020 7278 2101

info@youngactors.org.uk

– In Memoriam –
Andrew Harries
1964 – 2022

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Andrew was “a giant of a man, with a giant heart to match”.

Andrew became the Artistic Director of Young Actors Theatre Islington (YATI) in 2004. In that time roughly 6,000 local young people have counted themselves as members and thousands more have attended short-term courses at the drama school under Andrew, many of whom credit him directly for transforming their self-confidence.
Andrew always saw YATI’s raison d’etre as creating a future for children of the surrounding neighbourhood. Such is the strength of community that Andrew built at YATI that many staff are former ‘members’ supporting the next generation of Islington’s children to have a better and brighter future.
Through its successful agency and excellence in teaching under Andrew’s guidance, YATI has also played an important role in the development of industry professionals such as Academy award winner Daniel Kaluuya (Judas and the Black Messiah), Asa Butterfield (Sex Education), Franz Drameh (Legends of Tomorrow) Ella Purnell (Army of the Dead), Obioma Ugoala (Frozen the musical).

Andrew’s guestbook…

Please feel free to sign the Guestbook

 
 
 
 
We reserve the right to edit, delete, or not publish entries.
15 entries.
Michael wrote on 22/03/2022
Around 6 years ago, Andrew very kindly took me on as an Freelance lighting designer and I worked with him on a number of different shows at YATI. Thanks to his belief in me I am now working alongside some of the worlds largest brands, designing shows across the world. The work that YATI does for young people, in my opinion, is some of the most important work any institution in London (or the UK) does. Being exposed at a young age to theatre, art and culture is the bed rock of my abilities and interest in the work I do and Andrew played a massive part in giving me the confidence to go on and be successful. When I heard about his passing I can honestly say my heart sank to the bottom of my chest, he was a great man I’m truly sorry to hear he is no longer with us. I wish the entire team at YATI the very best of luck for the future!
Aurelie Burton wrote on 21/03/2022
Andrew was such an important person in my life. I loved the Acting Foundation course at YATI. Andrew was great fun, smiley and made me laugh. He made everything fun. He was so supportive and gave me confidence. When I think of him, I always see him smiling.
Amara and Anaiya Vaughan wrote on 21/03/2022
We were so shocked to hear the devastating news about Andrew. We will always remember how fun his classes were and how kind he was. My sister and I always felt safe in Andrew's lessons. Rest in eternal peace Andrew x
Alison, Bob and Avery Millett wrote on 21/03/2022
Andrew was a true figurehead at YAT - and an inspiration to so many. We feel so much gratitude for finding this special place which Andrew was such a big part of. Andrew was a brilliant director and his creativity and encouragement brought the best out of everyone involved in his productions. Thank you.
Yvonne Morley-Chisholm wrote on 21/03/2022
Andrew, you were one of the very best that I have ever had the privilege of working with and working for. As a director, teacher, collaborator and Artistic Director you worked with huge integrity, parity, imagination, courage and style. YATI has been delivering EXCELLENT training for so many years; the Foundation course remains way ahead of its competitors. You taught acting skills so very, very well. As a person, colleague and friend you were always resourceful, kind, honest, funny, compassionate and loyal. Today some of us were at your funeral; beautiful, poignant and honouring to you. Thank you for championing so much in so many - students and staff alike. Thank you for the indelible memories in my heart. Yvonne Morley-Chisholm
Milo Ghiandai wrote on 20/03/2022
Throughout my time at YATI it always felt like I was part of something greater than simply acting classes I attended every Tuesday. There was always a unique atmosphere. Andrew made YATI feel more like a family through the unending passion and energy he brought into every class, monologue night or show. Being at YATI has shaped who I am today and has changed so many individuals lives for the better and we owe it all to Andrew.
John Davis and Deborah Crewe wrote on 18/03/2022
Our daughter has been at YATI for the last few years and it was so obvious what a huge and wholly positive influence Andrew had there. the Jesus Christ Superstar production was insanely ambitious but accomplished with breathtaking quality and panache. Our daughter loved being in it and we loved watching it - Andrew will always have a place in our hearts for that alone. Sadly missed, long remembered. John and Deborah
Janine Bull wrote on 17/03/2022
Farewell Andrew. YAT was a big part of my daughter's lives growing up and they learnt far more than acting skills. They learnt about friendship and community as well as skills such as confidence. It was a place where they felt confortable and part of the YAT family. Ever present, I will always remember Andrew greeting the kids at the door to the theatre and the fabulous shows that were put on. My girls now have some fantastic memories of their time with the YAT family which we often talk about. Andrew you will be missed but you will certainly live on in peoples memories. Sleep peacefully. JANINE PHOEBE AND TILLY X
Elly Lee wrote on 16/03/2022
My year on the YATI Foundation Course was one of the best of my life - unfortunately I can’t make the funeral, but I’ll always remember Andrew as someone who shaped me as an actor and as a person♥️
Kimberly Blake wrote on 13/03/2022
A fantastic man who made be believe in myself before my final audition for my first West End job. Andrew called me to his office and told me to ‘stop apologising for myself’ because ‘you can get this role. You’re talented and you deserve it.’ He saw something in me I didn’t see in myself. Despite me having no degree or formal training, he was right. I got the role. 10 years later I’ve had a rich and varied west end career. Wonderful memories of his energy and spirit that carried Yat Islington and the amount of people changed forever by that magic place. Andrew was the life and soul of YATI and it won’t be the same without his energy. Holding my week old baby in my arms I’m reminded when one door closes, another one opens. RIP Andrew xxxxx
Sarah wrote on 13/03/2022
So shocked and upset that Andrew Harries has passed away. I cannot express how grateful I am to have known him and to have been taught by him. Andrew was one of the most generous and loving people I have ever met. I can honestly say that the year I did my foundation at Yat Islington was one of the happiest years of my life and I cherish it. Andrew gave a space for everyone to be safe to be themselves and grow and have fun. He really believed in me and helped me in so many ways. A brilliant teacher and creative, who I learnt so much from, and a truly one of a kind person. I will never forget you. I will continue to miss you and the hugs you gave. Lots of love to Andrew Harries’ family and friends, and lots of love to the YATI family that Andrew created. ❤️🙏💫🌱🍃💕
Denise Heywood wrote on 13/03/2022
His enthusiasm for getting the most out of all the children was unstoppable.
Steve Campbell wrote on 13/03/2022
Andrew was one of those people that within minutes of meeting them, you know they are a force for good. You know, value added for the whole country
Flynn Dennison wrote on 13/03/2022
“He taught us all so much and we all can’t thank him enough for the futures he set out for us. I wish I could thank him for what he’s done.”
Jamie wrote on 13/03/2022
Andrew enabled hundreds and hundreds of people to believe in themselves, and change their own lives. In the midst of the last years of global madness, Andrew was a voice of balance and compassion; we have lost a great man.
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