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Spotlites Youth Theatre

What you say about us!

Our Youth Theatre

'The time I've spent with Spotlites over the last year or so has been a big help and a boost to prepare me for further education. I am very very thankful with what you have taught me, because if it wasn't for you I wouldn't be the way I am with acting today. You have helped me achieve some amazing grades in school with the skills you have taught me!!' - Jake

The BFG by our Children's Theatre

'I would just like to say that we thoroughly enjoyed The BFG. It was really great to see the younger members get their chance to shine. There are some really talented children that were cast in the show. We ended up seeing it twice. Jamie has really enjoyed doing this show and he's coming away with a lot more confidence in performing to an audience. He now wants to audition for a singing role in the next musical which is a big step up for him as he wouldn't have had the courage to do so before this show.' - Mrs H.



'Adults Drama'

'I'd like to thank [the tutor] for making the recent adult drama sessions so enjoyable. He obviously has a real passion and enthusiasm for what he does. The lessons were very well planned and structured ... I for one thoroughly enjoyed myself each week and learnt that there is far more to acting than just standing in front of a camera or on stage saying a few lines' - Louise



Aida the musical by Spotlites Youth Theatre

'This is absolutely fantastic! Really choked me up reading it. Congratulations to you all. Jo x'
Click here to read the review she is talking about



The BFG by our Children's Theatre

'I must say I feel so proud of all involved, it was an absolutely brilliant production!!' Liane (Christopher's mum)



The BFG

'We just want to let you know how much we enjoyed the show last night. It was fantastic! This has been our favourite so far, it was superb! The cast also seem to be having a great time too, we know because they have been on such a high this week' - Mr & Mrs M.



Aida the musical by our Youth Theatre

'From working on Aida more than any other show, I have learnt to appreciate truth both in my performance as well as for the audience. During this project I got into the mindset of Radames and began to experience what he experiences. Now I need to work on my technique so I can convey what's going on in my mind externally to create a more real story for the audience, which I find difficult' - Luke



'Drama'

'Abigail absolutely adores coming to Spotlites and comes home so happy every week. Please pass on to all the staff at Spotlites that we think they do an amazing job'

'Zombie Prom'

I think that 'Zombie Prom' has been the best show I have been in since I joined Spotlites. It was so much fun and every single person in the cast was brilliant, although none of us could do it without the great help of our director, choreographer, band and technicians.

I played a part in the company, I think it helped me develop characterisation, and to be able to put some emotion into my character. My favourite scene was the TV studio, 'Come join us' and 'How can I say goodbye'. This was my favourite because 'Come join us' it gave me a great chance to put a lot of energy and characterisation into a dance. I enjoyed 'How can I say goodbye' because I was able to watch how different people made their characters work and I could learn of this.

'Zombie Prom' was a great experience and has given me a lot of memories.

T (aged 15)



And I just came because my mate went...

I had always enjoyed performing whether it was playing the class clown, or doing the karaoke on holiday, you know the usual things that any normal kid does, but I had never really thought about acting until a good friend of mine told me about the acting group he went to on Tuesdays, 'Spotlites'.

He seemed very eager, taking delight in telling me how much fun he had doing a production of 'Fantastic Mr Fox'. Figuring this sounded like good fun I signed up. Ironically he left a couple of weeks before I started, but I was still eager.

For my first half a year I was in the Junior Youth Theatre, but I was one of the eldest in the group and just on the cusp of the Youth Theatre. It was great fun, and being one of the eldest I had few insecurities, but it wasn't until I moved up into the Youth Theatre that not only did my feelings change, but so to did I as a person.

When I saw the quality and devotion that the members of the Youth Theatre possessed I must admit my heart sank.
I felt I had been thrown in the deep end not knowing how to swim. They were all so confident, so full of energy, so big! How would I ever fit in? So far it had just been a bit of fun for me, now it was about acting. Now this is not to say that the Junior Youth Theatre is any less serious in it's own right, it's just I wasn't.

For the first sessions I was paranoid that I was being judged, but I was soon introduced to the major characteristics that I believe 'Spotlites' excels in bringing out in people. Respect and maturity. Never once was there an unkind comment or a sense of intimidation.

It was evident that this was something very different to any other group I had attended like football or cubs, this was an open friendly environment which brought out the best in people, not only as actors, but as people.
Within a few weeks I already felt like an established member of this unique family.

After a year or so I started singing lessons (remember the karaoke), to find it was taught with the same level of excellence that the drama was, while still retaining the same welcoming and friendly feel. I did my first showcase soon after that (definitely the best way to gain your first practical performance experience), and then my first show 'Jesus Christ Superstar'.

Through doing a show I can honestly say all aspects of my acting and performing improved ten fold as you learn so much from the excellent, professional directing that comes from Rachel, but also from your fellow cast members who become like a second family.

It was not only my acting I noticed improved, but me as a person. 'Spotlites' had a positive input into all aspects of my personality but undoubtedly the greatest was on my social skills and confidence. To name but one example of this would be this year when I was given the position of Deputy Head Boy at my school, a post that was partially due to academic merit but mainly through an interview with the Heads of the school.

