Talented Youngsters Takeover York Theatre RoyalDate: 17 October 2010
The management team at York Theatre Royal will boldly step aside to allow a team of talented young people to take over the running of the theatre during half term this autumn.
The team who are all aged between 11 and 26 years old will discover the challenges of running a professional theatre first hand, from the day to day practicalities to budgeting, programming and PR. The results of their hard work will culminate in a festival of theatrical events aptly titled the Takeover Festival.
‘All the senior management roles here at the theatre are being taken over by the festival team; producer, artistic directors, associate directors, production manger and general manager as well as head of communications. The way the theatre’s usually run, Takeover will be doing that on a mini level for three weeks’ says festival producer Polly Ingham.
Thousands of young people participated in the first festival of this type at the theatre in 2009. This year’s festival is expected to be even bigger and better with an exciting programme of performances and workshops extending into the theatre foyer and out into the city of York beyond.
The Takeover team’s artistic directors Rhiannon Jackson and Tom Bellerby have taken responsibility for steering the creative vision of the festival and have prioritised ‘exciting new work that wouldn’t usually be seen in York Theatre Royal.’
Bellerby tells us that the team’s aim was to achieve an ‘eclectic mix, a diverse selection ranging from performance poetry, dance, comedy and site specific theatre. We’re trying to offer audiences something different to what they’d usually expect to give a unique experience.’
The festival team have secured bookings with a variety of established companies including the internationally renowned Phoenix Dance Theatre. Trestle, known for their brand of mask theatre, will be performing unmasked to showcase their physical, visual storytelling skills in the political thriller Burn My Heart and Imitating the Dog will blur the boundaries between film and theatre when they present Hotel Methuselah.
Promoting and developing new talent has also been a priority for the festival and local up and coming performers can be seen in Elsewhere, a site specific theatre piece devised by award winning resident theatre company Belt Up, in collaboration with York Theatre Royal’s Young Actors Company. A nationwide search for emerging artists, invited to pitch for their first professional commission, concludes in Hatch, a three day event featuring the three successful theatre companies who were each awarded a slot at the festival.
The festival runs for a week from 25th October until 30th October and again for a fortnight in March 2011 (March programme to be announced).
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