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It’s a wrap!

After a year of fun, success, change and challenge, we’d like to thank the people who made it possible.

When we launched our 2019-2020 season last September, we could have never – in our wildest imaginings – guessed where this year would take us. Like every other community group going through the knock-on impact of the pandemic, we’ve experienced troubles and tears at times, but above all, WCTT’s Young Actors Company has proved that it is resilient, optimistic and creative.

This turbulent and hugely rewarding year has brought us closer to the community, introduced us to a much wider audience, and brought technique and technology into our work that we’ll continue to use in the years ahead.

But none of it would have been possible without the generous and heartfelt contribution of our sponsors and supporters.

The Taylor Family Foundation has been our core funder for many years. Ian Taylor personally supported and advocated for WCTT from our early days and we were very sad to hear of his passing after several years of illness. Our deepest thanks go to the Taylor Family for always believing in the community led and life changing work we do.

At the start of the year, we were thrilled to receive funding from Arts Council England that allowed us to perform Twist! on the main stage of New Wimbledon Theatre. We reached a huge audience of young people from primary schools across the borough and were blown away by Act Two’s talent and confidence on the big stage.

When we went into lockdown, like so many other arts organisations, we were forced to change the way we work and perform. We were delighted to receive emergency funding from the Wimbledon Foundation and Merton Giving. These generous contributions helped us to fund our summer programme and to keep the company going during the pandemic.

Thanks to the Tesco Bags of Help funding we secured last year, we were able to continue our cross-generational project, Living Memory, by producing an online Lockdown Cabaret to send out to residential care homes across the borough. We hope it will bring some light relief and entertainment to those who have been so badly affected by this year’s events.

And when we start a new term in September, we will be able to provide technical support to our young actors thanks to the fantastic work of Keep Kids Connected, which has supplied us with five laptops.

We’d like to extend our thanks to Safestore Wimbledon who have provided three years of support by keeping our props and costumes safe, and the iconic Jack Petchey Foundation, sponsors of our Outstanding Contribution Awards.

Finally, the biggest, warmest thanks to our tough, talented and triumphant young actors, who make all this worthwhile, their families and friends (who lived through many weeks of Sunday rehearsals under their own roofs), our dependable and always-on creative, admin and social teams, and our trustees: we did it, guys

After our final online audition workshop on Sunday August 23, the company will take a short summer break. Then we’ll be back to work on Sunday September 13 with new (and existing) members, a packed programme of activities and events and a great big, collective smile.

Until then, we wish everybody a safe and restorative summer break.