I am now preparing to go to University to study 'Media Practice and Theory' but I can honestly say I wouldn't be where I am today as a person were it not for the massive impact that Spotlites has had on my life. After being a part of 'Spotlites' family for five years I realise that the kind of things I gained and people I met through 'Spotlites' will always be a part of me, and be one of those rarest of things; an aspect of my life I will always remember with a smile on my face.

Michael D


And from someone else ....

To sum up what Spotlites does and offers is not the easiest task in the world; in fact it’s nigh on impossible so perhaps the best way to do it is to explain my own experiences with them.

Some thirteen years ago I was introduced to Spotlites by mere chance, I was shy, quiet and slightly retiring (anybody who knows me now would probably have a hard time imagining that). Yet I had a wish to act, I started to attend Spotlites Children’s sessions on Wednesday evenings back in the days of them being held at the Brook Theatre, from the first session I was hooked. I couldn’t get enough of it, for the first time I felt as if I could be who I was.

Within weeks the shy tall kid with the posh accent had become the outspoken always chipping in his two pence worth tall kid with the posh voice. The thing that stunned me at that time though was although only a child Rachel never once treated me or any other member as anything less than an adult as long as you were willing to learn.

During my time I was involved in a variety of shows from Barnum (which was already well underway when I first became part of the Spotlites family) to Annie (and my first huge role as Rooster, it was daunting but satisfying) and Into the Woods (the first Amateur production) to name only a few, although to call these production Amateur seems almost unfair as the amount of time, work and dedication that gets put into them from the Lead Cast, Chorus, Rachel, Colin and everybody in between is nothing short of professional.

When I was fourteen/fifth teen I was forced to leave Spotlites against my own choosing and it was one of the hardest things for me to do, I wasn’t just leaving a group of people who had so much talent it was unnerving I was leaving people that I had come to think of as my second family. However regardless of that two/three years later I returned and although some of the faces had changed as had the location it felt as if I had never left. Unfortunately due to a change of personal circumstances I once again had to leave, but I still hold on to all that I had learnt from Rachel and my peers at Spotlites.

Spotlites truly does allow people to open up not only as performers but as people and the effects it has on these people is positive to say the least. I have but one regret, I now live in Glossop Derbyshire which means I have no way to return to Spotlites once again, however If they ever wished to do a tour up here they’d have free bed and board.

Stuart R

And another ....

I just thought that I may send you a little note in appreciation for the time that I spent with you and the company.
Firstly, I can without hesitation say that your method of teaching was so revolutionary. I think it's brilliant the way your work branches from centuries of experience. It opened me up within the first few sessions. I think you and I both realised that and my possible potential in the group. I never found such a fantastic outlet for all of my interior troubles and feelings.

I sincerely enjoyed nearly every moment that I spent with you, and I say nearly because I have aquired possibly a few too many scrapes and bangs from many a session and exercise. I came to Spotlites to explore the realms of theatre and in all honesty I was really not ready for what was about to be thrown at me. Having said this, I accepted the challenge and you really pushed me to places and points I thought I could never reach. From this my confidence has improved greatly and this in turn has helped me in many areas, socially and academically. I gained a lot of experience and knowledge that I was captivated by every session. It will stay with me for a very long time I'm sure.

Thank you for all your hard work. It's amazing what you can do with just one individual. Please continue to the benefit of all those in your care.

Maria T

And yet another ....

My years at Spotlites have been some of the most memorable that I could ever have hoped to experience.
I have grown as a person, sharing friendships and establishing newfound talents that have helped me to become confident in myself.
I have had so mush fun and fond memories, through the people I have met, the experiences that I have been through and the plays that I have had the pleasure in being in.
Whenever I think of Spotlites I shall remember the fun that I have had and the lessons that I have learnt and I shall never forget the confidence that I have been lucky enough to acquire over the years.

I am truly grateful and shall never forget the times that I have had.

Love Chloe

And yet another ....

I would like to inform you that I believe Hollie has benefited deeply from her drama sessions and she has become much more confident as a result.

Last one ....

Spotlites has given me so much and you have given me my confidence, and a space to grow up without fear of reprisals from others. I wouldn't be the woman I am now without Spotlites or you, so thank you. I know attending sessions have helped me get over a few deaths in my family during my time I've been with Spotlites.

I am eternally grateful to have been a part of Spotlites for so long and to have been a part of so many productions and showcases. Thank you for giving me a chance and letting me stay for so long, I hope I have not disappointed you too much.

Through being a part of Spotlites I have chosen my career. I am currently studying to become a theatre technician, something I would never have thought of it if I hadn't been to so many productions. Please thank Colin for me, for making it look so easy and something I could manage to do.

I will miss you and Spotlites so much, and will always look back on my time there with pride. I hope to be able to come back and watch some shows but it depends on my schedule.

Thank you so much again. Love H


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