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“Theatre With No Fear” is the opening line on Frantic Assembly’s website and as an internationally renowned theatre company, known for their inspiring, innovative practices they certainly practice what they preach. It’s no surprise therefore that we jumped at the opportunity to be involved in a collaborative project with them and United Learning. 

Krista Vuori, one of Frantic’s specialist practitioners, spent Friday afternoon in the Academy sharing techniques and the building blocks of creating devised theatre the Frantic way.

Students from drama and dance in years 9, 10 and 12 worked together exploring the empowering, physical and highly imaginative methods Frantic Assembly employ to unlock creative potential and develop narratives that are, at times, fast-paced and dynamic and at others, gentle and tender. Working in this way requires trust in the people you are with and a willingness to just go with the process.  It demands bravery and confidence, both of which our students demonstrated in bucket-loads!

They began with simple movement exercises, building into more complex patterns before developing lifts and then exploring the narrative potential in the pieces created. In one afternoon we unlocked narratives around jealousy, love of football and old friends; we went into someone’s subconscious; we had our hearts explode from our chests and we witnessed the struggle to beat somebody else to the prize.  The building blocks for this process of devising are simple but the possibilities are endless.

Students will now take the skills they have learnt in this workshop and develop a performance to be showcased with other schools at the Dancehouse in Manchester on the 20th April.