Zoom Youth Theatre with Growtheatre

Paige from Growtheatre

In amongst these uncertain times, one thing is for sure is that we have still been able to fill our Thursday evenings with fun, laughter and adventures with our Youth Theatre! During the month of November, we unfortunately had to put our Junior group on hold until we could return to the wonderful Ecclesall Woods safely! We did however, move our Intermediate and Senior sessions back online whilst we waited for the exciting news to get back outdoors.

We found Zoom to be an amazing tool that has allowed us to connect with our Youth Theatre Members during really difficult times. Each week they turned up raring to dive into their sessions, play fun drama games adapted especially for virtual playing and get stuck into whatever activities we throw their way. It transformed our Thursday evenings by being able to meet and have fun with our groups.

The Intermediates have been looking at the theme of adventures and exploring just how exciting and creative we could make them over a screen! We began looking at the poem ‘The Island of Bum Bum Baloo’ as a stimulus and their imaginations have soared! We focused on building their drama skills in the first half of term, looking at their character development, improvisation, devising and working together. We then worked on building their own adventures and incorporated all our new skills to create something wonderful over zoom.

The Seniors have welcomed a new leader this term and we are really fortunate to have Joe Bunce from Paperfinch Theatre join us to share his wonderful skills and expertise! We have also been really lucky to have Joe assist in our Intermediate group too.

Joe shared

It's been a pleasure to work with the young people at Growtheatre for the Autumn Term. I set sail for adventures with Intermediates - they've become dab hands at inventively whipping up costumes from their wardrobes and emptying toy chests to create elaborate Zoom set designs: rainforests, spaceships, and pirate ships. It's been brilliant to see how the rest of the Growtheatre team can sustain the spontaneity and joy of creation, even when we're apart. Meanwhile, the Seniors have dug their teeth into bending and stretching what theatre can be - from roleplays, to murder mysteries, to online escape rooms. From mathematical gunpowder plots to an underwater choose-your-own-adventure, I've been continually impressed by the groups' ingenuity and creativity - and we've all been building new skills and learning new theatrical styles that we can apply to both digital and in-person work

Whilst our zoom sessions have taken us somewhat on an adventure of our own, we will be forever grateful we had them as an option to fill our Thursdays with fun just like we did before. As we embark on our new journeys from the amazing Ecclesall Woods and Whirlowbrook Hall, we are excited to see where our new sessions will take us. Probably somewhere amazing knowing our 3 wonderful groups.

Written by Paige, Growtheatre