The extended diploma second year Performing Arts students have been participating in the National Theatre’s New Views script writing programme. The programme is the National Theatre’s annual playwriting programme for 14 - 19 year olds and this year they have been working with 70 educational establishments nationwide.

Following workshops and feedback with playwright Brian Mullin, they were required to write a 30 minute script for stage about the challenging, real-life issues that matter to them.

The programme states that; ‘Through participating in the New Views programme students will have the unique and exciting opportunity to:

• Explore their talent and sharpen their approach to research, as well as their ability to develop and articulate ideas on key ethical questions and dilemmas.

• Develop a sense of connection to the arts, a lifelong enthusiasm for theatre and an understanding of the power of theatre to engage audiences in serious debate.

• Develop their transferable skills for employment and further study including self-management, team working and communication, application of literacy, problem solving, independence and critical engagement with subject material.’

‘Every year, hundreds of students from across the UK learn about playwriting from some of the finest writers in the industry and write their own 30-minute plays. One play will then be selected to be produced at the NT with a professional cast and crew, alongside rehearsed readings of the shortlisted plays.’

This has been a fantastic experience for our students and we have just had news that two of our students have been longlisted; Hayden Crowley with his play ‘Unknown’ and Natasha Armstrong with ‘Scars and Bruises’.

Andrew Pritchard, NT’s Secondary & FE Programme Coordinator wrote:

‘Our professional writers have been incredibly impressed by your student's work, and they have selected the plays that make up this year’s Longlist.’

The shortlist will be released on May 22nd.