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Creative Learning


The Creative Learning department recruited and launched their Grand Young Technicians this Half term. The 10 Young people from Blackpool took up the opportunity and worked with us alongside different departments gaining hands on experience and an insight into the day to day running of the Theatre on our professional productions.

The week started with a Stage Management ‘taking part’ workshop, where a script read through took place. The stage directions and props were noted to create the Assistant Stage Managers Paperwork and we took notes from the director on blocking and ques from a rehearsal perspective to see how the Deputy Stage Managers ‘Book’ is created.

Following the Workshop, Shaun Gorringe, the Front of House Manager gave an intriguing insight into his varied role in the Theatre and the close links he plays with the in-house technicians and production teams that tour with the shows. They also had many questions about the actors, comedians and musicians he’s met over the years working at the Grand, but we promised not to tell!

Joss Arnott was with us over half term creating a Curtain raiser with 21 young people from Fylde Coast Youth Dance and Preston Youth Dance. While choreographing in our Studio, he invited the Grand Young Technicians to watch his rehearsal and then we had the opportunity to interview him about the lighting, sound and set elements he chose for his upcoming production. We can’t wait to see him again very soon to for his triple bill on the main stage in all its technical glory.

The group got to see our in-house technicians do the Get In and Fit Up of Jasmin Vardimons Pinocchio, a piece co-commissioned by the Grand. The huge vibrant set also contained lots of complicated flying sequences and we saw first-hand how technical problems arise and how hard work and fast thinking is needed to get the show open on time for a busy, ticket paying audience. After the show, we got to meet the lovely Jasmin as she kindly gave us her time after her beautiful but dark production, to explain the concept behind her set, lighting, flying and musical choices.

A highlight from the week was a frank and honest interview with the Grand’s CEO Ruth Eastwood. Most people were really surprised to hear that the Theatre was a charity and see the costs of productions and the upkeep of the building. Ruth also regaled highlights from her career, the ups and downs of programming in Blackpool, and some great celebrity stories…but again to find out those you will have to ask a Young Technician, we were sworn to secrecy!!

The Theatre want to wish the Grand Young Technicians all the Best with their Bronze Technical Arts Award, and we look forward to seeing them again at Joss Arnott’s production then again in the summer to work with us on the Grand Young Companies showcase.

Please email to find out how to sign up to our future workshops and opportunities and to be put on our mailing list.


Don’t worry if you can’t make this event, Creative Learning run many events throughout the year for ages 3 to 103! Just keep visiting our blog to hear about the next event or sign up to the Grand Theatre’s Twitter or Facebook page. Why not follow us on Instagram too!