Tenth Anniversary NYT REP Company Season Announced
THE GROUND-BREAKING FREE INDUSTRY-BASED ALTERNATIVE TO FORMAL TRAINING WILL PRESENT THREE PRODUCTIONS
GONE TOO FAR! BY BOLA AGBAJE DIRECTED BY MONIQUE TOUKO BEST DIRECTOR AT THE STAGE DEBUT AWARDS 2022 AT THEATRE ROYAL STRATFORD EAST
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING REMIXED BY DEBRIS STEVENSON AND DIRECTED BY JOSIE DAXTER AT THE DUKE OF YORK’S THEATRE IN THE WEST END WITH 1000 £10 TICKETS
AND A NEW VERSION BY ANNE CARSON OF BAKKHAI DIRECTED BY MAISIE NEWMAN, THE 2022 BRYAN FORBES BURSARY DIRECTOR AT THE NYT’S WORKSHOP THEATRE
OVER THE PAST TEN YEARS THE REP HAS WELCOMED 154 YOUNG PERFORMERS, 8 YOUNG DIRECTORS AND HAS PRESENTED 30 PRODUCTIONS, 19 OF WHICH WERE IN THE WEST END, REACHING OVER 100K AUDIENCE MEMBERS
LAUNCHED IN RESPONSE TO THE RISE IN DRAMA SCHOOL FEES, THE REP IS FREE WITH BURSARY SUPPORT AVAILABLE AND HAS PROVIDED THE EQUIVALENT OF OVER £1.3MILLION WORTH OF INVALUABLE INDUSTRY-BASED LEARNING
Tickets are on sale www.nyt.org.uk/whats-on
In 2012 Paul Roseby, Artistic Director and CEO of National Youth Theatre (NYT), launched a new REP company, co-created with Associate Director Anna Niland, that would provide intensive real-world experience each year to a group of young performers and creatives. Taking inspiration from the old repertory company model, the NYT REP has sought to bring its training and learning model sharply into the modern era. As well as presenting theatre, members of the company have performed and created work with NYT at London Fashion Week, This Bright Land and Latitude festivals, the Olympic and Paralympic Team Welcome Ceremony, and Glasgow’s COP26 presenting work that brought young people’s views on the climate crisis to the conference.
One of the only companies to stage productions the day theatres were allowed to reopen following the pandemic, the REP premiered a new production of Animal Farm at Northampton’s Royal and Derngate on 17 May 2021. Other notable productions have included the West End debut of James Graham’s Tory Boyz in 2013, the first stage adaptation of Carol Ann Duffy’s The World’s Wife at The Ambassadors Theatre in 2014, Macbeth at the Garrick Theatre which was the first production of the play in the West End to feature a female Macbeth, and Animal Farm, as part of an Arts Council funded national tour, performed on a farm at an outdoor theatre in Shropshire newly created in response to the pandemic.
The company has worked with a dazzling array of creative talent including Josh Azouz, Neil Bartlett, Dzifa Benson, Ned Bennett, Moira Buffini, Lolita Chakrabarti, Miranda Cromwell, Frantic Assembly, James Graham, Tatty Hennessy, Kane Husbands, Emily Lim, Michael Morpurgo, Gbolahan Obisesan, Evan Placey, Ed Stambollouian, Stephanie Street, Roy Alexander Weise and more.
The company has seen its former members go on to achieve remarkable success with graduates playing leading roles on stage and screen, including Lauren Lyle currently appearing in the title role in ITV's Karen Pirie and BAFTA nominated Ṣọpẹ́ Dìrísù (His House, Gangs of London), both of whom are mentoring members of this year's current REP Company.
Paul Roseby OBE, CEO & Artistic Director said: “It’s 10 years since we launched the NYT REP in response to the rise in drama school fees, but the challenges faced by young talent around the UK today is greater than ever with the cost of living crisis and decline of arts in schools. This year’s REP will offer opportunity, entertainment and hope. Young will talent takeover an iconic West End venue with tickets from £10, Bola Agbaje’s award-winning debut is revived offering a welcome shake-up to the curriculum and a young director supported by the Bryan Forbes Bursary reinterprets a classic for our time. Learning by doing it through a free industry-based audience-facing approach has been a game-changer over the last 10 years, as the REP graduates leading major shows prove. Now more than ever we must support flexible free alternative routes for young talent to take centre stage and bring young talent and audiences back to the West End.”
