Plays for Youth Theatres & Large Casts
by Neil Duffield
Four plays ideal for larger youth theatre casts:
Talking with Angels | The Minotaur | Small Fry | Twice Upon A Time
Plays for Youth Theatres & Large Casts: Four Popular Plays for Young Audiences by Neil Duffield brings together four scripts which have been tried and tested and continue to be performed regularly in youth theatres and schools since this anthology was first published in 2009.
All are dramatic adventure stories and are aimed principally at the 12-16 age-range, although Small Fry has been performed by 10-11 year olds. Production can be adapted with simple or elaborate props, scenery and costume and music can be recorded or live.
“Neil Duffield is a highly successful writer of plays for children and young people, with over fifty productions under his belt, many of these commissioned by leading UK theatres and touring companies… Having worked closely with Neil during my career as a theatre director, I can vouch for his understanding of young audiences by the spellbound silences (and roars of laughter) that greet his productions.” David Farmer, Drama Resource
Twice Upon a Time: Somewhere in the distant future a creature deceives a young warrior into entering the Otherworld. Can he find his way back to the girl he loves?
Twice Upon A Time explores the blurred lines between reality, fantasy and virtual reality in the form of a fantasy adventure set in the future as a love story twists its way through parallel worlds of reality, dreams and online-gaming.
The script was based on a devising process with a youth theatre and Duffield has successfully pulled together the themes they came up with by producing a play which should have great resonance with young people. Interestingly, the original production had two completely different casts of 24 each for the first and second act, and while this is not a requirement, it may provide a useful solution for particularly large groups.
“There’s some serious thought here about storytelling, perception, imagination, and different realities; and a few fine performances, too, from a company whose outstanding commitment and energy shine through every line of this blazingly adventurous show” The Scotsman on the Dundee Rep. production
Small Fry: Winner of The Writers’ Guild Award for Best Children’s Play 2006.
“A play that pits dragons, scavengers and small fry against each other in a battle for power, ownership and belonging.” The Telegraph
“A spell-binding version of the famous myth of Theseus and the Minotaur… An adventure for younger audiences [with] love, lust, betrayal and sibling rivalry…. a story that asks important questions” Sheffield Star
Talking with Angels: An original and highly imaginative retelling of the complex story of Joan of Arc.
“This fine show is suitable for anyone over the age of 7 and it works very well, especially the last powerful scene of Joan at the stake.” The Stage
About the author
Neil Duffield has written more than fifty plays and adaptations which have been staged extensively throughout Britain and abroad. In 2006, he won the Arts Council England Children’s Award for Small Fry ‘for work which displays excellence, inspiration and innovation in children’s theatre.’ Neil lives in Bolton with his wife, theatre director Eileen Murphy.