The National Youth Music Theatre (NYMT) announces a trio of shows coming to Southwark Playhouse Elephant this Summer

The National Youth Music Theatre (NYMT)
announces a trio of shows coming to Southwark
Playhouse Elephant this Summer
Southwark Playhouse Elephant, 1 Dante Place, London, SE11 4RX
Into The Woods | Catastrophe Bay | Our House
August 2024

Leading youth arts organisation The National Youth Music Theatre (NYMT) has announced its 2024 summer season will debut at Southwark Playhouse Elephant, performed by the
remarkable Young Company Members of NYMT 2024, who are 10 – 23 years old. The season will feature Our House, showcasing iconic music from UK band Madness, Stephen Sondheim’s timeless classic Into the Woods, and an ambitious new folk musical Catastrophe Bay, written by Kit Buchan and James Barne. For nearly 50 years, NYMT has been at the forefront of offering exceptional opportunities in pre-professional musical theatre training for talented young people and this marks an exciting chapter in bringing these shows to the heart of London.

Chris Cuming, Artistic Director of NYMT, comments, NYMT 2024 will see the next generation of talented new voices taking to the stage in three fully mounted productions in London. Having seen our Young company members rehearse over Easter, we are certain that the journeys from the Woods to the Bay to the House will bring nothing but joy. The vibrancy and energy of the performances this year are extremely impressive. We’re also pleased to be introducing a season ticket so audiences can see all three productions in the summer. News on our other work across the year including our PLATFORM series will be released soon.

The season will kick off with NYMT presenting Stephen Sondheim’s Into The Woods. The Tony Award-winning book and score are enchanting in their poignancy, touching on the universal themes of family and friendship; love and loyalty; belonging and betrayal. It is an innovative and intricate retelling of well-known storybook characters thought-provoking allegory is relevant for audiences of all ages through the ages and is widely regarded as a modern classic.

This will be followed by a brand-new folk musical by successful British writing duo Jim Barne and Kit Buchan (Two Strangers Carry a Cake across New York, Kiln Theatre/West End), Catastrophe Bay will take audiences to another time and place populated by exotic characters from around the world. With a backdrop of smugglers and wreckers, deep in the wilds of Cornwall lies the tiny fishing village of Newfrock, the inhabitants are a curious and mischievous gaggle of misfits – who abide by a strange patchwork of rituals and beliefs to protect the village’s secrets

To conclude the season, Our House with music and lyrics by the iconic British band Madness (with one song, It Must Be Love, written by Labi Siffre), and the book by playwright Tim Firth is based in 1980s Camden Town. Featuring a collection of top hits by Madness including House of Fun, Baggy Trousers, Driving in my Car, It Must Be Love and of course Our House, this show is a modern British classic and one that the team is proud to present, particularly as we, like Madness, the NYMT are due to celebrate the 50th anniversary year since its inception.

Just under a thousand performers auditioned to join the NYMT 2024 company, who will all be following in the footsteps of the newly appointed patrons and further NYMT alumni including multi-award-winning household name Idris Elba, Phantom of the Opera’s Joe Griffiths-Brown, beloved screen and stage icon Sheridan Smith, and Les MisérablesRosy Church. The newly appointed patrons include previous alumni – critically acclaimed Matt Lucas, the award-winning Amara Okereke and It’s a Sin’s Callum Scott Howells. Industry professionals delivered audition workshops at 19 venues across the UK at the start of the year. Alongside these, NYMT has seen an increase in applications to join the company as Musicians and the Creative Team Mentorship Scheme.

NYMT are committed to delivering top-quality professional development and this year are
releasing new courses for not only stage performers but also for people who are interested in being Creative, Writers or want to work in Technical Theatre. These are non-residential courses in London that include watching a Technical and dress rehearsal at Southwark Playhouse as well as working with Industry Professionals. It offers skills workshops, masterclasses, and residential courses.

Everyone is welcome to get involved and NYMT is committed to making musical theatre and the professional industry more accessible to young people across the country, regardless of location or economic circumstances. National Youth Music Theatre (NYMT) has a long-standing commitment to an inclusive and accessible ethos. This year NYMT is offering £31,000 of bursaries from their bursary system to support under-resourced families.