Connecting Communities with the Creative Industries

September 22nd, 2022

Throughout 2022 Anna McNamara (Guildford School of Acting) has undertaken a nationwide project funded by the Higher Education Innovation Fund at the University of Surrey. This nationwide inclusion project has been designed to support school children and teachers, particularly those from backgrounds currently underrepresented in the creative industries training sector, connecting local communities with their theatres, both of which have been negatively impacted through the pandemic. Collaborating with regional theatres in Londonderry, Swindon, Exeter, Battersea, Manchester, Liverpool and Guildford the project delivered fully funded outreach workshops with the intention of raising the aspirations of young people to access arts in Higher Education.

The workshops, led by trained GSA alumni, covered several different theatrical disciplines such as puppetry, set design, lighting, sound, devising and site-specific performance. Over 100 young people and their teachers participated and will be gifted fully funded tickets and travel subsidy to the West End production of The Life of Pi.

Furthermore, a series of films are being created to provide schools with direct information and access on what to expect and how to access and prepare for entry to vocational training in the professional creative industries, in partnership with the Federation of Drama Schools (FDS).

The project is then progressing in 2023 to deliver focussed free to access workshops for students from SEND backgrounds in the new year in direct partnership with the Mousetrap Foundation, raising aspirations of young people living with SEND to access a career in the creative industries.

The project advocates for the connection of young people and their schools with the charity Get Into Theatre in all of these endeavours.

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