If you’re interested in drama, the best thing you can do is join a youth or amateur theatre company. There are many groups throughout the North West which you can apply to join. These organisations can help students at all levels of their development, nurturing their skills and introducing them to all the arts have to offer. For those who then want to go on to study further, they can offer an invaluable insight into the working practices of a professional performer or stage manager and are one of the best ways to prepare for auditions at drama school and university.
Youth and Amateur
Maybe without realising it, in youth theatre, you’re developing skills that you can apply anywhere. These include confidence, creativity and imagination, problem solving, discipline, generosity, time management, organisation and communication, relating to people totally different to you, leadership… that’s before you get to the technical or performance experience.
You can learn a lot about yourself in a theatre company. Are you good at listening to others? Does being the brains behind a technical effect thrill you? Are you a brilliant diplomat, or willing to dedicate hours to getting something just right? Under what circumstances are you most creative? This knowledge is precious. It will help you find a job that’s right for you, and understand what makes you tick.
Theatre also offers a space where you can get out of yourself and explore ideas without boundaries. Nothing is too dangerous or controversial that drama can’t help us understand it. Theatre needs young voices and ideas to keep it alive. And if you are thinking of going to drama school, it’s useful to build up experience in youth and amateur theatre before you audition.
If you’d like to join a youth or amateur theatre company, and have specific access needs, telephone the organisation to discuss your requirements. You could make a unique contribution to their drama work, and they’re legally obliged to make any necessary changes to help you get involved.
Many major producing theatres run excellent youth companies, like the Birmingham Rep, the Lyric, Hammersmith or Oldham Rep. Check out the website. You will find some youth and amateur groups listed here.
More information about youth in theatre can be found from www.dramauk.co.uk/youth_amateur