Charles Sammut started training as an actor at the Manoel Theatre Academy of Dramatic Arts. After graduating from the course, he took on several main and secondary parts in various theatre productions both locally and abroad, including Mela Hawn Xi Manikomju?, Children of a Lesser God, Blood Wedding, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Ħitan, Cosi, King Lear, The Elephant Man, Inbid ta’ Kuljum, It-Tfal Jiġu bil-Vapuri and Pupu Fil-Baħar, to mention a few.
Alongside his academic pursuits in Theatre Studies at the University of Malta, the University of British Columbia and the University of Kent, he’s also attended several acting workshops and courses with the Globe Theatre in London and the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-Upon-Avon. He’s also a founding member of KAST – a local theatre company established to adapt literary works in Maltese for the stage.
Charles has taught drama classes at various local theatre schools and has also led many theatre workshops on an international scale. He’s directed and led several students in theatre productions both locally and abroad, and he’s also engaged in television productions such as Anġli, Tgħanniqa, Xhud li Ma Deherx, Salib it-Toroq, It-Tfal, Delitti f’Malta, Andrew & Sue, and prominent film credits include Agora.
Date of Birth: 14th July, 1968
Main occupation: Lecturer of English
Media-related occupation: Actor
Image: Charles in ‘Mela Hawn Xi Manikomju?’ drama
If any of my readers were interested in trying to break into acting, what would you recommend them to start with?
First of all, make sure you have a passion for acting. It’s a demanding profession – yes, a professional attitude is a must even if acting is only a part-time activity here – and it involves long hours and loads of patience. You can be dead tired and depressed, but still have to give your best beaming smile and appear full of energy when filming or rehearsing at 11pm at night after a day’s work.
Research and read theatre history, find good theatre classes and workshops both here and beyond our shores, and while you’re at it, watch loads of theatre while you’re away. Always be open to learn and be fully committed to the long gruelling hours involved. Theatre and TV work in Malta is paid abysmally, so you won’t be doing it for the money, but for the sheer love of this art. I can assure you that people recognising you in the street will grow old very quickly, and unless you really want to do this work for the inner satisfaction that it gives, then don’t do it at all.
Image: Charles in ‘Agora’ movie
What do you like doing when on holiday?
I love visiting places of historical and creative interest. I go to museums, exhibitions and theatre productions. I love sampling new food. I especially like going to places where I can find some peace and serenity among natural beauty.
Do you normally get rattled when you have a lot to do in a short amount of time?
I work well under pressure. In fact, I work better against a deadline. I tend to procrastinate if I have too much time to finish a project.
Image: Charles with Viviene Meli and Anna Bassilly from the teleseries ‘It-Tfal’
Do you have good skills in the kitchen?
Yes I do. I love cooking. I used to cook a lot more, but I now have too many projects to find time for it.
Do you think that something’s bound to be better if it’s more expensive?
No, not always. Sometimes, you’re paying just for the brand name or label. But then I don’t do cheap, either.