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Posted on: May 10th 2018

National Theatre Connections - Dungeness

On Sunday 6th May, eight students from Year 10, 12 and 13 performed at The North Wall, Oxford, as part of the National Theatre Connections 2018 programme. Back in October last year, Mrs Cutter and Miss Batten embarked on a journey to find the perfect Connections play for our school, finally deciding upon (and falling in love with) Dungeness by Chris Thompson.

Fifty years on from the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality in England, Thompson wanted to write a play about the struggles and the joy of being gay. In a remote part of the UK, where nothing ever happens, a group of teenagers share a safe house for LGBT+ young people. While their shared home welcomes difference, it can be tricky for self-appointed group leader Birdie to keep the peace.

The group must decide how they want to commemorate an attack that happened to people like them in a country far away. How do you take to the streets and protest if you’re not ready to tell the world who you are? If you’re invisible, does your voice still count? This is most certainly a play about love, commemoration and protest, with plenty of acting challenges for our young people.

The students' performance on Sunday was played to a full-house, with an audience response of raucous laughter and thoughtful silence in equal measure. The Drama Department are incredibly proud of the grit, sincerity, maturity, commitment and talent of the following students:

Katy Jacques
Clara Emmett
Danielle Williams
Jamie Chapman
Emma Shaw
Albert Warner
Amelia Jones
Freya Brimson

Huge thanks goes out to all students, parents and staff who have supported us on our journey, particularly those who gave up their Sunday morning lie-in to make the trip down to the North Wall. We now eagerly await to find out if we have the opportunity to perform at The National Theatre!