Auditions Access Fund

The National Youth Theatre's Auditions Access Fund supported by Hugh Bonneville

The Auditions Access Fund is a grant which supports free drama workshops and auditions for young people with limited access to the arts. Launched in 2018, as part of our ongoing commitment to outreach, the Auditions Access Fund is supported by NYT Alumnus and Patron Hugh Bonneville.

Now in its third year we're looking to work with partners who work with young people with limited access to arts provision, or from backgrounds currently underrepresented in the theatre industry.

As a partner, you will support us in connecting with local young people, and engaging them in free online drama workshops and the opportunity to audition for free to join the National Youth Theatre. 

We are particularly interested in hearing from grassroots organisations, learning departments, schools, or youth groups which are based outside of London. 

Applications now closed

“I loved it. It was an experience that I’ll never forget” – 2019 participant 


How do I get involved in the Auditions Access Fund? 

Every year we work with 10 partners who currently work with young people aged 14-25, who have limited access to arts provision or are from backgrounds currently underrepresented in Theatre. 

We're looking for partners who are passionate about access to the arts, already have a group of young people who would be suitable participants, and have links to their local area to help us reach young people who may not currently participate in the partner's existing activity. 

Sound like you? Apply by 15 December 2020. 

What is the Auditions Access Fund? 

The Auditions Access Fund is a grant which supports free drama workshops and auditions for young people with limited access to the arts. 

Each partner will receive: 

  • Two online workshops for their young people: These are faciliated by NYT Associate Artists, and focused on introducing the young people to drama, NYT and the audition process. 
  • Free Hub Subscriptions for every participant: This provides access to an online space which offers free industry workshops, resources and the chance to Audition for NYT
  • Free NYT Auditions for every participant: Every participant will be able to access a free NYT Audition, which this year will take the form of a self-tape digital audition, via the Hub. Full instructions on how to submit their audition tape will be covered as part of the online workshops. 

What happens if I am successful in my audition? 

If you successfully audition you will be invited to join one of the National Youth Theatre's Intake Courses. Following the course you will become National Youth Theatre Member and gain access to a whole host of opportunities including workshops, Creative Leadership training, external castings, and more. 

How else can the National Youth Theatre support me in taking part? 

The Auditions Access Fund is not the only way to audition to join the National Youth Theatre. 

Anyone based in the UK and aged 11-25 can join the NYT Hub to access workshops and resources. If you're aged 14-25 you can also take part in one of our Digital Intake Auditions, via the Hub. Fee Waivers and Bursaries are available to support participation.

Work in a school? We offer the chance to bring a National Youth Theatre audition day to your school, with concessionary rates available to state schools.

Previous Auditions Access Fund Partners

Every year we recruit Auditions Access Fund partners through both an open application process and targeted outreach work. 


  • Black Ticket Project, Bush Theatre, London 
  • Theatr Clwyd (Learning Department) Flintshire
  • Lourdes School, Glasgow 
  • Nuffield Southampton Theatres and Itchen College, Southampton
  • Pool Academy, Cornwall 
  • Nottingham University Samworth Academy, Nottingham
  • The Playhouse, Derry
  • Theatre Royal (Learning Department) Plymouth & Doorstep Arts Torbay 
  • The Studio, Widnes
  • Scarborough Tec, Scarborough 


  • Theatre for Life Youth Theatre & Itchen College, Southampton 
  • Pembrokeshire College, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire 
  • The Ebbsfleet Academy, Ebbsfleet, Kent 
  • Cockburn John Charles Academy, Leeds 
  • The English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College, Hartlepool 
  • Liskeard School and Community College, Liskeard 
  • The Playhouse, Derry 
  • Fusion Young Performers, Minehead, Somerset 
  • The Core, Corby 
  • Belgrade Theatre, Coventry 


"Becoming a member of the NYT changed my life and I’m delighted to be playing my part in giving the next generation a similar opportunity."  

Hugh Bonneville

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