Society of Dramatic Arts – Interview with President Daniel Chedgzoy (Short version)

Photo by Daniel Chedgzoy

To read the full interview with Daniel and find out even more about the Society of Dramatic Arts, click here.

Describe your society in one sentence.

The Society of Dramatic Arts (SODA) is a place for anyone who has a passion for creating theatre and making work they can be proud of.

What is your main goal/plan as a society?

SODA was formed primarily to give opportunities to perform and explore theatre to students. These opportunities have varied from play writing to performing to devising and most recently the opportunity to work with the drama Department in Producing Theatre for Edinburgh Fringe which some members will be heading up to Edinburgh this summer to do.

What are your main goals/plans for the future?

As of now SODA is still thinking about 2019-2020 but we still plan on offering amazing opportunities. We have a Theatre trip lined up for fresher’s week where we are going to see falsettos at The Other Palace. We also want to continue offering out performance opportunities, there will definitely be another play in the coming year and combined with that we also want to produce original work. We also plan on growing our relationship with the drama department in hopes of securing acting opportunities for the shows that head up to Edinburgh. This past year we were offered the chance to apply for crew roles which was an amazing opportunity, but we’d like to expand that to performance opportunities.

What drives me personally as a president?

Honestly, this past year, being the V.P was one of the most exhausting things I’ve undertaken. Then I’d go to rehearsals and see the joy those sessions meant to all the members. At the end of the year, we performed a show. It honestly meant so much to me, seeing how happy it made all the members, When I would see someone at the beginning who was unsure of themselves, but by the end was so confident. It’s these things that make it worth it.

What do you love most about the society?

I’m going to sound like a broken record, but it’s genuinely the people. If I didn’t enjoy spending time with the members of the society, I would never have applied to be president.

Who can join/what do your members look like?

Anyone and everyone! Any shape, size, race, religion, any person. All are welcome!

Is there a fee? If so, what is it used for?

There is! The fee going into 2019/20 is going to be £10, this is all given back to our members in the form of trips to plays (which we cover part of the ticket price), props and costume for shows along with all the other fees that come with putting on a show (we learnt last year, there is a lot of them!). We’re also in talks with Greenwich Theatre about setting up a ticket scheme that would involve us getting free tickets for our members!

By Anne Blombach
Second year Creative Writing student, active member of SODA and FemSoc and avid dog lover. Born and raised in Germany, chose London as my home in 2016. When I grow up, I want to become a journalist to provide information and raise awareness for mental illnesses and the rights of pretty much any living creature. My friends would describe me as a creative and extroverted person with great organisational skills and a passion for music and especially concerts.

The Crow’s Nest is a Greenwich Students’ Union Student Media channel. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of GSU, its trustees, employees, officers or the University of Greenwich.

How Green is Greenwich?

What are you willing to sacrifice for the survival of our planet?

A second to turn off lights when you leave a room.

A minute of your time sharing a post on facebook.

Carry a keep cup or a reusable bag.

Walking rather than getting the bus.

Give up meat and dairy.

Back in October, a group for students met to discuss what we could do to help Greenwich be greener. The group threw ideas around and the outcome was the ThinkGreen Society.

There are many students who do their bit for the environment but as a Students’ Union, we want to do more, we acknowledge the need to play our part in combatting the effects of climate change and we take action to move towards a greener Greenwich.

Last month I held drop-in sessions for people who had ideas about what projects we should run. We created a Group on Facebook to discuss these projects and share any ideas we see when we are out and about London.

The SU has voted on having “No Single Use Plastics at GSU”. This means in our outlets we stop giving out plastic cutlery and straws with our food and drinks sold in Change Coffee, Village Shop and Lower Deck. (Please note, We will stock bio-degradable flexible straws in the Lower Deck available on request for anyone who requires this).

Change Coffee have been using plant-based lids for their coffees for a while now and will continue to do this for all beverages. Lower Deck use biodegradable plates made from plant leaves at events. So, we already do lots in these outlets but are keen to go the next step.

