Super Fun Acting Games

Acting games are a fantastic tool. They help students get comfortable, warmed up and focused. Acting games also develop important skills required for acting and performing.

Stuck in the Mud is a quite a well known game that isn’t necessarily related to acting; however, it is a lot of fun and gets students moving and in a good mood. Choose one person to be “tagger”. If you have a large group 20+ get two or three people to be the taggers. If you are tagged you must stay still and outstretch your legs and arms, like in a star jump. The goal is for the taggers to have the whole group stationary (stuck in the mud). Those who are not taggers can free the others who are stuck by going under their legs. End the game when either the taggers have got everyone or you can see your students starting to tire. Let a few different students be taggers.

Build the Robot is a really easy game that can be fun for all ages. It encourages team work and creativity. One person from the group must stand on stage and make a repetitive gesture. You can also have students add a sound to their movement. Another student jumps up and does a different repetitive gesture. Continue this until all the students have added to the “robot”. The students must maintain their original gesture and the goal is to create an interesting and diverse looking robot.


Youth theatre provides a lifeline to young people looking for somewhere to express themselves

Regional youth theatres are often the first point of training for performers, theatremakers and backstage crew. They foster a love of theatre in thousands of young people every year, offering a place where everyone, no matter their background, is accepted and welcomed. They break down social barriers and show young people from all walks of life that their voice matters.

These companies tend to attract a wide variety of members as they keep fees low, normally between £40-£70 for a 10 to 12-week term, and places are available on a non-audition basis. The majority accept everyone regardless of talent, special needs or finances. It’s this inclusive attitude that makes the tapestry of the professional theatre world more diverse. Many people working in the industry from non-affluent backgrounds attribute their success to youth theatre.

Benjamin Purkiss, currently playing Captain Macheath in Theatre des Bouffes du Nord’s overseas tour of The Beggar’s Opera, believes the work he did at Ashford Youth Theatre in Kent changed him as a young actor. “I started at age 15 working on Shakespeare and classics and moved on to Pinter and more modern texts,” he explains. “It was an exceptional education for working-class actors who otherwise wouldn’t touch that kind of text until drama school, if they could afford it.”

There are many youth theatres across the country doing outstanding work. Ben Humphrey, associate director of the Swan Youth Theatre in Worcester, says: “We don’t look to create child actors, but to provide an inclusive, safe and creative environment in which young people can explore their abilities through a shared love of theatre. There are many professionals who have started their career with the Swan Youth Theatre and gone on to make their professional debuts with the Worcester Repertory Company or into further training. One of the most notable of our alumni is Rufus Norris, currently director of the National Theatre.”

Youth theatres train young people for a career in theatre, but they also go further. Dale Rooks, director of Chichester Festival Youth Theatre, explains: “Our young people often describe CFYT as a family and a place where they can be themselves, develop confidence and self-esteem. In addition to acquiring knowledge and theatre skills, many of them value youth theatre as a place where they feel they develop vital transferrable life skills.”