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Positive Stories for Negative Times Launches Season Three Next Year

As part of Season Three, Positive Stories will bring their young participants together at venues across Scotland for a series of Positive Stories festivals.

Positive Stories for Negative Times Launches Season Three Next Year

Critically acclaimed theatre company Wonder Fools return with a third season of their innovative participatory programme, Positive Stories for Negative Times. Teaming up with some of the UK's most brilliant theatrical minds, including award-winners Bryony Kimmings, Tim Crouch and Sara Shaarawi, Wonder Fools and Traverse Theatre have co-commissioned an exuberant series of new works for young people to be inspired by and create their own art from. Whether youth groups choose to stage these plays or simply use them as a stimulus for other forms of expression (an art exhibition, podcast, short film), all involvement is celebrated and shared on the project's website.

As part of Season Three, Positive Stories will bring their young participants together at venues across Scotland for a series of Positive Stories festivals. Taking place in Edinburgh, Ayr, Inverness and Perth over Summer 2023, each festival weekend will feature at least three performances and bring together young people from across Scotland to perform, meet and share their creative interests on their local stage. The weekends will feature workshops on the day with a chance for friends and family to see performances in the evening.

Throughout the previous seasons of the programme, 16 new pieces of writing have been created and over 7000 young people have taken part. Participants have come from 16 different countries, including South Africa, India, USA, Canada, Italy and Sweden. Previous playwrights include Stef Smith, Douglas Maxwell, writer/deviser Chris Thorpe and writer/poets Hannah Lavery and Sabrina Mahfouz as well as Wonder Fools' very own Robbie Gordon & Jack Nurse.

Any group of young people between 8 and 25 years of age can sign up to Positive Stories, and no experience of drama is necessary. Groups can participate remotely or in person via one of Wonder Fools' regional hubs. Sign ups to participate in one of the four Positive Stories Festivals close on February 17 2023, whilst those wanting to participate remotely are able to sign up until summer 2023..

Robbie Gordon and Jack Nurse of Wonder Fools said: "We couldn't be happier to be working with such a brilliant selection of artists including some of our favourite voices in the UK today on the next season of Positive Stories for Negative Times. All six of the works featured are all really different, but speak to a huge range of issues that young people are trying to navigate today.

"We have been blown away by the success of the project so far and we're all excited to see what comes of it a third time around. This season is the most ambitious yet and we are thrilled to be working with four brilliant partner venues to bring young people together in person to celebrate their work and meet each other at the four new festivals taking place next summer. We can't wait to see the community of people involved in the project grow, but more importantly we hope it continues to provide a platform for young people to connect, create, inspire and celebrate each other."

Bryony Kimmings, author of Revolting, said: "The best thing about being part of this collection of works is that access to the plays is free! Young people are the key to saving this planet... if I can inspire them to take a stand and change things that aren't right,then my job as an activist writer is working!"

Outreach Producer at Perth Theatre, Katie Mitchell, said: "We are super excited for Perth Theatre to be a host venue for this brilliant festival from our friends and Wonder Fools. We can't wait to see what the young people of Tayside can bring to our stages this summer. Perth Youth Theatre have loved being involved in the previous Positive Stories for Negative Times and we are looking forward to sharing this experience with them again."

Linda Crooks, Traverse Theatre Executive Producer said: "We are delighted to be working in association with Wonder Fools on this extraordinary project for the third year, and are thrilled to see it continuing to grow and connect with more participants around the world. We are thankful to our co-commissioned playwrights for creating pieces which are so inspiring, challenging - and above all, great fun for all those involved, including audiences! We're looking forward to seeing the brilliant work of this year's participants across all of the partner venues' festivals, and getting an exciting look into the next generation of creative talent."

Sophie Jacome, Wonder Fools Youth Board Member, said: "I am just so continuously impressed by the heart and values at the core of Wonder Fools, everyone who is a part of WF or works with you has been so lovely, every production and project seems to hang on questions of story and accessibility, and I can't think of a single other company whose name is so synonymous with fun and hope. No one else is doing theatre like you guys and the impact you have in people's lives is huge. Just, thank you."

Plays co-commissioned by Wonder Fools and Traverse Theatre. Supported by Creative Scotland.



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