This is a call to action – Act now, stop sharing green posts on social media if you are still using a plastic wrap for sandwiches, still using plastic cutlery at coffee shops.

Join Eco Team Greenwich and join in an environmental project today. The planet is not going to save itself. (If this sounds like your kinda thing Join Here!)


The Crow’s Nest is a Greenwich Students’ Union Student Media channel. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of GSU, its trustees, employees, officers or the University of Greenwich.


Henry’s Delegate Diary Day 3

So the final day has come and the seven of us were sat in the conference hall at 9am awaiting the last bits of business for NUS National Conference 2019.

Ohh boy I am tired, nonetheless fuelled up by coffee and hotel biscuits we are here on day 3.

We firstly voted through the reports from liberation conferences, (Mature, LGBT+, Disabled, Trans and Black Students) – And nations reports (Scotland, Wales, and NUS USI). We voted through all reports.

Motions from the Union Development and Citizenship and Society were debated and passed, and although some good work was done, many policies were not discussed, however, a debate between which city is better Birmingham and Manchester happened… So yea… That was a good use of time.

We had elections for Block of 15 who are like the student council of NUS, Elections for Student Directors (Like trustees) and the Democratic Procedures Committee. These are the guys to make sure that all debates are fair and policies are kept. Our very own Nathalie Grigorenko stood and we wait to see how she did! Best of luck Nathalie.

Drama alert: Conference floor delegates stood up and turned their back on a delegate who on day 2 praised the re-election of Israeli Benjamin Netanyahu who’s government has been killing Muslims in Palestine. Not a smart move by the delegate.

Business closed and final speeches were made from outgoing President Shakira Martin and we all decided to enjoy a bit of Glasgow before or train home.

Glasgow is beautiful for those who have never been, and is totally worth the 5 hour train from Euston. We had some laughs, lots of debate and not nearly enough sleep but that’s all from us. Thanks for following the diary and feel free to catch any of us if you fancy attending conference next year!!

Henry’s Delegate Diary – Day 2

Day 2 was the day of reform, NUS needed to change how its business was done. Structures were complicated and not fit for purpose. The NUS Board devised a huge turnaround proposal to cut spending and keep NUS alive.

Delegates debated for 4 hours on all suggested amendments to the bill (15 of them) and came out the other side with a number of adjustments. Full Story here

National Executive Council was scrapped which I was happy to see go. This was a body of students holding council and making decisions and scrutinising full-time officers. If you haven’t heard of it, it is because it’s not effective, transparent or efficient. A new “Scrutiny Committee” replaced the NEC.


Overall the reforms are passed and NUS lives to see another day, the output overall will fall but let’s hope the work still reaches Greenwich and its students.

We also voted to keep the NUS Trans Campaign, Two Year Officers Terms and leaving space for more liberation officers if there is money for it.

We also voted on a number of motions for the Welfare and Education Zones, some highlights were the stance against islamaphobia and anti-semitism.

It was a long day of debate and we decided to get some well-earned food and rest. Joined by City SU VP Education and incoming president Tuna!

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Henry’s Delegate Diary Day 1

Day 0- And we are off…

Only a hop, skip and jump, or rather a train, plane, and taxi. Five delegates and our staff support headed up to Glasgow and settled into our accommodation. We all got some rest ready for the first day of action at NUS Conference 2019. On board: Henry, Panth, Nathalie, Vincent, Marian, and Chiron. Meike had arrived two days before!

We go to NUS conference to decide who we want to lead the NUS, decide what we want them to work on and to hold officers accountable for their promises made at last years conference.

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Tight Squeeze on the flight! 

Day 1 – Elections

Delegates fueled up and headed over to the conference center all lugging Meike’s campaign materials to spread the word about why #NUSNeedsMeike. All delegates attended training to understand how the conference works and we were told about the scale of the NUS Reforms! We were told that without the proposed changes NUS would not exist!

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A morning walk to wake up the brain! 

