National Saturday Club and The Clore Duffield Foundation are delighted to be working in partnership to launch the Performance&Theatre Saturday Club in 2023.
Four Clubs will be established for the 2023–24 academic year hosted by St Mary’s University Twickenham, Gateshead College and Roundhouse in collaboration with The Place. We plan to expand the programme, to ten Clubs across the UK by 2025–26.
This new Saturday Club programme aims to create opportunities for 13–16-year-olds nationwide to explore, create and engage with performance-based work within universities, further education colleges and some of our most loved theatres and cultural spaces.
Through the Performance&Theatre programme, young people from all backgrounds will have the chance to celebrate and explore the breadth of the sector across applied theatre, physical theatre, dance, vocal training, performance, and acting techniques, as well as production elements such as set and costume design. Club members will also develop their leadership skills, exploring roles within the sector such as directing and producing.
The National Saturday Club programme is free and open to 13–16-year-olds of all abilities. Weekly classes will be led by professional tutors from the universities, colleges and cultural organisations hosting the Clubs. Club members will also take part in Masterclasses with industry professionals, visits to museums, theatres and galleries, an end-of-year Summer Show, and Graduation Ceremonies.
The Performance&Theatre programme will enhance cultural learning and support the development of future leaders within the arts sector. Links will be made to careers and study pathways, broadening young people’s awareness of professional opportunities across theatre, design, and performance.
Lucy Kennedy, Chief Executive of the National Saturday Club said: “We are delighted to be partnering with The Clore Duffield Foundation to launch the Performance&Theatre Saturday Club programme. This new Club subject will enable young people from all backgrounds to explore the breadth of the performing arts sector, providing valuable opportunities for them to access theatre and performance spaces and to make visible the possibilities open to them. We look forward to expanding the programme nationwide over the next three years, working in partnership with further education, higher education and the cultural sector.”
Kate Bellamy, Director at Clore Duffield Foundation said: “The Clore Duffield Foundation is working with the National Saturday Club to ensure more young people experience the inspiration, confidence and joy that theatre and performance can bring. Background should be no barrier to advancement in the performing arts, careers in the cultural sector should be open to all. We hope the new Performance&Theatre programme will mean more young people can enjoy and create great art.”
The National Saturday Club now offers eight subjects: Art&Design, Fashion&Business, Film&Media, Performance&Theatre, Science&Engineering, Society&Change, Writing&Talking; and Craft&Making.
With a particular focus on engaging young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and underrepresented communities, who would not otherwise have these opportunities, the National Saturday Club’s established model has proven impact.