GADS Youth Workshop 2022 - GADS Gosforth

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GADS Youth Workshop 2022


To help fund this workshop we are
delighted to acknowledge a grant from


1 to 6 August 2022

Workshop week

Gosforth Public Hall


The workshop began on Mon 1st Aug, running from 10 am to 4 pm daily, Monday to Friday. The workshop was open to anyone aged 8 - 18 at the start of the week, and the maximum number (25) were enrolled in record time. The week culminated with a performance on Saturday evening (6 Aug) starting at 6pm.
This show was
NOT OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. It was only open to participants' families and other GADS members, by (free) ticket.


1 August 2022

As always on these weeks, the morning started quite slowly with the processing of paperwork and getting organised. All of the parents did very well to have all of their things in order - gold stars all around for the adults! We began by getting to know each other with some name games and general silliness, including tying ourselves in knots (quite literally). Much toast was consumed before we completed our ‘auditions’. This year’s show is much more hands on for the youngsters, with a combination of monologues, duologues, singing and directing for them to get involved in. There’s a lot to be done! One thing we did really well though, and it blew Tosh’s mind, was to learn the whole of the very fast and complicated dance routine. It’s going to look amazing! After a lot of dancing, we got to a quick directing masterclass and then our first scene. We learned the difference between upstage and downstage, stage left and stage right, and how to be seen by the audience. We may even remember some of it tomorrow. Parts were handed out and we had a read through. We then handed out monologues and duologues so people could have a read through at home before we start all over again tomorrow. We finished the day with some more silliness and games. A fantastic day by all, good effort, and we’re looking forward to tomorrow.


2 August 2022

Today we achieved so much it amazed us - again! We started with the usual warmup games to get our creative juices going, pretending to be cowboys, getting to know one another, and some dramatic twists on musical chairs and Grandmother’s Footsteps. They’re all relevant to being actors, we promise! Slightly less toast was consumed today, but we seem to have a problem in that our actors keep turning upside down. Every time they had a break they were hardstanding, cartwheeling and flipping all around the hall. We may have to start tying them down… After our break the real work started. All the participants were split into their scene groups and they began rehearsing. They were also tasked with creating a props and set list for our backstage team to start searching out. They even made the creative decisions about the size of their set and which backcloths they wanted. No painting this year, they have to work with what we have and learn to compromise based on the space and the other scenes. We had a working lunch, confirming scenery cloths and props, then worked in our monologue groups doing the same again. Tosh did some quick working out of logistics while the youngsters wink-murdered one another and the final props were found, then we managed a full run of all the scenes! It was messy and a bit slow, but everyone performed their piece on stage in front of their peers - and they did incredibly well! Their audience etiquette was great and everyone got rounds of applause. A quick sing of our musical number rounded off the afternoon, with even enough time for a few minutes of King of the Jungle. Well done everyone - day three tomorrow, and still plenty to crack on with! Some more photos - and apologies that some aren't very clear - they were taken a t adistance so as not to put the soloists off.


3 August 2022

Wednesday started off much slower and quieter - it took a while for our energy and creative juices to get going. Maybe they’re getting tired? Maybe not… We started off doing some very creative things with a cardboard box, treating it as anything but! It became a television set, a hat, a chair, and a football - among many other things. The other warmup was to create their own news report for an event of their choosing. Again we had everything from the end of the world to some thing called a ‘GADS summer workshop’ (whatever that is). When watching everyone put their director heads on and thought about ways they could improve the scenes. They then took this feedback away and considered their own scenes for Saturday’s performance. Then it was toast time, and a surprise fire drill - which we passed with flying colours. We found and hung some cloths for scenery, but the biggest part of the day was programming the lighting desk. This is a slow and very boring process which everyone was very patient with. Our young directors helped Tosh and Jim programme the desk with the look they wanted for their scenes. We stopped after a few scenes because it gets a bit tedious, and spent the last hour of the day singing and dancing. The song it going to be quite the finale. Tomorrow it’s more singing, more dancing, more lighting, and more rehearsing. Saturday is shaping up to be quite a performance.


