The arts magazine for teachers

As London sees the opening of the new Bridge Theatre – a new 900-seat venue promoting new play writing – and West End audiences on the increase (the Harry Potter effect?), generating in the region of £100 million in VAT receipts for the Treasury last year, surely someone in Westminster (whoever is in control come June) will realise the importance of the creative industries to our economy? This will only be maintained if we invest in the future generators of this revenue – the students who will become actors, dancers, stage managers, writers and directors, but who will be ‘lost’ if the teaching of creative arts in schools continues to be marginalised. The performing and visual arts contribute hugely to society and the economy, so please keep inspiring your students and guiding them on their creative journeys.

In this issue, our Big Interview is with artistic director Vicky Featherstone, champion of new writing at the Royal Court theatre, and we preview this year’s CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway shortlisted entries, where your school can still get involved in the shadowing scheme. As your older students are planning their next move, we highlight the opportunities offered by studying at The Lir in Dublin and of the varied performing arts courses on offer during the summer months, for both young and experienced performers.

We look at the brilliant work of the BalletBoyz company, promoting dance for all, and drop in on Royal Central as they join the stampede south of the river to a new studio space. In our latest feature with Digital Theatre Plus, we look at some of the diverse resources available to support the teaching of physical theatre and in this month’s exhibition review, Graham Hooper examines the relationship between art and the political landscape. As we head towards (yet another) election, one wonders how art may reflect the turbulent political landscape we currently find ourselves in?

And a quote for this month: “I have devoted my life to uncertainty. Certainty is the death of wisdom, thought, creativity.” Shekhar Kapur (actor)

THE INBOX – APRIL 2017

THE INBOX –   APRIL   2017  

NYT CPD & Summer Season National Youth Theatre’s latest Teacher CPD Event will take place on Thursday 1 June when the NYT will be opening up their rehearsal room to educators, giving them the opportunity to watch an open rehearsal of Dennis Kelly’s DNA in advance of its limited run at the home of National [...]

THE BIG INTERVIEW: Vicky Featherstone

THE BIG INTERVIEW: Vicky Featherstone  

As champions of new writing, the Royal Court plays a vital role in the link between education and the theatre. Here their artistic director, Vicky Featherstone, chats to Susan Elkin Vicky Featherstone’s middle name might just as well be “new writing”. It has characterised everything this dynamic woman, currently artistic director at the Royal Court, [...]

CILIP Awards Shortlists Announced

CILIP Awards  Shortlists Announced  

This year’s CILIP Awards are in full swing, with opportunities for your students to influence the outcome. Susan Elkin sets the scene Have you read One by Sarah Crossan? It’s a first person narrative by a teenage conjoined twin facing separation from her other half. It’s written in blank verse and I’m pretty sure you [...]

Learning at The Lir

Learning at The Lir  

Small class sizes and reduced tuition fees are just two of the many benefits from opting to study at The Lir in Dublin. Susan Elkin delves deeper There’s a flourishing theatre industry in Dublin – The Abbey, The Gate, the Gaiety and much more. Ireland has produced many acclaimed playwrights too from Shaw, Wilde and [...]

The Billy Effect

The Billy Effect  

The BalletBoyz dance company continues to promote new dance work and opportunities for male dancers. Susan Elkin takes us for a spin Billy Elliot has a lot to be thanked for. Rarely can a fictional boy have affected so many lives and freed up so many creative, talented and/or enthusiastic children – along with those [...]

Summer Schools

Summer Schools  

Susan Elkin guides us through some of the options available to both the young and experienced performers during the summer months How do you advise that very enthusiastic student in your drama class who simply can’t get enough? She or he wants to go to drama school. Parents are anxious. The answer could be to [...]

Teaching physical theatre in the classroom by Alesha Tatum-Howe

Teaching physical theatre in the classroom by Alesha Tatum-Howe  

In our most recent installment from Digital Theatre+, leading education platform for English and the Performing Arts, we asked Alesha Tatum-Howe, Chair of the Fine Arts Department at Wakeland High School in Texas, to take us through her ideal playlist on DT+. The result is an indispensable guide for drama teachers looking for resources to [...]

American Dream

American Dream  

Graham Hooper examines the relationship between political events and art, as reflected in the current exhibition at the British Museum. The centenary of the Russian Revolution is too good an opportunity to miss for art galleries, and rightly so; the impact in design, painting and sculpture, even architecture, is still felt today. That this year, [...]

South Central

South Central  

Southwark, on the south side of the Thames in London, has attracted another leading arts organisation, with the RCSSD’s recently opened Bankside studio spaces. Susan Elkin went to investigate The world of theatre and education seems to be enjoying a spate of drama school moving, or diversifying, into south London. In our last issue we [...]

THEATRE Review: Adam & Eve… and Steve – Flying Entertainment and AES – King’s Head Theatre

THEATRE Review: Adam & Eve… and Steve – Flying Entertainment and AES – King’s Head Theatre  

 Can we love two people equally? Is a gay relationship – which won’t generally populate the world – natural or acceptable? This frisky, oddly old fashioned show – which wears its seriousness lightly – did very well at the Edinburgh Fringe last year and it’s easy to see why. A five hander, it wittily explores [...]