We're proud to have been shortlisted for the UK Sponsorship Awards 2017 in their Charity & Community Engagement Sponsorship arm for our partnership with Arsenal in the Community and our partnership project Play On.
Motivated by our production of Boy we wanted to create a programme of work to engage young people who have never previously engaged with our work, or with theatre before. Led by Almeida Participation and funded by the Arsenal Foundation, we commissioned four playwrights to work with 40 young people, involved in Arsenal in the Community’s youth programmes, to create Play On – a playwriting project inspired by the themes and issues in the play. Play On was performed on the our stage by professional actors before performances of Boy on Monday 2 May and Tuesday 3 May.
Our Artistic Director Rupert Goold says: “We’re very proud that Play On has been shortlisted for a UK Sponsorship Award under Charity and Community Engagement. This partnership between the Almeida and Arsenal in the Community wholly embodies our vision of community engagement in the heart of our shared borough. Islington is a complex, socially and economically diverse borough. Working with Arsenal in the Community, with their established track record in supporting the local community, enabled us to engage with their networks of local young people for the first time. Through the project we introduced young people - many of whom were new to the theatre - to the experience of creating and performing their own work, encouraging them to share their own stories. Play On harnessed their immense creative talent. The partnership has created a meaningful and lasting legacy through the relationships it helped form and the stories it helped tell. We are delighted that we continue to work with these young people in our on-going participation programme.”
Alan Sefton, Head of Arsenal in the Community, said: ‘We’re delighted our work with the Almeida Theatre has been shortlisted for this prestigious award. The Play On project offered some of the young people involved in our football and education programmes the chance to do something new and exciting. I’m proud to say everyone took to it in a big way, and it proved a really positive experience.”