Last weekend, Class in Action had its twelfth edition in Prague. For three days, students of various nationalities rehearsed, competed, and devised short plays, all of which were performed at Divaldo Na Pradle.
This year, theatre schools from England, Ireland, France, Russia, and Poland, had to come up and devise a full play based on one of the following themes: ‘Trick’, or ‘Reap what you Sow’. Needless to say that those themes opened doors for various interpretations. From reality shows to dystopia, cyber-bullying and disfunctional families, the students definitely proved they had an endless imagination and a talent for creativity and blocking their plays.
Every performance significantly gave the contestants a run for their money, and it was also captivating to see how the students resorted to different techniques to seduce the judges and the audience. While Nameless (Poland) and Institution Sainte Philomène (France) gave us a good laugh, S.P.U.D.S. (England) and M.A.D Youth Theatre (Ireland) chose to deal with some more serious themes, like dystopian futures and cyber-bullying. Meanwhile, Author’s Theatre Organisation (Russia) succeeded in astonishing both the jury and the audience with their flamboyant costumes and songs. That being said, behind laughs and gags, the plays all had deep messages, and balancing these two elements can be quite challenging
PYT Plus group even performed as well, but not as contestants. After PYT’s tremendous success at Class in Action last year, the group performed an exhibition extract from 26 Pebbles by Eric Ulloa, a play they will continue to develop until the main public performance in June.
Anyway, after two days of intense rehearsal and performance, it was time to relieve all that stress. All groups gathered at Paralelni Polis to participate in open-mic games and start working on theatre workshops. This was the perfect opportunity for the students to get to know each other and form bonds. During the next day, the newly-formed groups kept on putting together their new short plays, which were then performed at Na Pradle. But this time, no stress: only fun and games !
And finally, Class in Action ended on Saturday with the awards ceremony everyone was eager for. It was tough choosing a winner for each category, but the jury eventually managed to come to a decision. Missed the results ? Check them out here !
Best Costumes: Author’s Theatre Organisation
Best Sound and Light: M.A.D Youth Theatre
Best script: S.P.U.D.S.
Honourable mention for best script: Patrycja Jakubowska (Nameless)
Best supporting actress: Darija Martinkute (M.A.D Youth Theatre)
Best supporting actor: Hugo Baerthel (Institution Sainte Philomène)
Best actress: Kirsti Burch (S.P.U.D.S.)
Honorable mention for best actress: Sara Weyer (Institution Sainte Philomène),
Jessica Maserow (S.P.U.D.S.), Hanna Hutnick (Nameless)
Best actor: Calvin Magee (M.A.D Youth Theatre)
Honourable mention for best actor: Cole Cumiskey (M.A.D Youth Theatre), Sammy Collins-Webb (S.P.U.D.S.), Author’s Theatre Organisation
Special creativity award: Author’s Theatre Organisation
Overall winner: S.P.U.D.S.
Audience vote winner: S.P.U.D.S.
Congratulations to you all! And remember, expressing such creativity and bringing to life a whole play is a victory in itself! You are all winners, and we look forward to seeing many more talented students and amazing plays next year.
Prague Youth Theatre
Prague’s only English speaking youth theatre. Empowering students aged 3-17 to connect with one another, develop confidence, and create impactful stories. www.pyt.cz