This 25-year-old from Madrid has lived in the town of Beaconsfield for two months, a small place, somewhat removed from London’s hectic daily rhythm.
“I live in Wilton Park, very close to the National Film and Television School, where I spent three months studying for a masters, specialising in film and television sound”, explains Juan, who decided to come to the English capital after thoroughly analysing a variety of educational offers from all over Europe.
Language can act as a barrier against employment and cultural life for those recently arrived in London, but in this case, Juan was sure that his level of English was sufficient. “The truth is that I’ve always been interested in English, and also, because of my profession, I have always worked in international circles,” he says.
He is a clear example of the many students who have decided to expand his education, giving him a much broader qualification. In fact, it confirms the significant difference where education is concerned, when the English system is compared with that of Spain.
“I would bring lots of attention to the fact that in London the universities, in some form or another, connect you with the industry and introduce you in a more direct manner to the professional world,” he explains.
Juan studied for three years at the Madrid Schools of Cinema and Television (ECAM) and in 2010, began to work freelance for different producers.
But the crisis is affecting many in the audiovisual sector and, according to his experiences, in Spain “the producers are paying you with a three month delay and, in addition, the offer of work is very limited and makes it impossible to make a decent wage to live on for the whole month.”
This same reality is shared by millions of Spaniards, many of whom think that the situation isn’t going to change in the short term and see in emigration a solution to their problems.
“I think that it’s a feeling shared by a lot of people. No one leaves their country lightly, but if there aren’t any more possibilities to work, you’re left with no alternative but to pack up and abandon ship,” he warns.
Juan ends his interview by giving advice to all those who are still deciding to leave their country or not, and choose London. “What made me excited about coming to London was the knowing and having knowledge of lots of people who had been in my situation and that things hadn’t gone wrong for them.
It’s not just the opportunities, you can also learn a very important language, like English is. I think it also gives you a certain ‘status’ to have been working here.”
(Translated by Daniela Fetta)