We are delighted to celebrate International Youth Day in the Creative Learning Department here at the Lyric. Everything we do centres around young people and their participation in the arts.
Today we are finishing up our third week of a four week Summer School programme for young people aged 6-18 who are interested in theatre and arts. We encourage young people no matter what experience level or knowledge to come along and give it a try.
This year’s theme ‘Ulster Innovators’ allowed imaginations to fly while learning something new. The focus was very much on local people who have made an impact in the world of science, art, medicine and more. Our facilitators are in agreement that the Summer School should be a forum where young people can gather and discuss the issues that affect them and empower them to make change in their lives and the lives of others. The young people were inspired to create very different work but across the board we saw a huge interest in making theatre and art around the message of sustainability and protecting the environment- very much in keeping with the theme for this year’s International Youth day: “Green Skills for Youth; Towards a Sustainable world”. One of our teams even made their own invention to reduce carbon emissions and during their show invited their parents and guardians to invest!
The message of sustainability has been embedded in our Summer School for several years. In fact last year’s theme was The World Around Us and the focus was very much on how we can protect our wonderful planet. In recent years we have made it our mission to not buy anything new for our drama/ art sessions! Marta Dyczkowska and Clinton Kirkpatrick our art Facilitators worked with found and recycled materials in all art workshops. This meant that while young people are learning art techniques they are also learning how to think about recycling and repurposing objects for art creations.
At the Lyric we aim to spark creativity and create an environment where young people can explore their boundless imaginations!
This year we have three bursary spaces that went to pupils from local schools involved in our Theatre School on the Road programme. On International Youth Day it’s important to note that opportunities are not always available to young people in our society due to income, location and background. We try to address this with outreach to schools and clubs throughout the year. Our goal is to have participants from all backgrounds join us here at the Lyric for an amazing Summer.