The Young Talent Showcase 2020


This has been our biggest Young Talent Showcase yet! We have received incredible entries this year and we would like to congratulate all those nominated, who have been selected from over 420 submissions. Our judging panel of four acclaimed casting directors and industry experts have now decided which three young performers have won Mandy’s Young Talent Showcase 2020! Please also check out our Members Choice winner, voted for by our talented community.

Read the judges feedback below and join us in congratulating the winners. We would like to thank every young performer for taking part and for supporting a worldwide community of the industry's next generation of talent!


Ellie-Mae Siame - WINNER

"A very accomplished young actress. Could see the emotion in her eyes. Impressed with her composure. Believed her." - Tree Petts
"Very clever of Ellie-Mae to choose a scene from Finding Nemo and to perform it with so much emotion." - Carolyn McLeod
"I really liked this girl - she has lovely expressive eyes and was right in the moment - impressive." - Jo Hawes

"Great sense of focus and commitment." - Mark Hedges

Leo Franky

"Confident. Very good at singing and playing at the same time. Very very impressed that he both wrote and composed this song. Shows a talent well beyond his age." - Tree Petts
"Wow, such musicality at only 5! Well done Leo, loved his composition and he also has nice tone.  If he keeps this up I can see a Matilda or School of Rock type production in his future!" - Carolyn McLeod
"He was the stand out of the entire group - just phenomenal for his age. It will be amazing to see how he develops." - Jo Hawes
"Very Tuneful. Lovely composition. Good connection to the text and also the camera. Great playing and technique" - Mark Hedges

Matilda Kent

"Great singing, brings pathos and emotion to the performance" - Tree Petts
"Matilda took a risk, by doing such a well known piece, but I really liked her interpretation of Cosette, and the fact that she engaged well with the camera and had nice moments when she looked away / whispered to her toy." - Carolyn McLeod
"She sang quite well but she fell into the trap that so many fall into - Castle On a Cloud is not a sad song. It is a daydream - a place where Cosette escapes to and as such she is happy.- Jo Hawes
"Remember that Cosette is dreaming of a better life. I felt that your story telling was a little too negative. Cosette, at her young age has experienced a great deal so she is very spirited. It isn't a melancholy song - it is full of positivity and hope." - Mark Hedges

Ellila-Jean Wood - WINNER!

"The quality of self written monologue was very good. Brilliantly acted - hit the right level of emotion" - Tree Petts

"Well-written monologue, really liked the way that Ellia-Jean expressed emotion, nice interpretation of the piece." - Carolyn McLeod

"This was a heartbreaking performance - very moving!"  - Jo Hawes

Seyi Andes-Pelumi

"Confident. Well placed emotion. Could feel his anger and confusion" - Tree Petts

"I’d love to know whether Seyi wrote his monologue, powerful stuff." - Carolyn McLeod

"He was not afraid to take his time which I liked and he has a lovely, expressive face. - Jo Hawes

"Lovely honest acting. Good use of pause and thought. Really good bridging from emotion to emotion." - Mark Hedges

Holly Lawton

"Well learned, a good performance. Needs to relax a bit and take her time to get the full colour of the performance but still very well done" - Tree Petts
"Really interesting choice for her monologue, nicely delivered. - Carolyn McLeod

"I found this performance a bit rushed - some of the words disappeared as a result which was a pity because where that didn’t happen she was lovely." - Jo Hawes

Good choice of piece. Interesting story telling and nice dynamics. Don't be afraid of using. It allows the character to think." - Mark Hedges

Tia Watts - WINNER!

"Very strong performance. Plays both characters well. Shows range of emotion. Very believable." - Tree Petts

"Great to choose a piece that enabled Tia to really show some range and an emotional arc for the character." - Carolyn McLeod

"Lots of emotion within this monologue - beautiful!" - Jo Hawes

I thought your connection to the text was great." - Mark Hedges

Lila Falce-Bass

"Very strong emotional vocal range.  Her voice is very clear. She should watch that her hands do not convey the emotion and take away from her superb voice." - Tree Petts

"Huge song, Ragtime is a phenomenal musical with some iconic performances over the years. Lia made a very bold choice to showcase her vocals with that number, which is always to be applauded." - Carolyn McLeod

"Gorgeous powerful voice" - Jo Hawes

"ONE OF MY FAVOURITE MUSICAL THEATRE SONGS - WOW. Performed so beautifully. And what a gorgeous voice. Good connection to the character and the heart breaking text/story. Just be aware of diction." - Mark Hedges

Amelia Patience

"I could hardly hear her,  Even when saying her name. The ident needs to be clear and strong however she said her name very softly and then went straight into performance which was pitched at the same level. I liked the nuance of Amelia’s performance but had to strain to hear. There needs to be a bit more colour in the performance." - Tree Petts

"Really appreciated Amelia’s understated delivery." - Carolyn McLeod

"Good monologue - lots of emotion - pipped to the post in 3rd place by the strength of the other two. - Jo Hawes

"I felt there wasn't much difference in thought. Try exploring more emotion and energy change. " - Mark Hedges


Joshua Atoyebi - WINNER

We're thrilled to congratulate Joshua Atoyebi as the winner of the Mandy's Members Choice Award for 2020! Joshua's entry has been voted the best of all submissions by fellow performers and peers out of a massive 420 entries! 