Elections are a chance for delegates to chose who they want to lead the NUS in the coming year – at the time of writing this I am sat with Meike who waits to stand, give her speech and win (hopefully) – We wish you all the best #SheWillAlwaysBeMyPresident!

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What happened on day 1:

Conference Voted in condemn Islamophobia and Anti-Semitism through motions. Conference also approved the minutes from last conference and the reports from the fulltime officers. The conference heard the speeches of prospective candidates for election. Meike absolutely smashed her speech!

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Meike, unfortunately, came up short but has done all of Greenwich so proud! She came in 3rd and had huge numbers of second preferences. Well done to all new incoming officers and best of luck for the coming year!

Day 2 will be about the big reforms!


Creating sound for the Film Industry with Mark Ulano

(Photography by Tony Zetterstrøm)

On 1st April 2019, the University of Greenwich film department was visited by Mark Ulano, the Multi Award Winning Production Sound Designer for films such as Titanic, Kill Bill and Iron Man to name but a few.

Mark hosted a lecture based on his position as a Sound Designer, what he had to do to be the Sound Designer he is today and what Sound Design truly means in the world of film.

When discussing the production process, he states that he starts where most other members of the industry usually start, when offered a job for a film he sits with the script. Now while some will read the script in their own time, Mark does not believe in that, he locks himself away from his family, friends and pets and makes sure that he read the script in one sitting. When reading the script he refuses to take an analytical/technical approach to it, but instead takes an objective approach to it.

He reads it as if it were a novel or something, to find if his attention has been caught, once he has read it and it has his attention, he contacts the director to have a sit down with them and then starts finding out what he needs to do. With this, he discusses a meeting with James Cameron: “During a meeting with Jim to discuss beginning work on Titanic, he said something to me which has stuck with me to this day – Don’t give me what I ask for, give me what I need!” He then asked the audience to think about it for a minute, what could be meant by that statement.

This led me to think about it and how, in a creative industry it’s fine attempting to do EXACTLY what a Director asks of you, or what the person in charge asks of you… BUT ARE YOU standing out to anyone? What impact are you making and what special thing are you doing to make this work yours?

During the time Mark gave the audience to think, he stated that “To this day I still have not figured out a specific answer to this, but I’ve found several way’s I think it could be answered, which led me to find MY TAKE on production sound” this shows that when being a filmmaker or someone in a creative industry, you should take the initiative to be different, take a stance that will make you memorable and be more likely to be hired.

He also discussed the importance of listening to even the smallest detail of what is said in the meeting with the Director. In one instance, he spoke about having worked on a Bruce Willis film, which he wasn’t allowed to name, but that said he discussed something, that allowed for the Director to know how thorough he was. “During my meeting with the Director for this project, we were coming to the end of our lunch and he made a statement which threw me off – Bruce is gonna call for a ‘SOUND PERSON’ while on set… ignore him, you and your crew ALL IGNORE HIM; I didn’t understand why but he wouldn’t say anything else. So I turned up to the set the next day and as I was told, half way through the shoot, Bruce called for sound, we all ignored him, no one went over and no one replied, after the break I finally went over and adjusted his microphone and he winked at me. It was then that I realised I was being tested, my team were being tested to know that we took direction and were being thorough and listened to the smallest detail.” Before hearing this, I never realised how important sliding small details into a conversation could be, it helped me understand that I need to do so to be able to know are people listening, are people truly respecting what I’m saying and will they do what I need them to, especially in such a professional environment.

I then had the opportunity to ask a question myself, which gave me an incredible insight into creating the disbelief in film through sound. I asked – “You worked on Iron Man 1 & 2 which much like Super 8 are films in the Sci Fi genre but unlike Super 8 is a film in the Superhero genre, which features more disbelief and sounds that would not normally be as prominent in our world like the armour being put together and taken apart? Could you discuss what it was like to create those sounds?” and Mark answered in a way I didn’t expect, instead of directly answering the question, he discussed the difference between John Favreau’s vision and the visions of James Cameron, Quentin Tarantino and JJ Abrams but to name a few, he said “You will never experience four more drastic differences when trying to create a film, you will never experience four more opposing ideas for what they want for sound, but that’s what I respected because each of them have their own approach, this allowed me to show them how I would then deliver what they need to them and make my impact, which has allowed me to work with them again.”

