Seven of Scotland’s brightest young theatre-makers have been chosen to work with some of the country’s top theatre practitioners as part of a twelve-month Young Arts Leaders programme. The programme encourages a new generation of arts leaders and producers within their own communities.
Following interviews in January 2015, the chosen seven recently came together at the first of three Leadership Skills weekend workshops. Here they also met some of the theatre professionals who will mentor them over the twelve months of the programme. Each participant will develop leadership and entrepreneurial skills to allow them to create and produce their own theatre-based projects in their own communities, where it is needed most.
On completion of the twelve-month course, the Young Leaders gain a Gold Arts Award with units in personal arts development and arts project leadership.
Funding for the Young Arts Leaders programme comes from Creative Scotland’s CashBack for Creativity initiative, part of the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities redistribution of the proceeds of crime.
Young Arts Leaders and Mentors 2015
Colleen graduated in 2013 with a Drama and Performance degree from Queen Margaret University. Since then, she has worked as a freelance drama facilitator, from pre-school children to young adults. She has also worked with young people with a range of disabilities at a special needs school in Glasgow. Colleen is a passionate performer, enjoying acting and devising and writing new material. She has appeared in shows at the Edinburgh and Stockholm Fringe Festivals, and recently performed at Arches Live.
Philippa graduated From RSAMD (now RCS) in 2004 with a BA (Hons) Contemporary Theatre Practice Philippa has developed herself as a Glasgow based freelance drama artist, working in a variety of educational and community contexts. She has continued to work alongside a cross-section of British theatre companies, directors and educational establishments. These include, Visible Fictions, RCS, Glasgow Academy of Musical Theatre Arts, Starfish Films, Creative Identities Scotland, Y Dance and Katherine Morley amongst others.
Glasgow-born Stephanie already has an HND in Acting and Performance and is now studying for a BSc in Applied Psychology. She would eventually like to study Drama and Movement Therapy. She co-founded Bold Cow Productions in 2013 and has so far produced, directed and performed two plays. She enjoys the opportunity for cross over between disciplines that creating theatre allows.
Emma trained at RSAMD graduating with BA Honours in Dramatic Studies in 2000. Since then she has been a drama worker, facilitator and director with various organisations and theatre companies including 7:84, Birds of Paradise, Citizens Theatre, TAG, Tron Theatre, Toonspeak Young People’s Theatre, East Glasgow Youth Theatre, Solar Bear, Platform, Fablevision, Tricky Hat, Mull Theatre, Giant Productions and Scottish Opera. She has worked with a wide range of individuals with diverse needs including adults and young people with physical and mental disabilities, those with mental health issues, looked after and accommodated young people, the elderly and the homeless.
Currently studying NQ Events at college in Fife, Joshua hopes to continue his studies with Technical Theatre, specialising in Stage Management. His preferred discipline is technical theatre because he feels there is nothing in his locality where young people are able to learn it. Joshua appeared in the Youth Music Theatre Scotland (YMTS) production of Billy Elliot.
Arran Howie (Tortoise in a Nutshell)
Arran is one of the founding members of award-winning visual theatre company Tortoise in a Nutshell, created in 2009 with the aim of making theatre to inspire and excite its audiences. As well as performing tours both nationally and internationally she has led educational workshops through the company in schools and the local community. Since graduating with a degree in drama and theatre arts, specialising in community theatre, Arran has worked as a freelance workshop facilitator for all ages across Scotland.
Christopher has experience of directing but is primarily drawn to writing. For him, writing holds the potential to create something which will engage and inspire an audience and bring them together. For his most recent project, Christopher helped produce, write and direct a two-week run of The Constant Soldier at the 2014 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. He wrote the script under the tutelage of David Cosgrove as part of Scottish Youth Theatre’s Young Writers course.
Johnny McKnight (Random Accomplice)
Johnny has worked across the world – from New York to New Lanark as a writer, director, educator and performer. He is Co-Artistic Director of Random Accomplice Theatre Company and is passionate about the power of a nice writing pen.
Fraser has extensive performing experience, including several leading roles in Youth Music Theatre Scotland. His main passion is writing and directing for educational theatre. He co-wrote and directed Caught in the Net, an educational piece about internet safety, which won the UK CyberSmart Award. Fraser has also run school drama workshops in Forth Valley and Fife, and enjoyed success at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2013.
Paul Gorman (Hidden Giants)
Paul has over 15 years of experience of working in the cultural sector as a freelance artist, lecturer, project manager, adventurer and creative director. His passion is to instigate innovative projects that work in partnership with imaginative artists and inspirational communities.
Kirsty has worked and volunteered with youth theatre groups for around three years. She studied Acting and Performance at Dundee College where she developed a love for directing and creating challenging contemporary theatre.
Gavin Crichton (Active Inquiry)
Gavin is a theatre director, workshop leader and Artistic Director of ACTive INquiry. He trained with Augusto Boal and is an experienced Theatre of the Oppressed “Joker”. He has over 12 years’ experience creating work in various community settings using theatre as a way to explore problems and build dialogue and action.
Rosie is currently in fifth year at high school. She dances with Manor School of Ballet and performs in its productions. Rosie has gained 200 hours of experience with the Saltire Awards through her volunteering. Her love of dance encouraged her to apply for the Young Arts Leaders course and she relishes the challenge of becoming a leader.
Mentor: Emma Jayne Park (Cultured Mongrel Dance)
Emma Jayne Park is a dancer and theatre makes based in Scotland. Having founded Cultured Mongrel Dance Theatre as an umbrella for her practice her ethos uses the innate values of hip hop culture to explore new territories in dance theatre and social innovation.
Oct – Dec 2014
Jan – Mar 2015
Apr – Jun 2015