A new generation of young theatre critics will be putting their reviewing and writing skills to the test in the exciting arena of outdoor arts. They will be let loose at this year’s Hat Fair (3-5 July) and will have exclusive access to interview the artists and performers.
As part of the three day event the Young Critics will be offered professional development with prolific blogger Megan Vaughan, who writes as Churlish Meg. They will also meet critics from the National Association of Street Arts.
All reviews will be uncensored and uploaded to a blog that Megan has created especially for the event.
Megan Vaughan adds: “The Young Critics Scheme from the Theatre Royal is new, but it’s going from strength-to-strength already. It’s fantastic that those opportunities are being rolled out for the young people at Hat Fair too, meaning they’ll get experience of responding to work in an intensive, festival environment. I’m looking forward to supporting them through the whole weekend but, to be honest, I’m mostly excited about reading all the brilliance they come up with!”
Young Critics is a scheme for under 25s aimed at inspiring a new generation of theatre critics to stimulate interest in performance, run by Theatre Royal Winchester and A Younger Theatre. So far participants have been mentored by journalist heavyweights Lyn Gardner, Catherine Love, Mark Shenton, Natasha Tripney, and supported by Jake Orr, founder of A Younger Theatre.
Scheme founder and organiser Carl Woodward commented: “”Reviews and coverage are a critical part of the creative process. We are thrilled that our young reviewers can feed in to the debate around outdoor arts and respond to a diverse range of performances, from headline acts, to pop-up-performances and unconventional hatters. The extension of this project into Hat Fair says a lot about the importance of critical writing, and encourages more coverage responding to the surprise and playfulness of the outdoor and street arts sector.”