Theatre workshop with a difference comes to Stowmarket

Daisy-Emma Iverson and Evie Pettingale. Picture: SPINNING WHEEL THEATRE

Daisy-Emma Iverson and Evie Pettingale. Picture: SPINNING WHEEL THEATRE - Credit: Archant

A theatre workshop with a difference is making its way to Stowmarket for the first time this year.

Sidi Welton (Puck) and Oliver Smith (Oberon) in Midsummer Nights Dream. Picture: SPINNING WHEEL THEA

Sidi Welton (Puck) and Oliver Smith (Oberon) in Midsummer Nights Dream. Picture: SPINNING WHEEL THEATRE - Credit: Archant

Spinning Wheel Theatre is bringing its successful youth takeover project, where teenagers and young people can learn a variety of industry skills, to the town after February half-term.

Aimed at 15-25-year-olds, the weekly sessions will be led by the youngsters and culminate in an original theatre performance in the town.

Each week they will be supported by trained professionals from Spinning Wheel Theatre and roles taken on by the youngsters during the project include set design, marketing, budgeting, lighting, sound and props.

Amy Wyllie, artistic director and co-founder of Spinning Wheel Theatre, from Bury St Edmunds, said: “The takeover project is a youth theatre with a difference.

Jordan Finding, Harriet Ashton and Oscar Glenister at Midsummer Nights Dream rehearsals. Picture: S

Jordan Finding, Harriet Ashton and Oscar Glenister at Midsummer Nights Dream rehearsals. Picture: SAMUEL NORRIS - Credit: Archant


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“The participants do everything as well as performing. It is youth-led. They can also get one-to-one advice and support on writing their CVs, creating portfolios and interviews.

“The idea is that anyone can get involved. You don’t have to have any experience in the arts.”

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The takeover project has been running every year in Bury St Edmunds since 2015 and previous shows there include William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Harold Pinter’s A Night Out and an original show called Tangled Tales, which was performed at the International Youth Arts Festival in London in 2017.

Luci Skelton, 18, who took part in the takeover project in Bury St Edmunds in 2017, said: “It’s a really fun experience which has improved my confidence, teamwork, practical making skills and organisation hugely.

“I really enjoy how strongly it makes you feel part of a team and the camaraderie that comes with it as well as learning new skills.”

Some 47 young people have been supported through the takeover projects since they started with 86% of the youngsters either getting places onto arts training courses, drama schools or other forms of training.

“It has been very successful. That is why we want to take it to Stowmarket. It is a tried and tested formula. There isn’t anything like this in Stowmarket. It is unique,” Miss Wyllie added.

The Stowmarket takeover sessions run every Wednesday from 5.30-8.30pm and will take place just after February half-term until the summer.

People need to apply for a place in advance. The course costs £35 per term.

To apply email amy@spinningwheeltheatre.com

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