Theatre By The Lake to host Connections Festival

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Keswick’s Theatre by the Lake will host the 2020 National Theatre Connections festival which takes place from March 17 to 19.

The venue will be welcoming six theatre companies to perform specially commissioned pieces, written for Connections.

Kirkgate Youth Theatre (Cockermouth), Theatre Royal Youth (Workington), Youth Arts Centre (Isle of Man), Brewery Youth Theatre, Story Makers from Blackburn and Theatre by the Lake’s own Young Company will all get a chance to do their selected plays.

Plays chosen for the festival by these groups are: The IT by Vivienne Franzmann, Tuesday by Alison Carr, Dungeness by Chris Thompson, A Series of Public Apologies by John Donnelly and Crusaders by Frances Poet.

Liz Stevenson, artistic director of Theatre by the Lake, said: “We are so excited to be a partner venue for this wonderful festival and celebration of young people’s creativity, and can’t wait to welcome the participating youth theatres to TBTL. We are also very grateful to have received an enhancement fund from the National Theatre to enable us to really make this as accessible as possible, as well as a brilliant experience for all the groups involved.”

The enhancement fund will go towards workshops for each group, subsidised tickets (including groups who are interested in learning more about NT Connections), and transport and food costs.

This year National Theatre Connections is working with up to 300 youth theatres and schools to stage ten newly commissioned plays.

Kirsten Adam, connections producer, said: “We have loved having Theatre by the Lake as a Connections Partner Theatre this year, and the team have done a brilliant job of reaching out to new schools and youth theatres in Cumbria. We are really looking forward to continuing to work with them, and getting more companies in the region involved in the work of Connections.”

To book to see the groups perform at the festival contact the Theatre by the Lake Box Office on 017687 74411 or visit the website at

National Theatre Connections is one of the UK’s largest celebrations of youth theatre. Plays are commissioned for and about young people, from some of the best contemporary playwrights, and performed by schools and youth theatres all over the UK and Ireland.

Young people have the opportunity to get involved in all aspects of creating and staging the play both on and offstage, from set design to costume, lighting and stage management.


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