In this 10th year the NYT REP company led by NYT Associate Director Anna Niland will be made up of: Hannah Zoé Ankrah, Tomás Azocar-Nevin, Eleanor Booth, Chloe Cooper, Daniel Cawley, Jack D’Arcy, Jez Davess-Humphrey, Jessica Enemokwu, Isolde Fenton, Kira Golightly, Thuliswa Magwaza, Dalumuzi Moyo, Olivia Ng, Jasmine Ricketts, Nathaly Sabino and Jerome Scott. Each year NYT REP members are mentored by industry professional including casting directors, producers and performers. This year they will be mentored by Isabel Adomakoh Young, Amy Ball, Rikki Beadle-Blair, Johnny Capps, Steffan Donnelly, Ṣọpẹ́ Dìrísù, Lucianne McEvoy, Ray Fearon, Kane Husbands, Bryony Jarvis-Taylor, Kate Kennedy, Lauren Lyle, Ruth O'Dowd, Amanda Wilkin and Ashley Zhangazha.
The NYT REP will perform in productions of:
Much Ado About Nothing
By William Shakespeare
Remixed by Debris Stevenson
Directed by Josie Daxter
Duke of York’s Theatre
Some Cupid kills with arrows, some with traps
Shakespeare’s much-loved comedy meets reality TV romance in a raucous and lyrical adaptation by poet and playwright Debris Stevenson (Poet in da Corner, Royal Court) at the iconic Duke of York’s Theatre in London’s West End. Josie Daxter (NYT alumna), who has worked extensively with The PappyShow and Complicite, playfully directs this modern-day love story as we go behind the cameras into a loved-up world of gossip, matchmaking and manipulation. Don’t miss some of Britain’s best young talent taking over the West End with 1000 £10 tickets on sale for this 10th anniversary NYT REP Company production.
Theatre Royal Stratford East and the National Youth Theatre present
Gone Too Far!
By Bola Agbaje
Directed by Monique Touko
Theatre Royal Stratford East
Bola Agbaje’s Olivier Award-winning remarkable debut GONE TOO FAR! returns to a major London stage in 2023 for the first time since becoming a GCSE set text. When two brothers from different continents go down the street to buy a pint of milk, they lift the lid on a disunited nation; a world where everyone wants to be an individual, but no one wants to stand out from the crowd, and where respect is always demanded but rarely freely given.
Agbaje’s comic and vibrant drama examining identity and heritage is the first co-production between Theatre Royal Stratford East and the National Youth Theatre. Directed with wit and energy by Monique Touko (The Clinic Almeida Theatre) who recently won Best Director at The Stage Debut Awards 2022 for Malindadzimu at the Hampstead Theatre.
Starring some of Britain’s best young talent from the illustrious NYT REP Company in its 10th anniversary season, the production follows the NYT’s collaboration with Agbaje on Bitches at the Finborough Theatre in 2016. Gone Too Far!’s premiere at the Royal Court Theatre in 2007 starred NYT Patron and alumna Zawe Ashton. It was adapted for the big screen to critical acclaim in 2013. Press night will be on Tuesday 28 March at 7.30pm.
A new version by Anne Carson
Directed by Maisie Newman
NYT Workshop Theatre
Ancient Greece and gig theatre collide in a boldly reimagined Bakkhai like you’ve never seen it before. Underscored with original electronic music, filled with celebratory raucous dance and devised with some of Britain’s most exciting new talent from the NYT REP, Bakkhai is directed by Maisie Newman, recipient of the 2022 Bryan Forbes Directors Bursary, at the NYT Workshop Theatre. Maisie will be mentored by Sarah Frankcom as part of her Bryan Forbes Bursary.
National Youth Theatre would like to thank the following for their support of our 2022/23 NYT REP Company: our principal supporter Arts Council England; The Leverhulme Trust, Ian McKellen, the Clothworkers’ Foundation and Helen Mirren for their support of bursaries; Spotlight for their support of The REP Industry Performances for agents, casting directors and creative professionals to see each show in the season (email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information); International Music and Art Foundation; Idlewild Trust and The Austin & Hope Pilkington Trust. We’re very grateful to all those who have donated to the Bryan Forbes Bursary for Young Directors and in particular Emma Forbes and Graham Clempson. We would also like to thank all of NYT's Centre Stage Supporters and Investors in Talent.