MEET THE FRONT OF HOUSE TEAM
All good performances need everyone to play their part and here at AKT it’s no different. While we have our Cast of loyal customers we also have our customer service team, who we loving call our FRONT OF HOUSE TEAM, to help keep everything running smoothly.
Our Front of House team are made up of actors and dancers who are on hand to help with any issues that come up. Why use performers? With roots in theatre we know how important it is to have a “side hustle”, so we wanted to help actors act by letting them AKT. Not to mention people in the arts are passionate, charming and thrive in a variety of environments.
We sat down with our Front of House team to get to know them a little better and learn why they love performing (as well as being part of the AKT team!)
Introducing: Aaron Rahn, Katharine Moraz, Syndie Hocknell and Matthew Hawksley.
HOW DID YOU MEET ED AND ANDY?
Katharine: Andy and I go WAY back. We were in the same class at London drama school, Mountview. Ed and I met as performers in a production of Hairspray. I was playing Tracey Turnblad and Ed, Corny Collins.
Aaron: I actually never met Ed or Andy before I started working for AKT. However, from also being in the theatrical world, I went to watch a friend of mine in West Side Story and Andy was playing Tony! The first time I met Ed was in a nightclub in London. We work hard, but we enjoy a party!
Matt: Same! We met mutual friends in the world of performing. I’d seen Ed on the dance audition circuit about 10 years ago.
Sydnie: I was on tour with one of Andy's friends last year where I was actually working in a similar job while in the dressing room at the theatre. When that company closed I reached out to Andy and have been continuing to answer emails from the dressing room ever since!
TELL US ABOUT HOW YOU GOT INTO THE ARTS?
Aaron: I was in secondary school and auditioned for the pantomime at Princess Theatre, Torquay. Cut to me, trying to learn the routine which was being taught so fast, running off the stage and calling my mum to pick me up! After that, I decided I wanted to take dance classes 1-2 times a week, which turned into every evening and weekends around school. And it's now my career!
Matt: I fancied a girl in the dance department circa 2008, joined the troupe and it was a snowball ball effect.
Katharine: Did you get the girl?!
Matt: Wouldn’t you like to know!
Sydnie: I've always performed to some scale growing up, am-dram or local orchestras etc, so headed off to drama school after sixth form and have been lucky enough to have been performing professionally ever since.
HOW'S YOUR DAY-TO-DAY LIFE LOOKING?
Sydnie: My day kickstarts with a coffee and the gym before I get stuck in to some AKT emails. Then I usually have some time to myself before heading in to the theatre where I finish off the inbox in the dressing room before performing for the evening!
Matt: An Actor’s life: Bit of AKT bit of ACTing bit of NOThing!
Aaron: Not for me! I’m busy, busy and BUSY. On top of working for AKT and being a performer I’m also a spin instructor at Boom Cycle. I then also have my little french bulldog, Baxter! He’s the cutest but certainly keeps me on my toes too.
Katharine: We love Baxter, especially when he joins us for team days! At AKT I'm also helping us work towards BCorp status which I'm really passionate about. We are working to reduce our carbon emissions and finding ways to support our team. It's really fulfilling.
HOW DO YOU NAVIGATE WORKING FOR AKT WHILST STILL PERFORMING?
Sydnie: It can definitely be a “juggle AKT” at times! During rehearsals can be tricky but once the show is open and you're settled into a routine, they actually work great together!
In my last job, I was a swing, which means you can be thrown on for any role at a moment’s notice. Thankfully there's always someone to help you out if you suddenly have to get a wig on and jump on stage!
Matt: Yes, it’s flexible and surprisingly fun, especially when there's a great team around you!
Katharine: I joined the team during the pandemic when theatres had closed down. It felt like a natural fit as I'd watched Ed and Andy grow AKT from the beginning. I even invested in the very first crowd funder. Once I started doing customer service for them I never looked back.
Aaron: I’ve always dabbled in and out of corporate work throughout my career between jobs. You previously would have found me giving you Elle Woods as a Law Firm receptionist! Performers need jobs that are flexible but if you show that you’re hardworking and go the extra mile, then employers are really understanding.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT WORKING FOR AKT?
Sydnie: I love the story of the company! And it's amazing to work alongside like-minded and passionate people even if you have an alternate career running at the same time - especially when the brand is making a genuine difference to people’s lives and the beauty industry.
Aaron: Everyone’s work ethic and energy is great. If there is a problem we all find a way to resolve it, rather than pass it on to someone else to deal with and it gets forgotten. Everyone bounces off each other and knows how to have a laugh while still getting work done.
Katharine: I agree. The team is divine and we have so many brilliant women to collaborate with.
WHERE CAN WE SEE PERFORM?
Matt: Currently about 15 seconds shouting and swearing in The Covenant, now screening on Amazon Prime.
Katharine: I don't do much of it any more. You can still listen to my EP ‘Waltzes for Humans’ that I made in my bedroom in lockdown on Spotify though!
Aaron: At the moment I’m not in a show, but who knows what the year has in store for me.
Sydnie: I have just finished in Bonnie & Clyde at The Garrick Theatre, and soon to be heading on tour.
AND FINALLY... WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE SCENT?
Katharine: I can't use it without The Assistant - getting every drop of that formula out gives me a specific kind of joy!
Aaron: This is hard as I switch them up all the time but I’d have to go with SC.02 After Thunder.
Katharine: Same - I like to change it up regularly but I definitely have a bias towards SC.04 Halcyon Summers.
Sydnie: SC.04 for sure! Summery, subtle, light and fresh!
And now you know our Front of House Team a little better. While we hope you don’t encounter any issues using AKT, if you do need to contact our Front of House team at least you know who you’ll be speaking to and maybe you’ll spot one of them on stage very soon!