press release
Published: 15 March 2023

An Irish Goodbye sparks Oscars joy for University of Surrey alumni

Two University of Surrey alumni are celebrating global success after triumphing at this year’s Oscars. 

Guildford School of Acting alumni Tom Berkeley and Ross White, who graduated from the BA Acting course in 2017, won the 2023 Best Short Film (Live Action) Oscar award for writing and directing ‘An Irish Goodbye’. 

Berkeley and White’s success comes just a few weeks after they also won the BAFTA award for Best British Short Film. 

Head of the Guildford School of Acting at the University of Surrey, Dr Catherine McNamara said: 

“We couldn't be prouder of Tom and Ross for their Oscar and BAFTA wins. To see graduates creating rich and interesting work and being recognised by their peers and leaders in the creative industries is truly fantastic. We celebrate their success, and we look forward to their next projects.” 

An Irish Goodbye is a 23-minute black comedy, set on a rural farm, and tells the story of two estranged brothers who come together after their mother’s death. 

The pair took to the stage at Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday 12 March together with actor James Martin, who became the first person with Down's syndrome to win an Academy Award – an achievement made all the special as it occurred on his 31st birthday. 

Speaking to the BBC afterwards, Ross White said 

"To be on that stage in front of all of our cinematic heroes - it was a special moment." 

You can watch An Irish Goodbye on BBC iPlayer



Note to editors:  

  • Dr Catherine McNamara is available for interview upon request       

  • Contact the University of Surrey press office:   

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