This season, Lewes Theatre Youth Group will present part one of the two-play dramatisation of Philip Pullman’s extraordinary award-winning fantasy trilogy that will take audiences on a thrilling journey full of magical creatures in worlds, both familiar and unknown.
During their quest, the vast and varied cast which are led by key characters Lyra Belacqua and Will Parry, encounter various creatures from witches to armoured polar bears, in a journey that they hope will help them uncover the mysteries of Dust and win a cosmic war to protect people from the creation of Spectres. Some of the ensemble will have the challenging task of bringing the character’s dearest companions – the Dæmons - to life on stage. These companions represent the person’s external physical manifestation of their soul in the form of an animal, with human intelligence and speech. Our students will benefit from learning new techniques through specialist puppetry workshops that we will be running in term one. The methods used to guide the actors with their characterisation will be in the form of helping them to find the characters’ animal instincts (human and non-human characters) as well as their leading body part. This technique helps actors to realise an organic being, rather than a pre-empted character with the usual stock physicality or voice. LTYG students are taught that we are all who we are because of the attributes that describe us. These attributes affect the way we walk, talk and react to situations and that their characters need this too to be realistic and therefore evoke an emotional response from the audience. In addition to the Brechtian style scenery, LTYG actors and audiences will enjoy multi-purpose props and scenery, combined with an array of contrasting colours with authentic earth toned Victorian costumes for Lyra’s world and bright 1970s outfits for the Cittagazze . This play was cited by the Independent as ‘Children’s theatre of an uncommon maturity and ambition... dazzling in just the right way... moments of heart-stopping simplicity’. LTYG is very much looking forward to bringing a new adventure to Lewes Little Theatre with the most adventurous staging from the group yet.