I was an incredibly shy child. In an endeavour to develop my confidence, my mother decided to enlist the help of a professional speech and drama teacher.
It is a decision that I am eternally grateful to her for.
It changed my life.
Through the study of speech and drama, I was given the skills necessary to overcome my shyness, manage my nerves and communicate effectively in any given situation.
As a student I won several Northern Ireland titles in Public Speaking. I also secured a lead role with the coveted Ulster Youth Theatre and their production of Good Night Strabane in 1992.
I went on to represent Northern Ireland in Brussels after winning the Northern Ireland Finals of The Soroptomist Public Speaking Competition (a competition that I was invited back to adjudicate many years later.)
After graduating from University I began my professional career in London working with several multi national organisations.
These include Marks & Spencer PLC, The Wegner Media Group and BBC Worldwide.
In 2002 I relocated back home to Northern Ireland to establish The Shelley Lowry School of Speech and Drama and the Lowry Theatre Group.
Speech and Drama provides children and young people with the skills that are essential to succeed in life. I can confidently say that I speak from experience.
A great number of my students have gone on to enjoy professional success within the creative and media industries.
However, the skills acquired through studying Speech & Drama classes have also given my other students a competitive edge in their many other chosen professions.
I deliver drama workshops in primary schools that are tailored to the Northern Ireland curriculum.
I work with community groups using theatre in education as a tool to deal with issues that impact young people.
I have delivered drama workshops for adults with learning difficulties and mental health issues.