I started in late September and since then I’ve had the privilege of working on so many wonderful projects with so many fantastic groups of people. I currently work with all our Youth Theatre groups, our Inclusion groups and local schools that are part of our Associate Schools Programme. It’s a very busy programme but you know what they say, it’s never dull in ‘Ull! Here’s more about what I do, the projects we’ve been working on and my first two months as a theatre intern!
Our Youth Theatre groups are aged 8-21. With the five out of eight groups I currently attend, they have just chosen their shows for the Youth Theatre Festival, three of which will be taking place in April. I am assistant directing on Remote, This Changes Everything and The Chrysalids and assisting on Defiance, a combination cast of our two 16-21 groups, due to take place in March in a secret location. (Cue the oooooooh’s) All the Youth Theatre groups are full of different characters and each session is so different from the last. One thing that is consistent every week though, is the energy and chatter that these young people bring to the table. Every session I set myself a challenge of learning at least one more person’s name than the week before. Considering there are approximately one hundred of them all together, I’m getting there, slowly but surely! One of the exciting projects I was fortunate enough to partake in during October, was a weeklong trip to York and Wensleydale, where our Hull group met other youth groups from Italy, Spain, and Portugal to create a piece of theatre. It was such a wonderful experience! You can read more on that week here.
Outside of the Youth Theatre, I also work with two groups in our Inclusion programme on a Tuesday and Wednesday. These groups have a range of varying abilities from mild to severe learning and physical disabilities. During my first session with these groups, I was aware that I was a little nervous, I began to overthink the language that I was using, was I being politically correct? What if I said something and offended someone? What if I asked them to do something that they weren’t physically able to do? After five minutes and a lot of hugs and questions later, they accepted me as part of the group and soon after, we were laughing, joking, and sharing stories from the week. These groups have soon become one of the highlights of my week, even if one of the girls still calls me by a different name every session. ‘Good morning Sharon/Shelly/Sandra/Samantha/Sophie!’ I quite like having a new identity every week, maybe I should bring it into the office? That would certainly confuse people in my emails! I thoroughly look forward to seeing what she will invent for me week after next, it’s now part of my weekly routine. (What am I going to do with only one name when the term ends?!)
Our Associate Schools Programme includes nine schools in the Hull area, all looking for new, exciting ways to teach Shakespeare in the classroom as part of their curriculum. As part of this exciting venture, I am primarily the admin/organisation queen, although I do have to work with Finlay McGuigan, our Engagement and Learning Facilitator on a daily basis! We recently had an INSET day and it was so much fun. A group of fully grown adults chasing each other around the theatre at St Mary’s College, screaming Shakespeare had me near tears. We’ve received lots of lovely feedback on that first session, so I’m excited to see where next year takes us.
Well, that’s an update about me and what I’ve been up to in the last two months. I’m hoping to continue blogging about my experience and the sessions here at Hull Truck Theatre, so if you’re ever around the building, then please call for Sarah.
Or Sharon. Or Shelly. Or Sandra. Or Samantha. Or Sophie.