The arts magazine for teachers

Spring always seems to bring new hope, with plants springing to life after their winter hibernation and this year, perhaps more than most, this new hope seems to be more pertinent to all of us. On my daily dog walk, I have been watching as the bluebells miraculously start to emerge and their scent now fills the air once again… so I know spring is really here! Having endured a challenging year, let us hope that this spring there truly is a new start and life can return to a semblance of ‘normal’.

Whilst students have returned to school and you are managing bubbles, it may yet be a while before school theatre trips can fully resume, but there are an increasing number of online resources and productions to help you ensure your cohort can still enjoy the delights of live performance to enhance their studies and inspire their thoughts.

Perhaps one of the positives to be taken from the past year is how theatre creatives have been devising new formats and online resources for you to embrace these opportunities; such as the multiverse adventure-style gameplay adaptation of Romeo & Juliet from Creation Theatre (page 16), which allows audience members to choose alternative outcomes and interact live with the characters.

Proving that the online world can open up new opportunities, we take a look at the ‘lockdown’ work from Graeae (page 13) and their latest series of online duologue plays, Crips without Constraints 2, pairing a disabled actor with the likes of Harriet Walter.

As an antithesis to the online world, our Big Interview in this issue is with puppeteer Ronnie le Drew, still performing in his 70s, demonstrating that there are many ways to tell a story (page 8).

Theatres are scheduling productions, drama schools conducting their auditions (online)… signs that we are emerging from hibernation and normality WILL resume!

John

Vivid Direction

Vivid Direction  

Matthew Parker is a theatre director. His recent Henry V in the Roman Amphitheatre for Maltings Theatre, St Albans wowed Susan Elkin, herself a Henry V veteran, so she met him to find out more. I fell in love with theatre when I was four years old – and it was for life”, Matthew tells me, […]

Difference through Diversity

Difference through Diversity  

A fierce, uncompromising visionary, revolutionising actor training, Fourth Monkey’s Director of Training, Charleen Qwaye explains to IP how they are evolving 2020 marks a big year for Fourth Monkey. Ten years since the London-based actor training company was founded, it also marks their BA (Hons) Acting degree receiving formal accreditation in partnership with Falmouth University.  This […]

ALRA

ALRA  

Forty-three years since its foundation, ALRA (Academy of Live and Recorded Arts) continues to develop talented performers across many disciplines. Susan Elkin went to find out more. ALRA has come a long way since Miranda Hart and Jimmy Akinbola became its most famous alumnae. For a start, it’s the only drama school in the Federation […]

New Age of Enlightenment

New Age of Enlightenment  

An unusual collaboration between the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Acland Burghley School in London aroused the interest of Susan Elkin. The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (OAE) has a new home. It is now based at Acland Burghley comprehensive school  (ABS) in Camden. Three offices will be adapted for the administration team, […]

Advice for Auditionees

Advice for Auditionees  

Chris Hocking, Principal & Director of the School of Musical Theatre, and Julie Spencer, Director of the School of Acting, at ArtsEd offer advice for auditionees in these unusual circumstances. Due to the current situation around Covid-19, ArtsEd have taken all first-round auditions for BA (Hons) Musical Theatre and Acting courses online, meaning auditionees will […]

Best of Both

Best of Both  

Being one of the smallest drama schools in the country certainly hasn’t held back this rural drama school, nor its esteemed alumni. Susan Elkin is our guide. When George Peck founded The Oxford School of Drama in 1986 he was breaking new ground. An actor/director used to working with students, he wanted to offer fresh, […]

Virtually There

Virtually There  

Bereft of being able to visit galleries in person, Graham Hooper has put together a tour of wonderful online ‘visits’ for you to experience during lockdown.

The School of HighTide

The School of HighTide  

HighTide Theatre Company has announced the first phase of its Inventing the Future programme, a range of initiatives to support the rebuilding of the arts sector in its current recovery phase and made possible by a grant of £78,000 from the Government’s Cultural Recovery Fund. This includes the launch of School of HighTide and two new Higher Education partnerships with London College of Communication at University of the Arts, London and University of East Anglia.

Theatre Review: Des – ITV 3 part miniseries

Theatre Review: Des – ITV 3 part miniseries  

Dennis Nilsen was a Scottish serial killer in North London who died in 2018. Known as “Des”, he murdered at least 15 young men between 1978 and 1983, although he was convicted of only six. His motivation was necrophilia. This is not a story for the faint-hearted. David Tennant captures the dour, Scots impassivity beautifully. […]

Book Review: Return to Roar

Book Review: Return to Roar  

By Jenny McLachlanPublished by Egmont This is a sequel to McLachlan’s earlier Land of Roar and there’s a third title in the pipeline. I read it, though, as a standalone and that works because she sets up the situation very adeptly at the beginning.  Think Peter Pan (we meet the Lost Girls) crossed with Narnia […]