NEWS: National Theatre of Scotland launches PLAY DATES – a new eight week online interactive programme for children and families

PLAY DATES  –  a new eight week online interactive programme for children and families

Produced by National Theatre of Scotland in association with Starcatchers and Imaginate

From 26 May 2020, Tuesday to Friday at 2pm, online.

National Theatre of Scotland in association with leading children’s arts organisations Starcatchers and Imaginate is connecting with families at home during the COVID crisis. A new digital Play Dates programme of online arts workshops and activities has been created specially for this ongoing period, whilst schools are off, offering children and young people, parents and carers online educational inspiration and theatrical home entertainment.

Launching on Tuesday 26 May 2020 at 2pm, Play Dates is an eight week digital programme of fun, interactive, participative and entertaining activities for children and their families created by some of Scotland’s leading creative practitioners and freelance artists.

From Tuesday to Friday over the next eight weeks, a new Play Dates workshop will be released every day on the National Theatre of Scotland website and social media channels for online audiences to access and take part in. All the activities are free. The Play Dates programme, which will continue to be developed, across the next few months, will include activities for all ages.

The Play Dates programme includes:

Weekly Activities

CONNECT, CREATE AND PLAY

Tuesday 26 May, 2, 9, 16 June 2020 at 2pm

Workshops by theatre artist Fraser MacLeod looking at creating tongue twisters, playing games online with friends and family and how to make your own stop motion film.

For ages 8 plus

STORIFY- how to create stories

Wednesday 27 May, 3, 10, 17, 24 June, 1, 8, 15 July 2020 at 2pm

An interactive video series about how to create and tell your own stories at home using imagination and everyday surroundings presented by theatre-makers Sarah Rose Graber and Ruxy Cantir.

For ages 5 plus.

GROW YOUR OWN GESAMTKUNSTWERK (GYOG!) – how to make a show in your house

Thursday 28 May, 4, 11, 18, 25 June, 2, 9, 16 July 2020 at 2pm

A video series about how to make a show in your house focusing on different areas of the arts created and presented by arts enthusiast Veronika Velvette, facilitated by Claire Eliza Willoughby and Rob Jones.

For ages 7 plus.

UNICORN DANCE PARTY

Friday 29 May, 5, 12, 19, 26 June, 3, 10, 17 July 2020 at 2pm

Also created by practitioners, Sarah Rose Graber and Ruxy Cantir, Unicorn Dance Party is an inclusive new video series about finding the joy within us. Everyone has an inner unicorn, but sometimes it takes a bit of dancing to bring it out.

For all ages.

EVERYTHING’S A MOVING PICTURE – how to set the scene with video

A week of workshops – 30 June, 1 July and 2 July 2020 at 11am

Workshops with leading Scottish theatre audio visual designer Lewis den Hertog using video to tell stories with “stock” and archive footage, making your own footage at home and being creative with text and subtitles to make shows more interesting for people who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing.

For ages 10 plus

This series celebrates and offers fee-based employment to a number of talented freelance artists, technicians and practitioners who work regularly behind the scenes on the creation of world-class Scottish theatre.

All the Play Dates videos will be hosted together on the National Theatre of Scotland website so families can catch up with all the activities. In addition, a selection of curated online resources, including artistic demonstration videos, relating to previous National Theatre of Scotland projects will be hosted online.

Further summer Play Dates activities will be announced over the coming weeks.

Jackie Wylie, Artistic Director, National Theatre of Scotland says

“Scotland has a brilliant community of theatre-makers and creative practitioners who are unable to make theatre on our stages during these challenging times.

We have commissioned this Play Dates series, alongside leading children’s theatre organisations, Starcatchers and Imaginate, to enable a group of facilitators to share their unique talents and skills with children and families at home. We hope to offer creative inspiration and high quality entertainment to children as well as fun for all the family to take part in whilst the schools are closed”

Rhona Matheson, Chief Executive of Starcatchers says

We’re delighted to be working with National Theatre of Scotland to help develop a Digital Play Dates programme that includes some fantastic arts experiences designed especially for families with babies and younger children.

We’ve seen so many examples over the past few weeks of young children and their families’ wonderful capacity for creativity. We hope Play Dates will help bring more inspiration, magic and joy – particularly on those tough days – remembering that it’s the process that matters. All of the experiences will allow children to explore the world around them, develop curiosity and imagination and, most importantly, provide opportunities for connection.”

Paul Fitzpatrick, Chief Executive, Imaginate

Imaginate is really proud of this association with the National Theatre of Scotland and Starcatchers on Play Dates. As well as offering new artistic experiences for children and families to inspire their imagination and exercise their emotions, Play Dates will also create new, paid work for artists in Scotland. Imaginate’s Ideas Fund Projects has already reached thousands of children so we’re excited to reach even more children with Play Dates.”

#playdates #playathome

nationaltheatrescotland.com/playdates

PLAY DATES PROGRAMME

Connect, Create and Play – Tuesdays at 2pm (4 weeks)

A series of videos by theatre artist Fraser MacLeod with games and exercises to do at home and suggestions on how to connect with friends online and have fun together, through platforms such as Skype, Zoom WhatsApp and Facetime. The series will look at how to get your voice working, creating your own unique tongue twister, playing games online with friends and family and how to create stories and share them by making your own stop motion movie.

How to Create a Stop Motion Movie (26 May); How to Create Your Own Tongue Twister (2 June); Play Online with Family & Friends. With Jack & Max edition (9 June); Play Online with Family & Friends. With Jack, Max, Grandma and Clare (16 June).  For ages 8 plus

Storify  – how to create stories – Wednesdays at 2pm (8 weeks)

Theatre makers Sarah Rose Graber and Ruxy Cantir lead a series of interactive videos about how to create and tell stories at home. Imaginations will be unleashed and stories created from everyday surroundings. From using different story structures and bringing characters to life to discovering new and exciting ways to engage with the objects at home, each new episode will result in at least one original tale to share with friends and family. For ages 5 plus

Grow Your Own Gesamtkunstwerk (GYOG!)how to make a show in your house – Thursdays at 2pm (8 weeks)

A video series about how to make a show at home. Each episode focuses on a different area of the arts, building up each week, so that by the end of the series, you have all the ingredients to make a piece of theatre to be performed in your own home. Created and presented by Glasgow based arts enthusiast Veronika Velvette. Facilitated by Claire Eliza Willoughby and Rob Jones, GYOG! is also supported by Snap – Elastic. For ages 7 plus

Unicorn Dance Party  – Fridays at 2pm (8 weeks)

An inclusive new video series from Sarah Rose Graber and Ruxy Cantir about finding the joy within us. Everyone has an inner unicorn, but sometimes it takes a bit of dancing to bring it out! Join Melody and Luna as they celebrate what makes us unique by groovin’ around our homes. Each episode will highlight different, fun ways to move our bodies and uncover inspiration from the spaces and materials around us. So pop on some sweet tunes because there’s a party around every corner and a bit of unicorn magic inside all of us!  For children, young people and families of all ages.

Everything’s A Moving Picture – how to set the scene with video (3 daily sessions)

A series of three video workshops created by leading Scottish theatre audio visual designer Lewis den Hertog which look at how to approach using video to help tell stories. The videos will explore ways you can do this with “stock” and archive footage (footage that already exists), interesting ways for young people to make footage at home and how you can be creative with text and subtitles to make shows more interesting for people who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing. For ages 10 plus

Where to watch PLAY DATES

nationaltheatrescotand.com/playdates

www.facebook.com/NationalTheatreScotland

www.youtube.com/NTSOnline

Image: John Moore