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Curve is part of Theatre Nation Partnerships (TNP), an innovative network of theatres and community organisations founded by the National Theatre in 2017 to grow nationwide engagement with theatre.
As part of this, Curve is delivering Speak Up, a project which sees young people from schools in Leicester working in collaboration with local artists and teachers to lead creative projects. This dynamic programme has been developed with Theatre Nation Partners to inspire young people to speak up about the issues that matter to them and will reach 140,000 young people nationwide.
Speak Up mission statement
To inspire a movement of young people to speak up about the issues that matter to them and ignite the creativity of the next generation, encouraging new ways to think, see, and bring about change individually, and in the world.
What is Speak Up?
Speak Up is a secondary school programme that sees young people working in collaboration
with local artists and teachers to co-create artistic responses to issues that are most important
Speak Up is taking place in selected schools across England delivered through the National
Theatre’s Theatre Nation Partnership partners – Cast in Doncaster, The Lowry in Salford,
Curve in Leicester, Landmark Theatres in North Devon, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, Regent
Theatre and Victoria Hall in Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland Empire and Sunderland Culture,
Theatre Royal Wakefield, and the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre.
The programme takes place in areas of low arts engagement where there is an inequality of access
to opportunities for young people and their voices are not always heard. From 2022 to 2025
Speak Up will engage with 140,000 young people in 55 selected secondary schools
The NT is collaborating with LUNG as Creative Associates to deliver the training of artists and
teachers to develop the creative ambitions of Speak Up. LUNG is a campaign-led verbatim
theatre company which works closely with communities nationally to sign a light on political,
social and economic issues in modern Britain to ensure hidden voices are heard.
Speak Up is generously supported by the Mohn Weslake Foundation which shares the NT’s
belief in the power of youth voice and working with young people to enable positive change in
their lives, schools and communities.
Impact of Speak Up
Speak Up takes place in areas where there is an inequality of access to opportunities for young people.
· Young people are supported and nurtured to become the leaders of the future, by putting them at the heart of the creative process and decision making.
· Teachers are able to actively find ways that Speak Up can shape and impact the culture of their school.
· Artists have the freedom to collaboratively and equitably make work without any predetermined outcomes.
· Arts organisations can meaningfully shape how those with less power can have genuine agency within their organisations.
Over the course of this three year project, Speak Up will engage with 140,000 young people in 55 selected secondary schools across 11 areas of England. Schools are selected via invitation from the Theatre Nation Partnership (TNP) venues and the National Theatre.