It’s been a pretty eventful week for all of us here at Rendered Retina and we have had the pleasure of supervising workshops for young people. It was extremely rewarding for us to see skills being passed on to the next generation of performers but it brought up a very interesting issue, one that can’t possibly be answered in a single post. You may hear us mention our disappointment at the clear attacks from the government on the arts in educational establishments; these posts aim to highlight the benefits of having lessons and access to drama and theatre.
What was very clear to me, whilst observing workshops this week, was that these young people spent a lot of time in groups, interacting, socialising and being creative. They were aware that they were in a safe environment, where they don’t have to be afraid of being themselves, where their ideas will be heard and listened to (no matter how crazy they may seem).
We think back to school and talk of how irrelevant learning Pythagoras’ Theorem was when we will never need to calculate the longest side of a triangle in the working world. No one really seems to talk about time spent in drama and all the skills it has taught us, skills you use every day when you leave. Teamwork is an essential part of any job that you will apply for (how many CVs have the line ‘I am great at working in a team’ in them?) and group-work is something included in virtually all drama lessons.
When given 10 minutes to come up with a simple 30 second scene we can be thrust into a group of 4 or 5 others who we don’t usually associate with. 10 minutes very quickly seems like no time at all and before we realise it all nerves and prejudice are put aside as the group has a common goal (even if this is not looking silly in front of the rest of the class). This was something I failed to notice whilst being a student and only now, when I see workshops as an outside eye, do I see young people working together as one.
So whenever I, or any of you that are reading this, hear someone agree with the attacks and cuts that the arts are currently facing you can direct them to this mini-series of blogs. This isn’t for my own good, I am writing this having had the intention of doing so for a long time, this is for all of us. To make sure that the next generation don’t miss out on essential skills, skills that any and every job requires. Stay tuned for the next post on this subject and remember…
Keep it clean. Keep it comic.