The Youth Performance Partnership Fund (YPPF) has partnered with The Lowry to create a new access to the arts scheme – aimed at children and young people aged 8-18. The scheme will run for three years, aiming to broaden young people’s understanding of all the careers, on and off stage.

The Lowry are behind the creation of a new Local Cultural Education Partnership, linking community centres and schools together. Providing opportunities for children and young people to make, experience and participate in high quality theatre-making with co-creation at its heart. The programme will culminate in seven brand new shows; making up The Stage Directions Festival.

Lee Brennan, Manager of the Stage Directions scheme, said: “There is very little opportunity [nationally] for young people to learn and develop their skills, when learning the craft of backstage/ behind the scenes” and this scheme aims to provide an understanding of this industry, “A big part of the programme is supporting young people to understand the career opportunities which are available to them within the creative industries”.


Brennan went on to address the different Salford schools and communities involved in the scheme, saying: “this year we are working with Albion Academy, Build Hill, St George’s Church of England School, Lark Hill and the community settings are in partnership with Salford Community Leisure. The schools will change every year for the next three years”.

The scheme is part of a national funding scheme from the YPPF, focusing on 5 key areas: Croydon – Croydon Music and Arts; Derby – University of Derby Theatre; Salford – The Lowry Centre Trust; Medway – Medway Council Brook Theatre and Plymouth – Theatre Royal Plymouth. Through these 5 areas, the catchment group is going to be over 10,000 8-18 year olds.

The Lowry have partnered with some of the industries most prolific companies, Lee Brennan mentioned a few of these, “The young people have been working with some amazing companies over the past couple of months: Blind Summit, M6 Theatre, Action Transport Theatre, The Knotted Project and Skylight Circus just to name a few”

The schools are going to be indulging in On-Stage Ensembles, but alongside these there are further opportunities for the young people in Salford, called ‘Off-Stage Ensembles’. These will involve cohorts of youngsters who want to explore and develop skills in any of the areas focused on by The Lowry.

areas include, ‘Digital technology’: a scheme in collaboration with Salford University based on enhancing digital skills that could either support current theatre or the creation of new content. ‘Design and Fabrication’: working with outdoor arts agency, Walk the Plank, youngsters will learn the process of designing and building theatre in a dynamic and exciting way. ‘Technical Theatre’: children will work with The Lowry’s technical managers to learn more about the behind the scenes of theatre, like lighting, sound and stage management. Finally, ‘Producing’: youngsters will indulge in understanding what it takes to create and produce a successful piece of theatre.

To apply for these wonderful free weekend events, get in contact with The Lowry on their website:

Or their email:



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