Directed by Kane Husbands, the production will visit a different school every day for 11 weeks across 11 areas in England as part of the NT’s largest ever schools tour. 12,000 young people in 55 schools across the country will have the opportunity to experience live theatre in their own school hall. In Outer East London and South Essex, the production will tour to Dagenham Park C of E School, Gaynes School, St Edward’s C of E Academy and Marshalls Park Academy from 9 – 13 January. School halls across the country will be transformed with a gigantic moveable climbing frame set.
In an innovative new collaboration with The PappyShow, residencies have been held with 100 students in three partner schools in Wakefield, Sunderland and Walsall to understand the experience of teenagers over the past few years and incorporate their voices into the piece. Shut Up, I’m Dreaming explores the hopes and dreams of young people in an uncertain world through an eclectic combination of movement, dance, music and audience participation.
The PappyShow is a physical theatre company which aims to platform marginalised identities and create diverse, joyful and collaborative productions rooted in the lived experience of their performers, bringing people together to move, dance, create moments of radical joy and share stories.
Kane Husbands, Director and Founder of The PappyShow said, “This new production, Shut Up, I’m Dreaming is a bright, brave response to our time. The research alone has been an incredible journey and we have been so inspired by how this next generation – our future change makers and leaders – have responded to us. At a time where we feel creativity is being removed from the curriculum, we believe taking performance and theatre directly to young people can inspire and make us dream of more, see things differently and connect us to our feelings. I hope we can inspire young people across the country to walk into and lead BIG Lives and to keep dreaming… their whole life.”
The cast includes Joseph Adelakun, Marc Benga, Jake Garvey, Lewis Griffin, Rachel-Leah Hosker, Rianna Kellman, Jeff D’Sangalang, Bianca Stephens, Molly Walker and Seda Yildiz.
The creative team includes set and costume designer Peter Butler, lighting designer Amy Mae, sound designer Roly Botha, composer Naomi Hammerton, songwriter Ty Lowe and assistant director Marc Benga.
The schools’ tour forms part of the National Theatre’s Theatre Nation Partnerships network to grow and sustain new audiences for live theatre and create more opportunities to engage in the arts.