4 August 2022

It might not look like we did a lot today, but it’s just that point of the week when lots of the ‘fun’ stuff has to be put aside for more practical matters! We did of course start with some silly games, and I honestly think they’re all getting a little tired… It took a while to get the focus and energy levels up this morning, but once we did we were set for the day. First job was to finish plotting all of the lights with our directors. To make the most of our time, the dancers went upstairs with Jim to choreograph the dance break in our musical number. Between them they divided up the section, assigned dancers to each part and choreographed their own movements to it. And it looks great. We also had a creative team making posters and designing the front of the programme - and some were very sparkly! At some point during all that there was toast as well...We danced and sang up a storm for a good long while before a well-earned lunch break. After lunch we did a cue-to-cue, a slow and tedious process where everyone got a chance to practice the scene changes and Jim and Tosh got a chance to practice their parts as well, running the lights and backstage movements. Everyone worked really hard yet again and we’re in a very strong position for our performance on Saturday night. The nerves are definitely setting in now, and people are very aware there’s going to be an audience watching them before long. We believe they’ll be brilliant though!


5 August 2022

So the week has come to a conclusion, and what a conclusion it has been. For the fifth day in a row our young people have worked their socks off to bring the show together. The day began by setting the last few lights that we missed yesterday, then we did our first full run through. We had lights, we had sounds, we had scene changes and props. There were only a few scripts in sight as well, which is just amazing to see - I don’t know many adults who could be off book in less than a week! A slightly late toast break was very welcome, which we followed with some singing and dancing and our last bit of rehearsal time. Lunch was a fairly quite time, and after it we did a full dress rehearsal. The cast did really well, it was very smooth and you wouldn’t know that they had only been doing this show for a week. We ended the day with a number of silly games, suggested by the youngsters and chosen by a random generator. What a week we’ve had! All that’s left is to show off what we’ve done tomorrow night!


Saturday 6 August 2022 - Showtime


Thank you all so much for this week and the performance today! What a brilliant time A and S had. They loved every day and made some new friends. (Parent)

J really enjoyed her week at GADS. She said that she particularly enjoyed having autonomy to choose lighting, costumes and have set input. She also liked being asked what they preferred to perform so they played to their strengths. It was a fun and engaging week and the show at the end was an added bonus. Thanks to all who were involved.  (Parent)

Thank you so much for another wonderful week, the kids had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of their experience both on and off the stage. (Parent)

A had a great time, as always. He loves the acting, and that he is able to do it in the way he feels suits him the best. He enjoyed being able to direct, and the teamwork involved in the whole week. He can't wait for next year. Thanks to everyone involved. (Parent)

Excellent workshop. A thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you for all off your hardwork. (Parent)

Absolutely awesome week. Loved it. Every minute especially the toast!!! Great directing skills, acting skills and set building. Overall, fab experience again and can't wait for next year. Thank you everyone for all their hard work and commitment to make this week possible. (Participant)

Thanks for putting the workshop on over the last week, the girls absolutely love GADS and it’s great for them to get to know other kids and stuff and all the little shows at the end were great. (Parent)

E thoroughly enjoyed the part of the week she was able to attend. Working on back stage jobs made her feel part of the teamwork as much as taking an active part. Thank you for allowing her to attend part week (due to her pre booked holiday) it is great character building for her, and no doubt for her existing and new friends taking part too! Thank you to you all, for keeping such a great community initiative going. (Parent)

It was amaziiiing, with 4 i's. (Participant)

It was absolutely brilliant. As a parent, it’s something that builds confidence and gets them involved in so many different things that they wouldn’t normally do, developing practical skills and communication skills, plus we loved the show! E said that she really enjoyed getting involved in all the different aspects of the show from the costumes to the lighting. All in all 10/10 and we’re looking forward to panto! (Parent)

A throughly enjoyed the summer workshop, she enjoyed spending time with her friends and learning new skills.  She liked this year that you got to work on different things, performing, directing, singing, choosing costumes for the pieces they where working on, and always enjoys the performance at the end of the week to show what they have achieved which is always a lot! (Parent)

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