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Our Young Actors Company & Elder Community Groups Will Work Together in 2022/23

Term has got off to a fantastic start and exciting plans are afoot for this coming year. We have welcomed back all three Acts to New Wimbledon Theatre and they’re having great fun getting to know each other, building the ensemble and starting to explore possibilities for their performances. In an exciting development for 2023, we are combining their work with Merton Plays, our workshops for older people too. 

This year sees us revisiting and developing our previous intergenerational work, this time partnering with Alzheimer’s Society and Commonside Community Development Trust.

Merton Plays sessions are hosted at the Merton Dementia Hub and New Horizon Centre. They present an opportunity for older people in the borough to get together on a weekly basis to be creative and find moments of self expression using storytelling, poetry, music and movement.   

Throughout the year Merton Plays and Young Actors Company will be meeting and working together in various ways. Our young members will be learning about creating dementia friendly performances and working on their skills with a series of masterclasses in vocal and movement techniques. They will craft productions for New Wimbledon Theatre Studio based around the themes of traditional stories and memory, our Merton Plays groups will be invited to attend with complimentary tickets. From Jan ’23 some of our Young Actors will also be invited to volunteer at our Merton Plays groups, forging relationships with older members of the community and taking part in their activities. As you can see below, research has already begun with members of our Young Actors Company attending Morden Hall Park Fun Palace in role as scientific researchers. They collected memories in exchange for a fact about memory.

Scientific researchers attend Morden Hall Park Fun Palace

All of this exciting work will culminate in our groups performing at an inter-generational arts sharing in July 2023 watched by their friends, family and general public.

For more updates on how our projects are progressing and information about the performances throughout the year, be sure to follow us on our social media channels or sign up to our newsletter. You are also welcome to come to our free Season’s Launch event on 3rd November at New Wimbledon Theatre. It is a chance to learn more about the charity, meet some of our young people and find out more ways to get involved!