Ryan Wardle talks about his rehearsals with our Youth Theatre

As I have been involved in the Youth Theatre rehearsal sessions since near the beginning, I have a unique insight into the way the piece has evolved, from two basic scripts into fully separate thought-provoking masterpieces.

At first, with the I Am England sessions, I thought that the sheer size of the cast would prove to be an issue, but the determination of both the young people and the team working to support them has proved me wrong, with each member of the sessions fully devoting their time and attention to the piece.

As for the cast of Spoonface Steinberg - I have never seen so many ideas thrown about in such a short piece of time, with brainstorming sessions turning into fully composed scenes within a matter of hours. With so much to keep track of I feel the directors of each production have done an exceptional job in developing their respective pieces to a point where each piece is fully developed and distinguishable in its own right.

Rehearsals have been challenging, as I didn’t know that the groups would not be able to rehearse on the set until the week of their performance. With this in mind the rehearsal process has been even more impressive to me as someone who initially came in as an outsider and was unaware of the usual stages of the rehearsal process.

I Am England by David Lane explores a post-Europe Britain, written over five years ago but now strikingly relevant. With the country at war and barely enough rations to go around, how will both the British public and those in power go about getting the country back on track?

Spoonface Steinberg by Lee Hall is a play that explores multiple life-changing situations, with a girl that has autism facing an all too real terminal illness. Told through the eyes of Spoonface, this play explores the world in a truly unique way, thinking about not only how these things can change a person’s life but also how that person then views the world.

Ryan Wardle, Plus One Apprentice

I Am England & Spoonface Steinberg runs from Thursday 28 - Saturday 30 July. Click here for more information.