Last weekend I was lucky enough to be in the audience at one of the venues where The National Theatre’s Connections Festival was taking place. The Connections Festival is the nation’s leading theatre festival for young actors. The National Theatre commissions new plays to be written and drama groups all over the country get to do their thing in well -known theatres. The grand prize is to perform at The National Theatre in London.
The group my son is involved with were all very excited about performing. The principle of the school is an inspiring and charismatic young woman who truly gets the best out of them. She was due to have her first baby but the baby wasn’t due until a couple of weeks after the performance. All was well and truly organised, they had rehearsed until they dropped and they were ready to break a leg. It is only on television in sitcoms that people go into labour at the crucial moment – actually that is not true. The principle went into labour on the day of the show. The show was a musical with a huge cast, it could have all fallen to pieces. This comes to my point about teens – they carried on and sang and acted their hearts out. I thought my heart would burst with pride, not only for my son but for every kid in that performance. To say they blew me away would be an understatement.
The next play was about to begin. The actors were on the stage – some were lying down flat on their stomachs, others were crouched up like snails. The lights went on and we waited. The lights went off and we thought it was for dramatic effect. After sitting for a long time whilst the lights went on and off, I was beginning to think that it was one of those pieces which is truly out of the box. However, the stage manager came and announced that there was something wrong with the lighting and they were working on it. During this time, the actors, all in their teens, had to stay in those awful positions and not move. We waited and waited and the audience started shuffling their bottoms in their seats but the teenagers stayed as still as if they were made of marble. I really was impressed because their nerves must have been getting to them with a packed theatre all looking on. Eventually, the lights were sorted and they just got on with performing, no fuss, nothing. Well let’s face it folks – the show must go on!
- How Drama Classes Give Teenagers Work Experience. (loonyliterature.com)
- Local Notables Performing Oscar Wilde For Plays & Players Anniversary (philebrity.com)
- 10 Reasons to Love Stratford Festival (artspaceblog.net)
- Time to give props to theatre props (guardian.co.uk)
- Theatre Coventry: Theatre: Festival fun at Stratford for Shakespeare’s birthday (coventrytelegraph.net)
- Talented Theater Students Need Help To Make It International Competition (miami.cbslocal.com)
- The Raucous, Riotous, Georgian Stage (georgianjunkie.wordpress.com)
- Final Curtain closes on 39 year old children’s theatre. (ktbs.com)