Tree PettsTree Petts CDA
Casting Director
(John Lewis, Gucci Kids, Coca-Cola)

Carolyn McLeodCarolyn McLeod
Casting Director
(BBC, Netflix, Disney)
Jo HawesJo Hawes CDG
Casting Director
(Oliver!, Les Miserables, Mary Poppins)
Mark HedgesMark Hedges
Director and Choreographer
(Oliver!, Les Miserables, The Whiz)
Tree Petts

Tree Petts CDA is a renowned casting director with a career spanning over 20 years. Having cast over 1,000 commercials in the UK and internationally, Tree specialises in traditional casting, street casting and working with children. Tree has worked on many award-winning commercials and campaigns for brands such as John Lewis, Pampers, Gucci Kids and more. She has cast music videos for well-known artists, such as Take That, and is a founding member of the Casting Directors Association.

Carolyn McLeod has worked in casting for over 15 years and is a member of the Casting Society of America. She has worked with directors including Stephen Herek, Paul Schrader and Sofia Coppola. Carolyn has worked on TV and film projects for Netflix, BBC, ITV, Hallmark and Disney, with some of her projects including: The Ballad of Billy McCrae, Sweetheart, A Royal Christmas, Netflix's A Christmas Prince series and Boiling Point.

Jo Hawes

Jo Hawes CDG has decades of experience in the industry and was recently awarded the 2020 Olivier Special Recognition Award. She has enjoyed success working as the Children’s Casting Director for Oliver! at the London Palladium, as well as for Les Miserables in London and the touring productions: Mary Poppins, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and more. Jo runs a variety of courses and classes for children in the UK and abroad, including Masterclasses in the Art of Auditioning.

Mark Hedges

Mark Hedges has over 20 years of experience working as an esteemed actor, choreographer and director. His varied career steered him to his current roles as Resident Director of The Phantom of the Opera on London’s West End and the Children’s Director on the Les Miserables UK Tour. Mark founded and runs West End Prep - a musical theatre training school in Newcastle. It provides professional training to young performers, helping to prepare them for a life in the Arts.

The Prizes

We have brought together some of the best providers in the industry to create a prize package that will enhance your career. Check out the career-boosting prizes below.

The Tinies (4 to 7 years old) Winner:

Mandy Child Actors - Annual Premium Mandy Membership, worth £129
AMIDAS Photography Studio - Deluxe Headshot Portfolio Collection, plus more!
Captain Fantastic - Virtual party
The Mandy Network - 1:1 coaching session with the experts at Mandy

The Inbetweeners (8 to 12 years old) Winner:
Mandy Child Actors - Annual Premium Mandy Membership, worth £129
North London Photography - Professional headshot shoot
The Shed - One hour Coaching Session with an industry expert
The Mandy Network - 1:1 coaching session with the experts at Mandy

The Teens (13 to 17 years old) Winner:
Mandy Child Actors - Annual Premium Mandy Membership, worth £129
MAD Photography - Professional headshot shoot
The Shed - One hour Coaching Session with an industry expert
BFI - Free three month subscription to BFI Player
The Mandy Network - 1:1 coaching session with the experts at Mandy

Members Choice Award (Voted by Mandy peers):
Mandy Child Actors - Annual Premium Mandy Membership, worth £129
Industry Eye (Adam P. Murphy)- Virtual coaching audition session
Dominic Nicholls Photography - Professional headshot shoot
The Mandy Network - 1:1 coaching session with the experts at Mandy

Submitting your Video

Submitting your video couldn’t be easier and our Young Talent Showcase is open to all young performers across the world. You'll find the submission process at the bottom of this page and we've broken it down into three simple steps:

  1. Record your video and save the final file on your device or computer.
  2. Select the category you are entering: The Tinies (4 to 7 years old), The Inbetweeners (8 to 12 years old), The Teens (13 to 17 years old) - All videos submitted are automatically entered into the Members Choice 
  3. Click 'Pick File' and Upload your final video clip, ensuring its under 200mb in size - and hit apply.

Read before submitting

  • Keep it short! Your video should be no more than two minutes long.
  • Please don't upload a showreel!
  • Don't worry about budget - get a parent with a steady hand to capture your performance on a smartphone, tablet or laptop.
  • No profanity and no nudity, please.
  • Our Showcase is open to all Mandy Child Actors members worldwide.
  • Only 1 entry per member permitted.
  • Deadline for entries is: 15th June 2020, 23:59 BST
  • Submissions may be used by the Mandy Network for marketing purposes.
  • Submissions will be searchable and visible on the web.
  • For privacy reasons, we cannot accept videos featuring children other than the one entering the Showcase.
  • Members submitting videos should acknowledge that they own the copyrights to their video. 
  • We take votes for our Members Choice category very seriously and we reserve the right to disqualify any member suspected of falsifying votes for their entry.
  • Any member using Mandy's internal mail function to spam others for the sake of the Showcase risks their entry being banned.