Chewton Mendip

Chewton Mendip School end of Tempest workshop

It’s the start of a new school year, we are in the autumn of summer (see what I did there?) and as the nights draw in we need reasons to be cheerful!  Here’s a little face to cheer you up immediately!

Year 1 Tempest workshop

The Tempest workshop – Year 1 Pinchbeck East, Lincs

There are lots of little ones stepping out in their new school uniforms for the first time, and lots of anxious parents to boot! And it’s not just the four and five year olds who are dipping their toes in the lapping waves of life.  There are eleven year olds who are in a bit deeper, no longer just paddling but now taking their first strokes swimming in the sea of adolescence.  And then there are the eighteen year olds on the verge of submerging themselves completely in the choppy waters of adulthood.  Apprehensive times all round – so time to focus on the positive and find those reasons to be cheerful!

Here at FTW we are about to embark on our 10th anniversary year, and we kick off in style with  ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ at Montagu Academy in Mexborough, Yorkshire.

Hamlet, Montagu Academy 2013

Hamlet, Year 6 at Montagu Academy 2013

This will be our fourth visit to this lovely school and having exhausted the tragedies with them (Hamlet, Macbeth and Romeo & Juliet), it’s nice to be lightening the mood with a rom com! So that’s our first reason to be cheerful this school year! Then later in the term we are returning to All Saints Primary, Whiteparish near Salisbury to do ‘Romeo and Juliet’ – not instantly recognisable as cheerful, I grant you, but some of our soundtrack is guaranteed to get your feet tapping!

Mixed in with the work in schools is the other strand of FINDING THE WILL. Our show ‘Bard Heads’ is for students (12+) and adults and explores what may have happened next to certain characters in some of Shakespeare’s plays. Each of the six shows in the collection is a monologue and is a kind of Shakespeare meets Alan Bennett experience! All in modern language with passing references to the original play (but without the need to be familiar with it), it makes for an entertaining night out!

“It put the fun aspect back into traditional Shakespeare” Theatre by the Lake, Keswick

“A compelling and moving story beautifully written and performed” StageTalk Magazine

 “If these pieces don’t become BBC Radio 4 afternoon plays there is something wrong with the world.” The Gloucester Citizen.

We work In association with the Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham where we will be performing on 12 November – you can check out our brochure entry here:

Bard Heads Back of flyer

Bard Heads (reverse)

‘The Third Witch From The Left’ inspired by Macbeth and ‘Call Me Oz’ inspired by Hamlet are popular this autumn. We are also performing these two shows in October and November at The Greyladyes Arts Foundation in Bursledon, Hants and at Tangley Parish Hall near Andover respectively, thanks to the Hog The Limelight rural touring scheme. More on all of this in future Latest News updates but for now, time to introduce another Associate Practitioner Maeve:

Maeve Leahy

Maeve Leahy – Associate Practitioner

Maeve is an Irish actress and singer who studied theatre at University College Cork and trained as an actor at Drama Studio London. Based in London since 2005 she has toured both in the UK and internationally in a broad range of roles from Shakespeare and other classical works to contemporary writing and devised pieces. Maeve has been facilitating drama and singing workshops with key stage 1 and 2 for over 10 years.

So all in all we think there is quite a lot to be positive about in the coming year. If you are one of the anxious parents (of children at any age), take heart (you are not alone), have courage (they will be fine and so will you!) and stay cheerful – after all it’s exciting isn’t it?

Cheerio for now!



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