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News: Live Youth Theatre Share Their Experiences Of Lockdown In Online Video - The Reconnection Collection

 Live Youth Theatre Share Their Experiences Of Lockdown In Online Video - The Reconnection Collection 

Live Theatre have released The Reconnection Collection, a short film featuring the work and voices of Live Youth Theatre members, created during and in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown. 

Available to view online, The Reconnection Collection is a moving, funny and fascinating insight into the thoughts and observations of young people aged 10-25 during these challenging times. 

Live Youth Theatre is a vital part of Live Theatre’s acclaimed work with children and young people.  The Live Theatre team and Live Youth Theatre members weren’t going to allow the physical restrictions necessitated by the pandemic to put a hold on their creativity. Although the 100 Live Youth Theatre members were unable to meet in person in their Live Theatre base, nothing could stop them from reconnecting on line and in safety via the platform of Zoom.  

In September 2020, Live Youth Theatre’s Autumn term commenced with weekly online sessions, facilitated with freelance theatre makers. Filmmaker Brett Chapman worked alongside the young people and the team to curate and capture cohesive content – the outcome of which is the superb short film, The Reconnection Collection. 

Helen Green, Children and Young Peoples Lead said: “One of the hardest things about Live Theatre being closed - we are badly missing the hordes of young people who clamber all over the building every evening, with tons of energy and loads of noise. Since September, over on Zoom, Youth Theatre have reconnected. Working with a team of hugely talented freelancer facilitators and a fantastic filmmaker, these young people have created a film, which just makes you feel better.” 

Ten freelance drama facilitators worked with the young people over the Autumn term.  Liv Hunt one of the drama facilitators commented: “I'm super proud of the young people who worked on the project this year. It's been a tough old year but they were still able to bring heaps of energy and creativity to the sessions.  And strangely, I feel like I've got to know them more as individuals this year despite not being in the same room together! They're all mint and I can't wait to see what they do next”  

Live Youth Theatre is the largest free theatre and drama programme for young people in the North East of England, providing members with the opportunity to develop self-confidence and create original plays and theatre that reflect their views and opinions. The team at Live Theatre were delighted that 100 Live Youth Theatre Members signed up for an Autumn Term like no other.  

Feedback from all involved has been fabulous. Live Youth Theatre member Connor reflects on his experience: "There are very few places that have provided young people with the experience, education and the abundance of self-worth that Live Theatre has done. What's even more impressive is how Live Theatre still continues during the pandemic by going online, giving young people the confidence, hope, and a supportive community during the hardest of times.” 

Connor added: “Live Youth Theatre’s film was a complete curve ball to what we knew as theatre. It allowed us to explore our emotions, opinions and current experiences about lockdown while living in the moment, displaying an incredibly intuitive mixture of theatre. Live Youth Theatre is truly as safe haven for those of the future." 

Filmmaker Brett Chapman said: “Getting to curate this film has been one of the highlights of the last year for me, no question. Seeing so much creativity from so many young people is super inspiring, especially in the midst of what has been such an uncertain time for everyone in the arts. I hope people have as much fun watching the film as I had putting it together and I look forward to seeing what all the contributors make next.” 

Helen Green added: “The Reconnection Collection perfectly captures members’ feelings, their imagination, their friendship and energy. It is a credit to their resilience, and their unwavering love of making theatre together.” 

Live Youth Theatre is supported by grants from the Shears Foundation, the Squires Foundation, the Lucy Winskell Fund and the Hadrian Trust.  

Part of Live Theatre’s Live Wired season, The Reconnection Collection is available to view on line free of charge at:  

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