Wolverhampton’s Central Youth Theatre is putting the finishing touches to a special show, Memories in a Shoe Box, celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the group.
Founding Director Jane Ward MBE, has spent the last twelve months trawling through the youth theatre’s historical archives to pen a light-hearted show celebrating the many performances and projects staged over the years by the thousands of former members
Running for four performances at Tettenhall College from Friday 7th – Sunday 9th July the performances are attracting many of the groups alumni to return to their home city to attend the performances. The Mayor of Wolverhampton will also be in attendance for the opening show on Friday 7th July at 7.30pm
Jane says: “As the Founding Director this show is very personal to me, as it’s about 40 years of hard work and personal highs and lows. The real challenge has been how to encapsulate so much history and so many stories into one show. Over the years we have staged over two hundred and fifty shows, performed in 16 different countries at countless international festivals and created many artistic projects celebrating the City’s local history. So figuring out how to cram all this into one script has led to many sleepless nights during the writing process. Each decade has been condensed into four different acts. Then for good measure it has a prologue and an epilogue. So audiences should be prepared for an epic Shakespearean length show”.
Show Directors Annie Fletcher-Hall and Holly Parry are also taking a trip down memory lane as they are both former members of the youth theatre and many of the scenes within the show cover the years they were growing up within the group.
Since Jane’s retirement they have taken over the Directorship of the Youth Theatre and Holly Parry says: “As a former member of the youth theatre, it’s been incredible to see so many former generations’ memories brought to life. In the show there are fond memories I have of travelling to Latvia and Austria with CYT being re-enacted by our current members, there’s something really special and cyclical about the whole thing, particularly now I’m directing the show.”
Over the last forty years Central Youth Theatre who are based at Newhampton Arts Centre, has provided so many life changing opportunities for young people from across the City of Wolverhampton, and the impact it has had on their lives is reflected in the keen interest of those planning to attend.
Accompanying the weekend is a Saturday morning meet and greet afternoon for former and current members and an after-show celebratory party after the Saturday night show.
Tickets for the show are selling quickly but can still be purchased via the Youth Theatre website www.centralyouththeatre.org/whats-on/memories-in-a-shoebox/