National Festival of Youth Theatre by Iona Mathieson (S5)

For the past couple of years we have had the privilege of having a Drama Worker from Eden Court Creative come to Invergordon Academy for two hours every Wednesday to tutor  and develop the skills of the Invergordon Youth Theatre. This year we had the amazing opportunity to go to Fife for the National Festival of Youth Theatre Theatre. While we were there we met many other talented drama queens from all over the country, and also a drama group from Ireland and France.

On the morning of Friday 5th July, Invergordon Youth Theatre, which at the time consisted of Molly Drummond, Kathleen Whiteford, Alanis Macleod, Freya Dane, Hollie Mackay, Aoibheann Nicolson, Rachel Goodwin and I, set off on a riveting 3 hour bus journey/I-spy game. We camped for the weekend at the Falkland camping estate and travelled to Glenrothes Hall each day, which is a theatre/shopping centre. Our weekend was made up with our choice of workshops: we could choose from the Artistic Mix, NFYT Critics or NFYT Scratch. The Artistic Mix gave us the opportunity to gain a grounding in things like magic, dance, comedy, stage combat, singing and, of course, drama. The critic workshops allowed people to watch every performance and give constructive criticism on them on film. The ‘NFYT scratch’ workshops allowed a group of people to devise a piece of theatre over the course of the weekend which was shown to the rest of NFYT on the final night.

In between the workshops we watched the performances that the other drama groups had taken to NFYT. This, as well as performing our own devised production “The Hidden”, was one of my favourite bits of NFYT. Another one of the great things we got to do was meet new people from all over the world. I think the open mic was definitely everyone’s favourite though, as there were some very funny acts from all groups, and it showed the range of talents that people had. NFYT is open to ages 14 – 23 which means that all the people are generally the same age and most groups are from schools.

It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience as it gave our drama group the opportunity to meet so many great people and it boosts your confidence so much. I would definitely recommend it to anyone, whether you are interested in performing or not, as it gives you so many skills and leaves you with great memories. The atmosphere is great and you will be guaranteed a good time. Plus, even the camping bit was great fun! The only downside was Kathleen’s snoring and Rachel’s bad smell.

– Iona Mathieson (S5)

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