Pathways Partners: National Youth Arts Trust

LAMDA believes that the arts, and the best quality training, should be accessible to everyone and seeks to engage the largest number of people from the widest range of backgrounds. People who think the arts aren’t accessible won’t come to us; it’s our responsibility to reach out to them. 

LAMDA is using its expertise, resources and position within the performing arts to establish Pathways – a programme that enables young people from underrepresented groups to take their next steps into engagement, training or employment in the creative industries. To reach these groups, we are partnering with arts organisations in London and across the UK that have strong links to diverse young people in their area.

National Youth Arts Trust or NYAT are a charity that “provide bursaries for music lessons, dance classes and drama school (recall) audition and tuition fees to those who cannot afford to fund themselves, and run youth theatre projects in areas where there is little or no such provision” .

NYAT Workshop

In response to the lack of arts resources in the regions, NYAT have set up two youth theatres; one in Ely, Cambridgeshire and the other in Hull. The companies, formed of 30 young people between the ages of 13 and 18, meet once a week to explore the world of drama and provide a creative outlet for young people in the local area. 

LAMDA has been working with NYAT since the creation of their first young company in Ely in 2015, and this year we had the opportunity to bring a taste of LAMDA to the young companies through our Pathways workshops. Run by LAMDA tutors and graduates, Pathways workshops cover a range of topics from Introduction to Shakespeare to Stage Combat. The workshops are completely free and are designed to give young people a better understanding of life at drama school by experiencing LAMDA’s training.

LAMDA movement tutor Heriberto Montalbán led an exciting Introduction to Physical Theatre workshop with Ely’s young company in November 2016 while graduate Nathan Crossan-Smith led Introduction to Improvisation with Hull’s young company in March 2017.

Both workshops began with examples of vocal and physical warm ups and were followed by an intense, challenging and fun exploration of the chosen topics. Participants also had the opportunity to ask questions about drama school training and the arts with a Q&A led by LAMDA’s Access and Widening Participation Officer, Sophie.

Feedback from workshop participants said “the workshop was fun and non- judgemental”, “it was very engaging and fun” and that “nothing about today was negative, it was all positive”.

We are excited to continue working with NYAT and to continue growing LAMDA’s Pathways work to remove the social and financial barriers preventing young people from accessing performance arts activity and training, both at LAMDA and beyond.

Keep an eye on LAMDA’s website and social media channels for news of our upcoming collaborations with NYAT and our other partners.

Published on 3 May 2017


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