RSC throws open its doors to young people for YPS Week

5 October 2011

10 – 14 October 2011
Stratford-upon-Avon

The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) s running a special week of Young People's Shakespeare (YPS) events in its Stratford-upon-Avon home from 10- 14 October. Each day there will be a performance of YPS The Taming of the Shrew, specially directed and adapted for young people by Tim Crouch in the Swan Theatre, followed by a post show event.

Around 2,000 young people will be in and around the building to see performances and take part in a number of special activities running throughout the week. Many of the schools and students will be experiencing their first taste of theatre and their first experience of seeing Shakespeare live.

Apart from the performances themselves, the other highlights are:

Art installation

Theatre and event designer Lily Arnold has designed a 3D chapel that will sit at the top of the Colonnade (the front of house area which connects the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and the Swan) and features cut out figures of Katharina and Petruchio. Audience members will be invited to write their views on these characters from The Taming of the Shrew both before and after they have seen the show. The installation will grow throughout the week and students from Stratford College and members of the RSC's education team will be working on it daily in the Colonnade.

A Taste of Front of House

Students from Stratford College will work with members of the RSC's front of house teams to meet and greet the young audiences as they arrive at the theatre. They are training with members of the RSC team and will shadow them throughout the week.

Broadcast News

A group of young students will devise a news programme reporting on the RSC activities that were most significant for young audiences from the past 12 months. RSC Governor, and BBC presenter and journalist George Alagiah, will work with the group on Friday 14 October to help them shape their report into a brief opener for the RSC's Annual General Meeting (AGM) which will take place on 14 October. The students will be collecting stories and interviews from staff and YPS audiences throughout the week.

Fighting Words

Fighting Words is a digital playwriting project which aims to inspire students to write a scene between two characters based on the 'sparring' of Katharina and Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew. On each day of YPS week, a short film will be uploaded to the RSC website to guide students on a particular moment and skills in writing the scene. Schools will film their finished scenes and the most interesting entry will be selected to be uploaded to the RSC website. More information on www.rsc.org.uk/education/projects/fighting-words.aspx

Sat 8 October, 1.30pm
Mon 10 October, 11.30am
Tue 11 October, 1.30pm
Wed 12 October, 11am
Thur 13 October, 1.30pm
Fri 14 October, 11am
Sat 15 October, 11am

For further information please contact Nada Zakula in the RSC press office on 01789 412622 or 07831 766086 or nada.zakula@rsc.org.uk

For Midlands enquiries please contact Dean Asker on 01789 412660 or dean.asker@rsc.org.uk

Notes to Editors:

Other events and productions for children and young people taking place in October:

  • The Magician's Daughter

By Michael Rosen
Presented by Little Angel Theatre in association with the Royal Shakespeare Company

4-9 October in the Waterside Space and Swan Room

Suitable for ages 3-6

Inspired by Shakespeare's story of The Tempest, Little Angel Theatre bring their trademark blend of puppetry and song to a captivating story of the adventures of a young girl.

Directed by Peter Glanville, artistic director of Little Angel and set and puppets by Lyndie right.

Schools performances are on 4 and 5 October at 10.30am and 1.30pm, with public performances on 8 October at 1.030am, 1.30pm, and 3.30pm and Sunday 9 October at 10.30am and 1.30pm.

  • I, Malvolio

Written and performed by Tim Crouch

19-23 October in Swan Room

Suitable for ages 12+ or 16+

Performed to much acclaim at this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Tim Crouch's I Malvolio will have schools performances and public performances.

I Malvolio is the story of Twelfth Night told through the eyes of Shakespeare's most pent-up steward,. It is a charged, hilarious and often unsettling rant from a man who was 'notoriously wronged'. It is designed by Graeme Gilmour with Lucy Bradbrige and Emma Wreyford

Schools performances (for 12+) are on 19 and 20 October at 1.30pm. Public performances (for 16+) are on 21 and 23 October at 7.30pm.

  • I, Peaseblossom

Written and performed by Tim Crouch

19-23 October in Swan Room

Suitable for ages 12+ or 16+

Tim Crouch tells the story of A Midsummer Night's Dream as re-lived through the fantastical nightmares of Shakespeare's most neglected fairy. Funny, heart-breaking and ever so slightly crazed, I Peaseblossom is a gloriously riotous dream of a 'dream'.

Schools performances (for 12+) are on 19, 20 and 21 October at 10.30am. Public performances (for 16+) are on 22 and 23 October at 1.30pm.

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