Friday, 22 June 2012

Putting Yourself on the Map

Andrea-Jane Morris, Young Journalist, on Day 2 of Connections at the NT

As a young journalist, myself and a group of others were given an amazing opportunity to work with the National Theatre, via the 'Connections Inside-Out: Young Journalist Project'. Being given high access to rehearsals and interviews with the casts of the evening performances, it was an opportunity to take advantage of!

However, the real privilege the Connections team give, is to national youth theatre companies such as West Lancashire College and Rotherham College and the young playwrights, the chance to have their pieces performed and showcased at the National Theatre (a decision which would be very difficult). A opportunity you would never ignore. There was an international vibe this year, with Samir Yazbek (The Ritual) being a Brazilian writer. 

'Little Foot' was written by Craig Higginson, the story of a group who spend an evening telling stories of the underground South African caves and 'The Ritual', a story of a group of young people who form a secret organisation with a certain set of rules to follow was written by Samir Yazbek, translated by Mark O'Thomas. You saw the sheer talent that oozed from the actors. It was mind-blowing. A definite professional status is in the stars for them. 

Little Foot, West Lancs College. Photo: Simon Annand

Nonetheless, the Connections team give brilliant opportunities to develop as a writer and being able to cover part of the largest, national youth festival in the country? An extremely good place to start, in my opinion. The very core of Connections is to help young people and the fact that after 17 years, they are still as important to the country as theatre itself, shows the lives they change. This experience was truly amazing and being able to immerse myself in the different elements of theatre just made it that much more interesting.

In terms of the two, talented theatre companies, this evening at the National Theatre Connections Festival, officially put them on the youth theatrical map.

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