Patrons & Ambassadors

The performing arts can contribute to positive mental health, whilst promoting life skills and self-confidence.
The Garage is fortunate, therefore, to have the support of leading figures from our world, whose involvement in their home county charitable cause can help us turn dreams into reality for our cohorts of all ages and experience.


The reputations of our Patrons help shine a light on local talent, giving them a career model to which they can aspire and, through their leadership and voice, help spread our message to opinion formers, funders and the general public.

Anwen Hurt, Wife, Sir john Hurt, Actor, Actress, Lady Hurt, Film, Production, Women, Portrait, UK
Photo: Andi Sapey
Anwen, Lady hurt (she/her)
Anwen and her late husband Sir John Hurt made Norfolk their home in 2008. She studied at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire of Music and worked as an actor and producer in theatre for a number of years. She then became Head of Production at Mad Cow Films, specialising in film and television advertising and music videos. She has produced and cast a number of feature films including In Love with Alma Cogan which was shot entirely in Norfolk. She’s Artistic Director of Holt Festival, pro-chancellor of NUA, a trustee of the Sir John Hurt Film Trust and a member of the board of management of Sheringham Little Theatre.
Anwen said: “I’m delighted to be joining as patron. Performing arts develop the confidence of any age group, but I’m especially mindful of how a feeling of belonging can benefit the health and well-being of disadvantaged young people and give them the life skills to find their own way in the world.”
Layton Williams
Photo: Yellow Belly Photos
Layton williams (he/him)

Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts trained, Layton began his career aged 12 playing Billy in the West End production of Billy Elliot, making his debut TV appearance as Kylie in the BBC comedy Beautiful People. His many theatre credits include Everybody’s Talking About Jamie (Apollo Theatre), Angel in Rent (London/UK Tour) and Young Michael in Thriller Live (West End). He reprised his role as Jamie in the Everybody’s Talking About Jamie (UK tour 2022), which played at Norwich Theatre Royal. His TV and film credits include Rocketman, Benidorm (ITV), Bad Education (BBC TV) and Murder They Hope (Gold). He was a finalist in the 2023 series of BBC TV’s Strictly Come Dancing.
He’s also the director of Pros From The Shows, which provides workshops for young performers across the country.

Layton said: “I believe everyone should have access to the arts. Being able to develop skills and explore techniques in a safe and supported space is incredibly important for children who may live in difficult circumstances; to build confidence and allow them to dream is a gift. I’ll 100% bring some FAB to Norfolk.”

Photo: Carl Proctor
SUsan KYD (she/her)

Sue is an actor, artist/designer and actor trainer. She continues to learn new skills and sees the importance of The Garage as a cultural dynamo in Norfolk.


All performing arts disciplines are represented by our team of Ambassadors who, whilst on upwardly mobile career paths, can inspire participants and students, demonstrating that through hard work, dedication and passion they can attain their full potential.

Alex Sturman
Photo: Adam Hill (Mug Photography)

Alex grew up in Taverham, just outside of Norwich. He first started dancing at Stagecoach Norwich, where he trained for several years in dance, singing and acting. He attended City College Norwich in preparation for auditions for musical theatre colleges in London. Alex graduated from Urdang Academy’s Dance and Musical Theatre National Diploma course. He’s a regular lecturer at Urdang Academy, teaching subjects including jazz and contemporary. He has performed in many productions including Sir Matthew Bourne’s tour of Swan Lake (UK, Asia and USA Tour), Edward Scissorhands (UK Tour), Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns, Classical Brit Awards and with Jessie J for Strictly Come Dancing.

Alex said: “Growing up in Norwich and not fully knowing where my journey could take me, was hard to see. By working with the trust, I want to make sure everyone who has an interest or wants a career in the arts, knows they 100% absolutely can, no matter what anyone else says.”

Photo: Gabriel
GABriel mokake (he/him)

Tanzanian born Gabriel was raised in Norwich. He graduated from The Guildford School of Acting’s (BA Hons) Musical Theatre course. His film credits include Pip 2 in Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (Netflix). His many theatre appearances include Man 6/Cover George Washington and Hercules Mulligan/James Madison in Hamilton (Victoria Palace Theatre) and Tiny Joe Dixon/Cover Marty in Dreamgirls (Savoy Theatre). He is set to play King Agnarr/Cover Kristoff in Frozen the Musical (Theatre Royal Drury Lane). He’s played Rasselas in The History of Rasselas: Prince of Abissinia (BBC Radio 4).

Gabriel said: “The Garage provided so many wonderful experiences and memories of my time in Norfolk as a young artist in training. I want to give back something. It’s amazing to have such facilities available for young artists to develop and build on their skills in a safe space. I’m looking forward to meeting and working with the artists and seeing their pathways blossom.”

Photo: Brandon Bishop

Lloyd trained at Rose Bruford College.
His many theatre credits include Once (UK Tour) and Sunny Afternoon (Harold Pinter Theatre, West End). His TV and film appearances include BBC shows Doctors and Tittybangbang and the film So What Are We Called (Blotched Ink/Show Me TV). His many composing credits include all of The Garage and The Workshop’s My First productions, The Pillowman (Norwich Playhouse) and Grimethorpe Race (The Arcola Theatre).

Lloyd said: “As a teenager, I watched The Garage be converted into the building you see today. As a young adult, I rehearsed and took classes at The Garage with The Theatre Royal Arts Courses. It is a vital resource and arts institution… Harnessing and nurturing the talent and enthusiasm of young people to encourage them to be whoever and whatever they want to be. I’m passionate about producing theatre for the county and feel privileged to be able to support The Garage, just as it has supported me.”

Photo: Antony Kelly (EDP)

Born and raised in Norfolk, Richard is described by The Stage as “one of the UK’s most prolific producers”. He’s produced over 250 productions in the UK and other countries, including 80 world premieres and 91 European, Australian, and US premieres that have received more than 60 major awards including the Olivier, TONY, and EMMY. A new writing and musical theatre specialist, he’s been at the forefront of developing and presenting works by a diverse range of established and emerging UK and international writers and artists. He often produces work with a strong social agenda which has been recognised with two Amnesty International Awards and the US Black Alliance Award. Richard is a recipient of the Norfolk Arts Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts.

Richard said: “I’ve long been an admirer of The Garage’s terrific achievements for young people. It’s a bustling hub of creative life for our city that’s making thrilling cultural connections and creatives discoveries. I’m excited to be involved.”