In the end, hearing all of this from someone who has had so many years in the industry gave me a new perspective on all creative professions I am involved in, hearing such inspiring insights I couldn’t go without letting others know his input on the industry and I hope you all enjoy hearing what he had to say.

If there’s a topic you’d like us to cover, or an issue that you think needs more awareness, let us know at

By Tommy Monkhouse

The Crow’s Nest is a Greenwich Students’ Union Student Media channel. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of GSU, its trustees, employees, officers or the University of Greenwich.


Events are Basically Instagram Coming to Life

Fyre Fraud

For the past decade, we saw social media evolving and taking the world by storm. As each year passed, our now favourite platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and Twitter have gained more and more power over us that allows them to shape our views and attitudes in unimaginable ways. The whole movement has not only allowed for celebrities to get more exposure but also made them into social media influencers who have become the trendsetters and human brands even more than ever before. Just add celebrity endorsements to a social media campaign and you will get a guide to a successful influencer marketing for your event.

A survey from WhoSay reports, 89% of U.S. agency and brand marketers believe influencer marketing can positively impact how people feel about their brand or product. This shines some light on why exactly Fyre Festival creators thought that involving Kendall Jenner to post a single Instagram post for £193,000 and launching a luxury marketing campaign with the other top 10 supermodels in the Bahamas was worth it.

From the event experiential marketing perspective, such an authentic and exclusive partnership for increasing event awareness is a sound idea and can lead to great results (Fyre Festival sold out in under 48h). The only problem here was the inexperienced event founder who was at the forefront of this whole fiasco, greedily robbing attendees of their money. Billy McFarland ignored all the financial warnings from his advising team and simply proceeded with promising to deliver the greatest music festival of all time. Through the influencer marketing, he was selling a false image of celebrities and influencers casually partying with attendees at the ‘luxury’ festival. Yet none of this was meant to be genuine.

Following the launch of the festival, hundreds of attendees and festival workers were left traumatised when Billy successfully fled the island. Bahamian locals who built the event site, camps and fed arrived attendees were left with nothing. He didn’t fix his disaster, he didn’t pay back the owned money, he didn’t live up to the expectations.

By creating misleading campaigns, McFarland defrauded millennials to pay him large sums of money for the vision they never received. He promised locals a 5-year event that will boost their economy. Billy is the one to be truly blamed for the Fyre Fraud and is now sentenced to six years in prison on multiple counts of fraud.

Rohan Midha, the managing director of influencer agency, said that while festival itself was a disaster, the influencer marketing behind it wasn’t. It simply goes to show how much power influencers have on the success of your event marketing.

Burning Festival

While involving influencers in your event marketing campaign can bring many positives, they can also affect the entire event culture. The lately spoken about non-for-profit Burning Man in Black Rock City is a great example this. The event that was supposed to decommodify its attendees, has increasingly changed towards marketing by becoming a tool for product launches and commercial photo shoots for Instagram.

You would wonder how is this affecting the attendees? Well, the original ‘burners’ used the event as an escape from financial and cultural restraints of mainstream society but with the elite attendees, the event has become more like an outside world. It simply goes against the event’s ethos.

For the past 3 years, event organisers have received backlash for enabling businesses to sell ‘all-inclusive,’ luxury event packages that attract influencers and rich demographic to Humano camp. The current ticket pricing is also discriminating against the original attendees of lower income. They believe Burning Man experience is meant to be a counterculture gathering of people from all backgrounds. No divide, no discrimination only harmony and uni.

By Melisa Bazane

The Crow’s Nest is a Greenwich Students’ Union Student Media channel. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of GSU, its trustees, employees, officers or the University of Greenwich.

