Being so close to London, means that we're only a few miles away from the west end and a tonne of amazing theatres. If you're into the arts, and going to see musicals, dramas and other plays then you'll love the London theatre scene!
Last month, my Mum came to stay with me for a few days - which was really lovely as we don't get to spend much time together since I live away for a large part of the year. Whilst she was down we decided to go to see a couple of musicals as we both enjoy going to the theatre when we can! My Mum is a big Dirty Dancing fan, so I bought her some tickets for a midweek performance (a quick tip of mine would be to try and book tickets for a midweek performance as often the theatres don't sell out, and you often get upgraded so you get better seats!). I bought cheap tickets for about £25 each for the upper circle, however we got given tickets in the stalls, which were valued at almost double the price! The show was great, and although I had never seen the film - I really enjoyed the performance and so did my Mum!
We also bought tickets for 'Matilda', as it was one of my favourite films when I was a kid so we thought we should see it. These tickets were a little more expensive because we went to a Saturday evening showing but I think they were well worth the price! Of all the musicals I have seen in London, I definitely think that this was one of the best yet! The children performing were amazing, the audience were in awe! How they remember all those lines I will never know! The story line is changed a little however it works so well on stage and I would definitely go and see it again! All the music is by Tim Minchin too, so that was an added treat!
As well as the main west end theatres in London, there are lots of smaller ones which house plays of smaller capacities. For Christmas, I bought one of my housemates tickets to go and see Othello being performed by the Icarus theatre group in Enfield. The tickets for this were extremely cheap, at only £7 each (small theatres often do deals for under 25's) and the theatre was really small and intimate. The theatre itself housed around 250 people and was really small, which made the play feel more personal, and to add to the personal effect - me and my friend ended up being on the same train home as the actors! J
So overall, another of my tips is to go and see as many plays as you can in London, (especially at cheap prices!!).
It's now the time of year where many of us KU students have to start thinking about our choice of modules for next year.This is extra important for me as it is my last year of University so the grades count even more than before. It is actually quite a daunting period as I think its important to have a good variety of modules studied as well as one or two which you have specialised in. For example I specialised in Marketing Applications last year.
On my course at Kingston (and it may be the same for others), I have the choice of whether the do a dissertation or not. I'm 100% sure I am as I think they look good on your CV. It can be really interesting for you as you can focus on an area which interests you. It is an achievement and it can provide a lot to talk about with future employers, as opposed to just another exam.
One thing I would say is there is a good variety of choices to pick from when you select your module choices for year two and year three! Which is great for having a bit of variety.
I hope you're not all frozen to the bone and drenched, the weather in winter isn't exactly my favourite...
First of all, I'm sorry for not blogging for a while! I've had so much going on that I have had to prioritise. Being in final year, deadlines are now coming closer and closer and that coupled with finding a new place to live and applying for my master's programme is pretty crazy. I'm not going to lie, uni can be quite stressful at times, but there are so many ways that Kingston helps us students get a bit of extra calmness and sanity into our busy schedules. I've blogged a tiny bit before about support from the academic side, and I know that some other ambassadors have done a great job at explaining the help you can get from tutors, librarians and other staff too. However, the following info is a bit more towards any kind of support that doesn't concern university work. Whether you're stressed about family issues, you feel overwhelmed with work or you're just trying to find a better work-life balance, KU has something for you!
The university has an amazing amount of free services that all students can use - something I only recently found out about! KU has drop-in sessions on anything from stress management to substance abuse advice, and ever more in-depth offers like focused counselling. Being away from my home country, I can empathise that sometimes it might be helpful to talk to someone confidentially about problems at university, when you don't want to discuss it with friends or family.
If talking about issues is not for you, the university provides other options to de-stress. During term-time, students can sign up for free yoga, meditation or relaxation classes, that you can attend regardless of faith or ability level. The idea is just to get some down-time into your day and promote a healthier (and saner) lifestyle. If all of that sounds to calm, then you can sign up for our university gym and power out any frustration about all those essay deadlines with fitness or boxing classes. Apparently the gym offers massages and osteopathy treatments at student-friendly prices too. Even if you can't find anything that suits your taste at KU, Kingston town centre has a range of places to go and relax. Anything from the Lush Spa to taking a walk along the beautiful Thames, there is bound to be something that takes your mind off assignments.
And remember: don't worry, be happy (classic).