Buxton’s Young Company wins place at festival

bassett%202Buxton Opera House has beaten stiff competition to win a place in the National Theatre Connections Festival.

The Opera House will produce one of ten plays by new writers, to run at the Pavilion Arts Centre in March before transferring to another, yet to be decided, regional theatre.

The production will be directed by the Opera House learning and participation officer Craig Sanders, who has directed new writing for NT Connections since its re-launch in 2011 and who headed up the application process to win the Opera House a place.

Buxton Opera House interim chief executive, Stella McCabe said: “I am delighted that Craig’s hard work has paid off and Buxton Opera House’s Young Company has been selected to be part of National Connections next year.

“It is not only a wonderful opportunity for the young people involved, it also allows us to celebrate new writing and re-connect the Opera House with other theatres regionally and nationally.

“It is the perfect way to launch our new Young Company which will offer young people from across the High Peak region the opportunity to develop not only their performance skills but also gain experience in aspects of marketing and technical theatre”.

Connections began 20 years ago and since then the National Theatre has commissioned and published more than 140 plays, allowing young people across the UK and Ireland access to the very best new writing for theatre.

The Connections Festival is renowned for providing an exceptional experience to all participants and as a result gets hundreds of applications from theatre groups across the country.

Craig added: “It will be a phenomenal opportunity for those involved and importantly, it will celebrate the fantastic talent of young people in the High Peak and beyond at a national level.

“We are launching our new Young Company in the autumn and so anyone aged 12-25 with a keen interest in theatre from performing to backstage, marketing and design should get in touch and join us to be part of something really special”.


Emma Friend, assistant producer for NT Connections, said: “We were inundated with applications, and were heavily oversubscribed for this extremely exciting year of Connections.”


The Festival provides theatre students experience of professional theatre-making, mirroring that of a professional company producing a new play in any theatre in the country.


Participants will create marketing campaigns, design sets and costumes, operate lighting and sound boards and stage-manage their performances.

For information about how to join Buxton Opera House Young Company and the National Theatre Connections Festival, please contact learning and participation at Buxton Opera House by emailing: participation@boh.org.uk .