NATIONAL YOUTH THEATRE ANNOUNCE INCLUSIVE PRACTICE COLLECTIVE – A NEW INITIATIVE TO CREATE 60 JOBS AND BRING DRAMA TO DISABLED YOUNG PEOPLE IN 15 SCHOOLS
- THE COMPANY ARE INVITING YOUNG PEOPLE, SPECIALIST SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES, AND CULTURAL COMMUNITY PARTNERS IN GREATER MANCHESTER AND WEST YORKSHIRE TO WORK WITH THEM
- THE NYT’s INCLUSIVE PRACTICE COLLECTIVE IS A PROGRAMME ENABLED BY THE GOVERNMENT’S KICKSTART SCHEME
The National Youth Theatre have announced an open call to young people, specialist schools and colleges (known as SEND*), and cultural community partners initially in Greater Manchester and West Yorkshire to work with the company on a new national Inclusive Practice Collective.
Inspired by young people engaged in National Youth Theatre’s inclusion programme and its work in schools, the Inclusive Practice Collective is an urgent response offering creativity, connection and a boost to drama provision in schools for disabled young people and will provide crucial jobs for young creatives facing unemployment.
Paul Roseby OBE, CEO and Artistic Director of National Youth Theatre, said: “Disabled people and all young people are most at risk of reduced opportunities post-Covid. Rising unemployment figures emphasise the urgent need for a social and cultural recovery that prioritises creative jobs, ensures accessible and inclusive opportunities and celebrates the diversity of British youth in all its forms and that’s exactly what our new Inclusive Practice Collective is designed to do.”
Rachel Denning, Actor and NYT alumna, who is working with the company on their Inclusive Practice programme, said: “I am so excited to see this Kickstart programme happen, we need young and passionate allies to continue making this industry an inclusive one. Inclusion should be cool, creative and at the forefront of our practice; National Youth Theatre and its members have the power to do this and they are such an important voice in our industry.”
The Staff and Students ofHighshore School said: “Highshore School has been working with the National Youth Theatre since spring 2018 to pilot a variety of inclusive workshops and after school clubs. Students that have taken part have become more confident, have been more willing to work with others and have found new ways to communicate not only in their drama but in their school life”
The collective is enabled by the Government’s Kickstart Scheme and in its first year will create a programme of regular National Youth Theatre opportunities for young disabled people in 15 schools and colleges around the country and 60 paid job placements for young people on Universal Credit. Formal recruitment will begin in March with a pro-active search working with community partners, job centres and referral agencies including the local authority and youth employment programme in NYT’s home borough of Islington. All young people interested in joining the Inclusive Practice Collective are encouraged to apply here.
NYT particularly welcome applications from people whose identities are currently under-represented in the performing arts and have made a positive commitment to employing d/Deaf and disabled people and guarantee to interview all d/Deaf and disabled candidates who meet the minimum essential criteria for the role. Specialist schools and colleges and cultural community partners rooted in their local communities can email [email protected] by 25 March 2021 to express an interest in partnering on the scheme, which aims to build a national community of SEND* schools with a focus on creativity and the arts.
The Inclusive Practice Collective will create 60 new paid job placements for young inclusion facilitators aged 18-24; facilitate two academic terms of regular inclusive theatre activity for disabled young people in 15 SEND Schools and Colleges initially in Greater Manchester, Leeds, Bradford, West Yorkshire and London; up-skill and support young inclusion facilitators with industry-led talent development; work with cultural partners rooted in their communities to connect the collective to existing programmes and future employment opportunities; stage a digital festival for the collective celebrating inclusive theatre practice in schools and colleges and offer progression routes for young disabled people into the National Youth Theatre membership, as well as other local cultural opportunities.
In the first year of the Inclusive Practice Collective job placements will last six months with cohorts starting in August 2021 and December 2021. Activity will be delivered in partner schools between September 2021 and May 2022.
The creation of these new Inclusion Facilitator roles is inspired by NYT’s young members’ commitment to inclusion, who have been working with the company on this programme and want to develop careers in Inclusive Practice. NYT wants to respond to the impact of the pandemic on employment prospects for young creative people by empowering a new generation of paid inclusive practice practitioners. Through an inclusive digital festival celebrating the work of the collective, NYT hopes to form national connections between schools and colleges, engage with like-minded cultural partners around the country, to join up with existing provision and signpost the collective to future employment opportunities.
The collective marks the national expansion of NYT’s growing Inclusive Practice programme, which is designed to build the representation of young disabled talent within our membership and reduce barriers to accessing our opportunities. The collective, informed by SEND* schools, will offer creativity, connectivity and opportunities for young disabled people within school environments.
Inclusive Practice is essential to National Youth Theatre work, making sure that the company is always a welcoming and accessible place for disabled and neurodiverse young people. As part of this commitment NYT are a Cultural Inclusion Manifesto supporter, and run a programme of targeted work which has recently included successful partnerships for three years with London schools Highshore and Samuel Rhodes in NYT’s home borough of Inslington; inclusion training for NYT staff, associate artists and inclusion ambassadors; the introduction of relaxed performances and auditions; commissions foregrounding disabled narratives and performers and successful creative collaborations with inclusive sector leaders Diverse City, Extraordinary Bodies and Touretteshero. In Spring 2021 the company will complete a major transformation of their HQ in the London Borough of Islington into a National Production House, which has been designed in consultation with Access=Design and disabled NYT members to prioritise accessibility and includes a Changing Places facility. Three new plays by Athena Stevens, Nessah Muthy and Ann Akin are currently also under commission, which foreground disabled stories and characters. Young disabled voices are represented strongly amongst NYT’s Youth Trustees and Centre Stage Creatives based around the UK.
Young people interested in joining the Inclusive Practice Collective can apply here: https://form.jotformeu.com/210334970893359. Formal recruitment will begin in March. NYT particularly welcome applications from people whose identities are currently under-represented in the performing arts and have made a positive commitment to employing d/Deaf and disabled people and guarantee to interview all d/Deaf and disabled candidates who meet the minimum essential criteria for the role.
If you’re interested in being a partner host school or local cultural partner you can email [email protected]t.org.uk by 25 March 2021 to arrange a call to discuss working with NYT.
Find out more about our Inclusive Practice programme
Find out more about the Government’s KickStart programme