of quality immersive screen acting training available to aspiring UK actors and how much fun running the soap brought me.
Taking time out for several years to learn sales and marketing skills while waiting for Web TV to embed itself within society, with Netflix changing the broadcast landscape, I see now is the perfect time to progress with this pioneering idea.
My journey has been one of playing the long game, keeping myself mentally positive whilst holding the vision, and up-skilling myself to be ready for this moment in time. I’m looking forward to enjoying myself taking this pioneering concept to market.
Q3: WHAT PARTS OF our Pre-Accelerator DID YOU FIND HELPFUL FOR the development of E-DRAMA?
Stephen: The detailed market research – Persona Canvas and client interviews – which pushed me to widen my research, has given me more product ideas and made me aware of previously unseen markets.
Q4: What would you tell another founder who is considering joining our Pre-Accelerator?
Stephen: Do it! Commit to it to get the best out of it. But it will definitely help you develop personally and tangibly develop your business vision. Thank you soooooooooo much for the experience and the learning 🙂