This summer, the National Theatre is celebrating youth theatre as ten youth theatre companies and school groups from across the UK will stage new plays in the Dorfman Theatre as part of its 2023 Connections Festival.

Now in its 28th year, this annual nationwide youth theatre festival promises to be a celebration of young talent. Over 5,600 young individuals will take the stage, bringing to life ten brand-new plays crafted by a diverse array of established and emerging playwrights. Among the contributors are Lisa McGee, renowned for her work on the hit series “Derry Girls,” and Shamser Sinha, the creative force behind “Three Sat Under the Banyan Tree.”

Commissioned specifically for young performers, these ten plays delve into a wide range of themes that resonate deeply with today’s youth exploring topics such as justice, grief, love, teamwork, friendship, rural life, the end of the world, and the climate emergency.

Tickets are just £5 each, or £8 for both shows each evening, and are on sale now from the NT website.

This year, 264 groups have also been given the opportunity to showcase their selected plays at 36 leading partner venues across the UK, from Pitlochry in Scotland to Plymouth in Southwest England, with young people involved in all aspects of the theatre making process both on and off stage. This includes getting involved with costume, lighting and set design.

Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre said, “Watching talented young people from across the nation bring to life these new plays through the Connections Festival is a highlight of the National Theatre calendar. We hope all those who have participated this year have been inspired by what they have created and how they have created it. I can’t wait to see the Dorfman Theatre bursting with the talent from the selected ten groups as they represent the passion and imagination of young people today.”

All performances will be captioned.

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