Five Tees Valley venues have today (November 7) launched ticket sales for a dynamic new show inspired by and starring young people from across the region.
Youthquake, by the award-winning Zest Theatre, is described as “part show, part TED Talk and part party”, which takes you on an exhilarating journey through Teen Britain and asks what it actually means to change the world.
To help develop the piece, the company engaged with 800 young people from across the UK and spent five weeks in Tees Valley speaking to more than 500 of them, hearing their stories and learning of their experiences.
At each venue, the two main cast members, Harris Cain and Claire Gaydon, will be supported by an ensemble of young people from that borough, with local voices and insights interwoven with the main story.
The show, which has won a raft of rave reviews, will have its regional premiere at Hartlepool’s Centre for Excellence in Creative Arts on 16/17 January 2020 before touring the remaining local authority areas during the following weeks. Four performances will take place at each venue, which will be a mixture of productions for schools and the general public.
Tees Valley Combined Authority Chief Executive Julie Gilhespie said: “While the Combined Authority is driving economic growth and creating jobs, we can never lose sight of who we’re doing it for – our region’s young people. We need to give them the opportunities to be the best they can be and build a life for themselves in the region. To do this we must listen to what they are saying to tackle the issues which are important to them.
“Zest Theatre has been working with our teenagers to produce this fantastic show which is a meaningful addition to our cultural calendar. I’d urge teachers, teenagers and adults alike to get a ticket and support our young actors and their stories.”
Zest’s Catherine Fowles, who produced the show, said: “We’re so pleased to be bringing Youthquake ‘home’ to Tees Valley, having spent most of our time making and rehearsing the show here! Youthquake has been an incredibly transformative experience for everyone involved, from our team that conducted the initial workshops to the young people who have joined our casts across the country.
“We are beyond excited to be able to share the same experience with our young casts in Tees Valley, all of the young people we’ve met who have helped shape the show for the region, and the audiences who will hear their stories thanks to the support of Tees Valley Combined Authority.”
The show was commissioned by Tees Valley Combined Authority alongside The Civic Barnsley and Lincoln Drill Hall.
Pictured: Actors Harris Cain, Claire Gaydon and Lincoln College cast. Production photography: Phil Crow. Design by Verity Quinn. Lighting design by Ben Pacey.