Chosen out of over 1,500 hopefuls, the winners are Kaylee Golding, a DJ and presenter from Birmingham; Joe Hobbs, a stand-up comedian and presenter from Northampton; Ty Logan, an online content creator, writer and actor from London; and Lydia Maddix, a comedy performer and writer from London.
As part of this grassroots scheme, the four, who come without substantial mainstream or terrestrial broadcast experience, will receive real world, hands-on training, tailored to each of them. The training will focus on writing, directing, producing and the story telling process, helping each to really find their niche and learn how to create a connection with E4’s young audience.
On top of this, these exciting new additions to E4’s pool of talent will also receive an industry mentor and be introduced to well-known talent, who’ll provide first-hand advice on how they’ve progressed in their field. The aim of the E4 Academy is to equip the four with the skills to be able to enter and be successful in the media and content industries.
There will also be opportunities for exposure on E4, which could see them involved across digital content, social media, in-vision continuity or starring in new shows over the next 12 months.
E4 has a strong heritage as a launchpad for talent, kicking off the careers of well-known names like Russell Brand, Jimmy Carr, Michaela Coel, Daniel Kaluuya, and Kaya Scodelario.
Karl Warner, Controller of E4 said: “I’m delighted to welcome Lydia, Joe, Kaylee and Ty into the E4 family, and that they’ll be first into the E4 Talent Academy. They all represent something unique, and the support we’ll provide should help skyrocket their careers and inject new talent into the industry. You saw them here first.”
Leah Henry, Producer and the Fully Focused team said: “Fully Focused Productions are really excited to have filtered down over 1,000 applications and travelled across the UK to meet hundreds of amazing young people to finally discover the four winners of the first ever E4 Talent Academy!
“Lydia, Kaylee, Joe and Ty are super-talented young performers with a bright future ahead. We can’t wait to get working with them as we develop their onscreen personalities, produce new content and see where the journey takes us.”
Based in London, Lydia is a comedy performer and writer on the rise. With frequent comparisons to Kate Nash due to her British-pop sound and punny lyrics, she was hand-picked to support Nash at Standon Calling Festival. Lydia has also had her comedy work featured by rapper Lady Leshurr and The Cuban Brothers.
Lydia studied at Canterbury Christ Church University and since then, she has been researching and producing across a range of genres such as factual entertainment, reality, music and promos and now works as a digital producer.
Lydia said: “I feel super lucky to have been chosen for this incredible opportunity! I’ve always loved E4’s output so to now be working with them is by far the best thing to happen this year! I just can’t wait to be a part of their world and to bring my A game to the channel.”
Originally from Northampton and now based in London, Joe started his stand-up comedy career in 2017 and quickly gained critical acclaim for his conversational manner, irreverent charm, and leftfield punchlines. In 2018, he won the Amused Moose Breakthrough Comedian of the Year Award (previously won by Katherine Ryan and Romesh Ranganathan).
Joe’s comedic style is driven by a passion for understanding and uniting people and he speaks openly about his mental health ups and downs, ADHD, masculinity and class.
His goal is to bring his skills to TV, where he’ll be at home presenting and interviewing, using his natural openness and honesty to bring humour and lightness to meaningful conversations.
Joe said: “I can’t believe it, it’s such a thrill to have so much hard work pay off and to get to work with a channel that’s given me so many laughs over the years”.
Fully Focused are an award-winning non-profit production company who use film to challenge perceptions and progress young lives. 100% youth driven, they work with a team of 50 16-25-year-old diverse creatives, many of whom might not otherwise have had the opportunity to work in the industry.