Old Vic Theatre for Young People in London

The Old Vic is a gateway to a world of creative, social and employment opportunities in the theatre. World renowned, The Old Vic today leads the way for the next generation of theatre-goers and theatre-makers as it has done for almost 200 years. Whether your interest is in theatre on or off stage, in broadening your creative imagination, or simply learning how to communicate better in an interview, this is where futures begin.

Whether it be a creative business, a side project or if you’re simply interested in working for yourself. We know you’ll be leaving more inspired, knowledgeable and that one step closer to reaching your entrepreneurial potential.

Our day-long Careers Festival in partnership with ERIC FEST is open to young people aged 16-25. This interactive and immersive festival will offer creative workshops, networking opportunities, panel discussions with industry professionals and a chance to find out more about jobs in the creative industries and beyond.

Our highly successful creative practitioner programme is for young people aged 18+, offering advanced hands-on experience in creative facilitation and the chance to develop key transferable skills.

Over 12 sessions, you will experience practical facilitation training from The Old Vic Education & Outreach team and guest creative practitioners as you learn about different workshop delivery practices.

Areas of training will include: communication and presentation, leadership, Practical facilitation skills, writing and creating workshop plans, behaviour management, CV and interview skills.

This free programme will help you hone your own delivery style and build your own toolkit of techniques and exercises. Your training will end with you experiencing life as a professional facilitator, as you devise and deliver your own workshop alongside your fellow Front Line Facilitators. All facilitators will be paid a fee for their final workshops.

Acting Games and Drama Exercises to Develop Focus

As long recognized, acting games develop important skills required for acting and performing, but also vital tools for everyday life at work and socially. The games described below have been designed to develop focus of the participants.

Me to You is a really simple exercise for a large group which encourages connection and focus. It requires students to be hyperaware and really focus. Get your group into a circle.The person starting must make eye contact with someone else in the circle (working across the circle is best).They then must gesture to themselves and say “me” followed by a gesture at the other person in which they say: “to you”. It should seamless.If you are targeted you then accept the offer and continue in the same way to a new person in the circle. Once this has gone around the circle a few times, lose the words and get your students to simply use gesture and eye contact.If they are successful at this then drop the gesture and simply use eye contact.

Word Association with Clicks is a game played by professional theatre companies, and can also work really well with late primary and high school kids. Get your group into a circle. Firstly, teach your students the rhythm which they will make with their bodies: thigh slap, clap, then click (right hand), click (left hand). Get the group comfortable with this rhythm.

When clicking with the right hand the student whose turn it is must say the persons before them’s word and then a new word that associates with that word when clicking with the left hand. The next person in the circle (work in a clockwise motion) must do the same. They must repeat the last persons word with the right click and then think of a new word when they click with the left hand. The thigh slap and clap gives the game a steady rhythm and stops students panicking. Continue this until you have done a few successful laps around the circle.

More Games to Improve Acting Skills and Imagination

The Machine of Emotions is a mechanism in your imagination, composed of elements associated with the desired emotion. Take one emotion “anger”, then take a sheet of paper and write down situations that make you angry. For example, noisy neighbours, strict parents, a lot of homework, wrong haircut, etc. With every situation you need to come up with some image. 

Then, you connect together these images and at the end you will have the “machine of anger.” Do the same thing with many other emotions and when you need to act them, you can always take this “machine” and recall all of those images that make you angry, happy, irritated etc. These images will help you quickly get the desired emotion.

The Non-Stop Monologue. In this exercise you will have to present a monologue on some topic for 3 to 5 minutes without any stops or time for preparation. You should try to avoid any pauses and your speech should sound like you’ve been preparing it for a long time. 
At first choose the topics you are familiar with, then move on to the once that you hardly know anything about. This exercise will help you to develop you skills of improvisation.

Stroking an Animal. This exercise should be done in a group, so take your friends and give everyone a sheet of paper with the list of animals in it (cat, elephant, hamster, dog and so on). Each of the participants chooses an animal he/she likes and imagines holding and stoking it. The task of other participants is to guess which animal it is. This exercise is often used in drama classes for beginners.