The Project

Platform

The first three plays in the Platform series are now published by Nick Hern Books and are available here.

Putting girls centre stage; an outstanding new series of scripts for schools and youth theatre groups.

The Project

Tonic wants to give more girls a fair crack at the action. Schools and youth theatres have told us how hard it is to find scripts that give girls enough to do and in response we’re launching our Platform series. Every year, starting in 2015, Tonic will commission three top UK writers to create new scripts written specifically for young people and packed with fantastic female roles. We’ll be getting the scripts published, making sure schools and youth theatres across the UK know how to get hold of them, and giving them support in staging their own productions.

The Context

Platform grew out of a nationwide research study we did in early 2012 in partnership with Company of Angels, the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain and Zendeh. The research examined how the quality and quantity of roles for girls in youth drama productions impacts on their experiences of taking part. A report on the research findings, Swimming in the shallow end, can be found here.

We learned from the research that while the majority of young people who take part in youth drama are female, when it comes to scripts, the majority of roles are male. We learned that there is a HUGE hunger for more scripts with lots of roles for girls (not just one or two!) and brilliant roles at that. We also learned that youth drama is something an awful lot of people are incredibly passionate about, and that girls want just as much of a chance to get up there and show what they can do as anyone else.

So we began thinking: wouldn’t it be great if we could commission some new plays with big casts and tons of fantastic, complex, varied, action-driving roles for girls? And then keep commissioning more, so that over time we’re creating a whole new canon of youth drama plays, plays that give the girls masses to get their teeth into and in the meantime, change the way they think about theatre.

The first three scripts in Tonic’s Platform series are now available: This Changes Everything by Joel Horwood, Second Person Narrative by Jemma Kennedy, and The Light Burns Blue by Silva Semerciyan. They are published by Nick Hern Books and for a limited period education, arts, and youth organisation can purchase them for a special reduced rate of £3 per copy (RRP £8.99) direct from tonictheatre-platform.co.uk.