A YOUNG performer from Tillicoultry has taken a big step towards his dream career by gaining a place at one of the UK's leading performing arts academies.

Taylor Williams, currently at Alva Academy, will begin full-time training for a professional stage career in September after landing a coveted place on the BA (Hons) Musical Theatre course at The MGA Academy of Performing Arts in Edinburgh.

The 16-year-old impressed staff at The MGA Academy during an intensive audition and was delighted when, days later, he received by post a letter of acceptance that allows him to remain in Scotland while studying at a level equivalent to prestigious London schools.

Taylor, who turns 17 this month, prepared for the renowned Edinburgh school by enrolling last year with the Beyond Broadway production company in Edinburgh.

Indeed the former Tillicoultry PS pupil is well known in Clacks due to his performances at Forefront Stage School productions.

Taylor said: "I hope to continue to develop and to come out of it the best performer I can be with the help of the fabulous staff at The MGA Academy.

"I'm really excited about starting in September and love that I can study at a high level in Scotland.

"In time, I would like to be working, doing a bit of everything, with musical theatre being the biggest.

"The ultimate dream, which is more of a straight acting role, would be to be in Doctor Who, because I'm a very large fan of that show.

"On stage, I'd love to be in Sweeney Todd or Jesus Christ Superstar."

In 2018, The MGA Academy became the first full-time professional training academy in Scotland to be awarded accreditation by CDMT, the UK's quality assurance and membership body for the professional dance, drama and musical theatre industries.

Drew Gowland, co-founder and managing director of The MGA Academy, added: "We're delighted to welcome Taylor onto our Musical Theatre degree course.

"For more than a decade, we have been providing students like Taylor with exceptional training on par with London's leading dance and drama schools.

"We are currently holding auditions for courses starting in September 2019 and have already received more applications than ever before.

"We have had hopefuls from all over the UK and across Europe apply to audition so far and would welcome applications from people from central Scotland with similar aspirations to Taylor."