Help! I’m Drowning in Books! 3 Tips to Survive the Bookload

Image by Morganfayx

When I first started studying at Greenwich, I was completely overwhelmed with the workload, which mostly consisted of what seemed to me at the time (and sometimes still does) as tonnes and tonnes of reading. I think most of us will agree that it’s a big shock, perhaps particularly when coming to uni straight from A-Levels, that you pretty much have to finish a book per week/ fortnight (considering that at 6th form we’d spend a whole term on one book). Never fear, my fellow procrastinators; here are some tips to help you focus and manage your reading schedule that will hopefully make the task of reading less stressful to those who, like me, find it a struggle. These tips can also be applied to other homework and deadlines you need to meet!

Tip number 1: Timing!

This is perhaps the most obvious, but also the most important tip about deadlines in general, not just finishing a book ahead of a seminar: DON’T LEAVE IT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE! We all tell ourselves that we’re going to start a book weeks in advance, and then panic when it gets to two days before it’s due to be read and we’ve got a fat 500 pages sitting in front of us, unread. My suggestion of a solution to this recurring problem is to set yourself a certain amount of pages everyday up until the deadline. If we can find out how many pages there are, and how long we’ve got before we have to have read the book, we can work out the number of pages we roughly need to read per day in order to achieve the deadline. Breaking a scary looking book down into manageable chunks may help us avoid procrastinating as a result of it looking unmanageable in its entirety. As well as this, having a daily goal of so many pages may keep us motivated to achieve these individual goals, as they are easier than thinking of the whole book as a larger and more difficult goal.

Tip number 2: Rewards

If you’re like me and tend to prefer the company of movies over a book (I have spent nights longing to watch Disney’s Finding Nemo, but instead have found Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre sitting expectantly in front of me), why not set yourself so many pages, then reward yourself for reading them with what you want to do! This doesn’t have to be a movie either; in my case, I read a bit of a book, then watch a bit of a movie as a reward for my progress- you could read some pages, then go for a walk, or play some sport, or whatever it is you enjoy doing. Ultimately, this tip is about making sure you give yourself a break after working through difficult tasks for a period of time!

Tip number 3: Environment

A lot of the time I believe my struggles with being able to focus stem from being in the wrong environment. I have tried reading in a busy setting, surrounded by people who are doing or talking about things that seem much more interesting than the book or text I have in my hand, and I end up putting it down to join in! If you find yourself in the same situations that prevent you from focussing on working or reading, why not try finding a quiet space to focus- if you’re in university accommodation, your room there is a perfect spot designed for studying! If you live with other people, why not find a secluded spot where you can really focus on a task? For me, Greenwich Park is a perfect place for reading or working (take gloves in the winter); you can find nice spot to sit amongst the beautiful scenery during the daytime, where it’s peaceful and easy to work!

I hope these are some helpful tips that help anyone out there struggling with the weight of their workload at uni, reading or otherwise. Try to allow yourself enough time to complete tasks in order to avoid panic, but don’t stress if you make mistakes with regards to time management! Grab yourself a cup of tea and relax.

By Morganfayx

The Crow’s Nest is a Greenwich Students’ Union Student Media channel. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of GSU, its trustees, employees, officers or the University of Greenwich.


Picture by Melisa Bazane

It is our pleasure to welcome you to the new student website, The Crow’s Nest. This is where we will be posting articles, photos and videos on topics that students actually want see.

Of course, we can’t read your minds, so if there is something that you want us to write about, do let us know!

We’re aiming to entertain and accommodate everyone and we as writers hope that we achieve this. However, that being said, if you do have an issue with anything that we’ve written, please don’t hesitate to contact us and we can get it sorted as quickly as possible!

We hope that you enjoy our website and keep your eyes peeled for new content being uploaded all the time!


Your Resident Student Lookouts

The Crow’s Nest is a Greenwich Students’ Union Student Media channel. The views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of GSU, its trustees, employees, officers or the University of Greenwich.