Becoming a Young Creator

Getting hands-on experience in a working theatre can be difficult. Through Young Creators, 14 - 25 year olds are able to gain invaluable insights into life as a theatre professional in our free vocational training scheme. We spoke to Young Creators alumni Christopher Marsh to find out more. 

Why did you decide to become a Young Creator?

I decided to become a Young Creator because it was the perfect opportunity for me to become involved with the work of Chickenshed after an already ongoing desire to work with the company. I had always known about Chickenshed since my secondary school years at Ashmole Academy, hearing about it through friends, and passing the theatre in the car or on the bus, always wondering how on Earth I can perform there some day. I had already graduated from University of Hertfordshire and working professionally as an actor by the time I came across the Young Creator's Programme on the company's website. As I came under the 16-25 bracket, I just had to enquire, and sometime after an interview with Jelena Budimir, I was accepted and later found myself finally on the Chickenshed stage among other like-minded artists.

What experiences have you gained through Young Creators?

Through the scheme, I have had many wonderful experiences, both creatively and socially. If it was not for this scheme, I would not have met new collaborators for both stage and screen projects that I am now currently working on. Specific experiences include improving and further developing my stagecraft, with also a greater awareness of just how important text is when creating and telling a story. It is delightful enough to bring a play or piece of theatre to life by being informed by the script or story, but it is further reading between the lines and always referring back to the text piece, and always asking questions about it or finding out what it is really saying; Messages, commentary, relevance, why are we telling this story? etc. It is highlighting these that really contributes to finding the truths that the text is exploring. So this scheme has been a real eye-opener to the psychology and thought processes that one must consider when approaching a text, later informing emotion, movement and overall performance.

What were your highlights?

My highlights would be having the opportunity to collaborate and work with some of the most talented and passionate people I have come to know. Whether it be exploring a piece of text and bringing it to life through movement, song, or dialogue, or exploring new writing and creating new stories for the stage. E.g. 'Pandora's Box', a new play conceived and written by Grace Tims, which was then workshopped, rehearsed and performed in the Studio Theatre.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of becoming a Young Creator?

Not to be afraid of sharing ideas. If you have an idea, I encourage you to write it down, as it could be the next story waiting to be told.

My further advice would be to always remember that we are all storytellers and that the only way stories can be told is with others. Young Creators is that further opportunity from Chickenshed to be yourself and to be yourself among others who share the same passion and love for stories. 

Learn more about becoming a Young Creator