Young Shakespeare Company

Young Shakespeare Company

On Tuesday 5 March pupils from Years 5 and 6 at CCJS were given the opportunity to take part in a drama workshop with the Young Shakespeare Company (YSC). The YSC is a London-based touring education theatre company specialising in performing Shakespeare’s plays for young people in schools and theatres all around the country. 

The morning was focused on the play ‘Julius Caesar’, with the professional actors telling the story and encouraging the pupils to act out sections. All pupils were encouraged to get involved, not just in acting out individual parts but in learning how to create sound effects and atmosphere. The cast dressed up in various full costumes throughout and used an array of props to give the pupils the full acting experience. It is an ideal way to bring Shakespeare alive to the pupils and to open them up to the language and imagery used within his plays. 

We are incredibly lucky at CCJS in that the YSC come to us twice a year to run such workshops; they have been doing this for over eight years now.  Previous plays have included Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Macbeth. 

Mrs Jill Douglas, Head of Drama at CCJS, said; “We were delighted to welcome YSC back to CCJS. With a cast of just five professional actors, they swept the children through the emotions and lives of Shakespeare's characters with energy, passion and above all, fun. The children were inspired by the workshop and it was a real pleasure to see how much their performances developed throughout the morning.” 

 Pupil comments: 

“It was really entertaining and I learnt how important it is to project your voice and face the audience.” Saxon Year 6  

“I loved the effects when they were stabbing themselves, it was really realistic and showed me how to act out really dramatic bits” Jessica Year 6 

“The actors were really realistic and weren’t embarrassed about what they were doing which gave me the confidence to perform in front of people.” Jago Year 6  

“I really liked the way that the actors got everyone involved in the story and in acting out bits – we all got to perform.” Megan Year 6 

"My favourite part of the play was when the soothsayer told Caesar "Beware the Ides of March" because it was intense and scary." Theo Year 5  

"I loved how there was always betrayal going on which gave the story the feeling of uncertainty and mystery." Megan Year 6   

"I really enjoyed how you had to work things out as the story went along." Molly Year 5  

"At the end the lights were turned off and we had to pretend to fight each other in slow motion. It was really dramatic and we all got to join in." William Year 6  

 "The actors were brilliant and so realistic." Kate Year 6

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