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Larkin’ About In Richmond

Paul Kelly, Wednesday 12 March 2008 – 17:23:17

Larkin’ About was a site-specific theatre project which took place over one week in August 2005 delivered by the Arts Service at the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames in partnership with the National Youth Theatre and the Parks and Open Spaces Department. Building upon the success of our annual Larks in the Parks children’s theatre festival we were keen to develop a programme strand that would actively target excluded young people aged 13 to 16 years with cultural opportunities available in their locality.

The outcomes for participants included, recognition of their achievements by peers, family, project staff and general public, learning to negotiate with their peers and to resolve conflict through discussion, identifying new and appropriate role models, through direct contact with artists and project staff to whom the participants could relate and development of team work and collaborative skills.

What were the measures of success for the creative team? Peter Collins, NYT Associate Artist said: “There were many, but chiefly, retaining and actively engaging all participants for the full week; creating an environment to enable participants to lead and therefore own the creation of content for the piece and enabling the young people to engage with and reflect on their local environment.”

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