Rotary is proud to partner with Shakespeare Schools Festival

Rotary is proud to partner with Shakespeare Schools Festival

Shakespeare Schools Festival (SSF) is the world’s largest youth drama festival, using a rigorous and supportive process to train teachers and young people in an active and ambitious way of working with and performing Shakespeare.

Months of preparation culminate in exhilarating performance evenings in professional theatres. In 2016, over 30,000 young people will take to 131 stages from the length and breadth of the UK. Since 2000, SSF has changed the lives of over a quarter of a million children and their teachers.

Through SSF, young people change their attitude to learning. Their process instills curiosity and empathy, aspiration and self esteem with profound results in and out of the classroom. Their impact on disadvantaged children is particularly important. Every year, the charity strives to work with those from the hardest to reach backgrounds and with special educational needs.

In this 400th anniversary since Shakespeare’s death, SSF has shown their work to a wide range of audiences – including the Queen and the Prime Minister. The performers have taken to stages at the SSF reception at No. 11 Downing Street, the garden of No. 10 Downing Street, Middle Temple Hall, Windsor, in Poet’s Corner (in front of Shakespeare’s memorial and literally on the shoulders of Olivier) and on a West End stage for our anniversary gala. Their best ever Festival will reach every corner of the UK and finally, in November, SSF will put Hamlet on trial, prosecuted and defended by some of this country’s top QCs and in front of Lady Justice Hallett, in a unique performance.

Shakespeare Schools Festival thanks all Rotary members who have supported them and the schools who participate in the festival each year.

In 2015, Northwood Interact club performed Twelfth Night at the 600-seat Beck Theatre in Hayes, while Coed Cae Interact club gave A Midsummer Night’s Dream a 21st century twist, all with the help of Rotary volunteers.

One lucky SSF group even performed extracts from their productions at the 2016 Rotary Conference in Bournemouth (above) with the support of Call the Midwife star and SSF Patron, Jenny Agutter OBE.

You can support your community by buying tickets for your local performance and ensuring that every child performs to a full and engaged audience.

After months of preparation, children in your area are getting ready to take to the stage to share their achievements. For many, it will be their first experience in a theatre, let alone to perform in one. As partners to Shakespeare Schools Festival we want to make sure that their first experience is as special as possible and that their performance is truly celebrated.

Find a Shakespeare Schools Festival performance near you and contact theatres for tickets.

The relationship with SSF is therefore another opportunity for Rotary members to assist their community by bringing their individual skills to helping people develop skills towards fundraising, set building, costume making or in some circumstances helping fund the shortfall in registration for participation.

If you are a school who would like Rotary’s assistance in getting involved in the Shakespeare Schools Festival, then please fill in the form below, and we will be in touch.

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Ken Robertshaw, Rotary Club of Halifax
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