Blog: Director’s Decisions

First read-through of the scripts with the Young Playwrights, actors and director.

I am delighted to say that we now have three brand new short plays that will be performed in our Out Of The Archive series in the Minerva Theatre in October. The three pieces have been inspired and informed by the work of the Youth Theatre and:

– A 1960s article regarding what you should and should not wear to CFT (see below)

– Press cuttings, reviews and production notes relating to the 1970s production of Chekov’s The Seagull

– Letters written to the young cast of the 1986 production of Jane Eyre

The result is a selection of plays containing very human relationships and feelings that we can all relate to – love, inferiority, and fear – all explored using humour and truth.

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Blog: Chichester Festival Youth Theatre – inspired by the Archive

Archive document about the Festival Theatre Cricket Match which has inspired Kates Youth Theatre groups.
Archive document about the Festival Theatre Cricket Match which has inspired Kates Youth Theatre groups.

As a Youth Theatre Leader at Chichester Festival Youth Theatre, my challenge this term is to encourage a group of 14 and 15 year olds to create some interesting pieces of theatre using historical stimuli – not as easy as it sounds, but certainly a lot of fun!

I run sessions for two Year 10 groups and have chosen two stimuli from the archives: correspondence regarding a charity cricket match between Chichester Festival Theatre and the RSC in 1986 and letters containing information for young people participating in a professional production of Jane Eyre in the same year.

I began by thinking of exercises that would allow Youth Theatre members to create performances based on this particular material. Cricket is an especially difficult topic with which to inspire teenage girls (and some boys). Introductory sessions included creating freeze frames to represent different stages of a cricket match, flowing between each one and moving to the sounds of Soul Limbo – a classic cricket theme. Following this, the freeze frames were combined to create whole group images of a cricket match thinking predominantly about clear body positioning and facial expressions.

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